Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Foam Boarded Windows

Often times, I make things harder than they need to be.  But I realize this, and admit it, which I have heard is the first step to recovery.

I might not want recovery, though, as I have found I like STEPS… steps in a process, steps in a project, in a recipe, whatever I’m doing.  Structure.  Steps.  Safe.  Whatever.

So I started researching… early on.  I found two sites that I really liked, and tried to take a little from each one.  Juggernaut’s page on Horrorfind has an excellent tutorial HERE and another that really helped me was on Hauntedyards.com, HERE.

*Sidenote:  My favorite of all, but completely out of my artistic league –  is Ghoul Friday's amazing work on cardboard… yes, a 6 foot single sheet of cardboard painted to look like slats of wood.  I wanna do that!!!  ‘Ahh, patience young grasshopper, and one day you will paint like the Ghoul Friday….’  Anyways, its a great tutorial, check it out.

Ok, back to my making things harder than they have to be.

I had Jayson measure the windows… unfortunately we have about 33 (that sarcastic) windows in the front/side of our house – so I knew I would have to make alot of boards.  Got out the trusty Wonder Cutter and got to work.

Halloween thru Christmas 2008 019 

Paint.  Well, I painted one solid brown, and didn’t like it.  Too fake.  Too flat. 

Tried the dry brush thing – feeling all DawnFriday-like and all…. it looked like a First Grader got a hold of my brush.  Looked bad.  So I needed depth and texture, I can’t paint it right…  so I grabbed the monster mud.

Yes, I iced the cake… err, monster mudded my foam fence pickets… crazy, I know.  I spread it smooth like frosting, then I took various tools and made “wood grain”.  Halloween thru Christmas 2008 049 Okay, so that looks more like cottage cheese, don’t pay attention to it.










Once I got the right technique down to make it look more like wood grain and less like oatmeal, then I tried the dry brushing over that – I mean, that's easy… the raised surface takes the paint, the recessed area doesn’t…

Halloween thru Christmas 2008 047 Halloween thru Christmas 2008 052

And then I had boards everywhere…. Halloween thru Christmas 2008 061 Halloween thru Christmas 2008 020 Halloween thru Christmas 2008 022 Halloween thru Christmas 2008 058 Because of course, MM takes longer to dry than paint.  *I realize this AFTER I had done a thousand boards.. DOH!)

The point?  I made it harder than it was….. no one EVER noticed the texture on the boards on the windows… twenty feet away… as viewed from the sidewalk… in the DARK….  

But I knew.  And I would do it again. 

Installation day:  Velcro’d to the outside of the window frame.  Velcro’d to brick.  Worked like a charm.

Halloween thru Christmas 2008 232This one board had eyes glued into it.  Can’t see it in the dark… I know, I know…  haha……… now I just need LEDs.


Halloween thru Christmas 2008 360

Halloween thru Christmas 2008 470Jayson even velcro’d boards directly onto our front door.  Made it easier getting the kid on the bus in the morning if he wasnt having to step through hoops… err, boards.

This project was a lot of fun, and will be a cinch to reinstall next year.  My only word of advice: Use the strongest Velcro you can find (and then good luck cutting it into strips, that adhesive can ruin good scissors!) so that the wind wont pull your boards loose.  We used industrial velcro, and only had the END of one plank come loose for the 2 or 3 weeks they were on the house.  


suzanne said...

I can completely relate to "making things harder than they have to be" . . . but I'm working on simplifying :)

Love your blog! (and your banner!)

Grim said...

Those look great! I made simple square frames the same size as my windows and nailed scrap pieces of wood to them, then hung them from the window trim with some "J" shaped hooks. They wound up being pretty heavy, but worked fine. I think boarding the windows adds a lot to the haunt, and it's one of the easiest things to do! (at least mine were)

Chris 'Frog Queen' Davis said...

Wonderful blog!!

Great technique. We have been replacing all the boards in our haunt with foam to make them lighter. We should have a how to - with lots of pictures :) in our book coming out late summer.

Ghoul Friday said...

Thanks for the shout-out :) And you can TOTALLY do it! I promise!


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