Bedec are a small, British paint company. Many of you may not have heard of Bedec, but it has a damn useful range of paints. I'll blog more about some of their paints in other blogs, but for the time, here's one on their brilliant Barn Paint... and no, it's not just for barns! 

You can buy it online at Allfinishes here:

The Shed
I got an old 8ft by 8ft shed from Freecycle. It was stained brown, patchy brown, all over. It looked like a big, ugly, brown lump in our garden. Now I was thinking of giving it two coats of oil-based primer (to cover what looked like oil-based stain, and some bits of what looked like bitumen), and two coats of eggshell to 'prettify' it. But I'd used Bedec Multi Surface Paint before for interior paint work, and thought it was good stuff. So looked up the Barn Paint. There was a chance I'd be able to turn a 4 coat job into a 2 coat job! Perfect. I'm a busy person. My darling Jules and I chose 'French Grey'. We used one watered-down coat as a primer, and one topcoat. Done. Very quick, very simple, and it dries incredibly quickly too. This is how it still looks one year on: 

It gives an acrylic finish, somewhere between eggshell and satin. 

The Planters
I'd bought some cheap planters to grow herbs and vegetables in before we got the rest of our garden sorted. Unfortunately our chickens, which we'd been letting have free range of the garden, decimated the lot! Happy chickens. So the planters were empty for a time, until our wedding day. We were on a budget, and wanted a very homespun wedding reception, so we put up a tent in our garden with the help of some fabulous friends, and some more friends helped us buy plants and plant up the garden.

I decided our planters would look much better matching the shed in French Grey. I had very little time so one afternoon spent about an hour giving them ONE QUICK COAT of some of the Bedec Barn Paint we had left over. To get full coverage they'd need two coats, but they suited a slightly washed out look (very slightly, the paint covers very well). There's one in front of the shed in the photo above. And here's a quick shot of the painting in question. I coated EVERY SURFACE - sorry for that being in capitals but I wanted to emphasise that. It means that the timber will be more protected from the soil inside and being watered and left out in the rain. I'll empty the planters in the winter, wash them out and can give them another coat. They will last a long time (they only cost £20 each from Argos). 

Yep, that's just one coat of Barn Paint. It was dry enough within an hour to turn over to slap a bit on their bottoms (I say, Matron!) It was a hot day, usually I'd leave it 4 hours for a second coat. They can have a second coat when I empty them in the winter, but I'm not emptying them when they look this good! 

You can find more info on Bedec Barn Paint here: 

A quick aside, I used Bedec Superflex on the felt roof of the shed. It's very, very stretchy and is protecting the felt nicely. It's a lot quicker to put another coat on the felt than replace the felt itself. I'll be keeping an eye on how long it lasts, but it's been on a year and still looks good. More info here:

I have to say a special thank you to our friend Sally for helping choose plants, and for Clare and Adam for doing all the planting while we were putting up the marquee! We did pay everyone in cake. 

For exterior woodwork, Bedec Barn Paint is a damn good option - even if the timber is stained, has been painted with oil or acrylic paints, or has bitumen or creosote on! It's also flexible, so will move as the timber expands and contracts in the wonderfully varied weather we have in the British Isles. I have no idea how they get the paint to cover so well - even on tar -  but their chemists are known to be a bit on the clever side and I guess that's a trade secret. I'd recommend Barn Paint. You can buy it in various places online, but I buy it in my local Brewers Decorators' Merchants and from Allfinishes here: