Saturday, August 14, 2010
Barn Born Again
I have written before about the many ways that a barn can be refurbished into a new life. If an old barn is taken down or falls down, there are numerous ways the wood can be used. Of course, we are all familiar with reclaimed barnwood furniture. Its durability and personality can be a wonderful addition to your living room, dining room, or bedroom.
Barn wood can also be brought to new life in siding for houses, sheds, or other outbuildings. I have mentioned before the use of barnwood for houses and garden sheds. Recently I saw a chicken coop that had been built out of old barnwood. The coop was a new addition to the farmyard where it stood, but because of the naturally weathered wood, it looked as though it had been in that location for years. The owner had opted to keep the original finish on the boards instead of putting a coat of barn red paint on them. Because the coop had been placed in the midst of a few established shrubs and trees, the chickens had a nice shady spot to roost and while their days away.
Re-purposing old barn wood makes sense in many ways. Obviously we prefer the wood stay intact on the barns they began their journey with, but sometimes that is not possible. In those cases, it is better to reuse the wood than to send it to the burn pile or let it rot on the ground. We do justice to our American history when we introduce that reclaimed wood into our homes as furniture or include it in our house or outbuildings. By choosing to purchase reclaimed barn wood, we allow an old barn to be born again.