Persimmon Wash

For the past two days, Jo and I have been applying kakishibu, persimmon tanin dye, to the cedar cladding on the outside of 555.

It feels like washing the house. The kakishibu is non-viscous liquid, barely thicker than water, so we have filled our buckets with the dye and used rags to apply it. I’ve been up on a ladder doing the high parts and Jo’s managed my drips and coated the lower part of the house.

We’ve done two coats on the back and sides of the house with a plan to do at least one more, and possibly a fourth. We have plenty of kakishibu to work with; so far we’ve used less than a third of the 60 liters I bought.

East side after two coats – nothing on the front yet.

I will wait to color the front until all the cladding is on it, which will happen after the front door is installed. Maybe in July? It seems like the wise thing to do, but then again, the fresh cedar will be a pinker color than the boards that are already up. Maybe we should do the front now, too.

[Side note: the above paragraph is a good example of the decisions that I keep encountering. I don’t know enough to make a well-informed decision, so I make a choice (wait to paint the front). But then I second guess that choice (the missing boards will be a different color) and go around in circles. This has been the case with a lot of the house process and it’s frustrating.]

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Mediatinker, Kristen McQuillin, is an American-born resident of Japan since 1998. This blog chronicles her life, projects, thoughts, and small adventures.