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Bring out the best in your deck

From the Resene decorating blog

We’re big on our backyard barbecues, soaking up the sun in outdoor spaces and splashing around in the pool every summer, yet not so hot on caring for the asset that enables all this – our decks.

An outdoor dining area with a rustic look

Resene Woodsman is ideal for achieving a rustic look and formulated with superior mould resistance to help protect your timber from the elements. On this decking we’ve used Resene Woodsman Banjul. The left wall is in Resene Pearl Lusta and the back wall is in Resene Rumour Has It. The table is in Resene Sambuca; the stools are in Resene Celebrate (left and front), Resene Aloha (back) and Resene Malarky (right); the platter is in Resene Ruby Tuesday and the woven cover is in Resene Celebrate. Project by Claudia Kozub, image by Wendy Fenwick.

Ongoing maintenance might seem like a hassle, but we’re here to tell you it’s not – not when you have top-notch products and a little know-how at hand. In fact, some well-timed TLC can add value you didn’t see coming.

Great stains

If your deck’s looking a bit weathered, your first step in returning it to its former glory is to repair any rotting or cracked boards before treating it with Resene Moss & Mould Killer and giving it a thorough clean with Resene Timber & Deck Wash or Resene Paint Prep & Housewash. Job well done, for a natural finish, use Resene Furniture & Decking Oil, which is designed for annual application to enhance and restore the timber’s hue while protecting from water, fungi and UV rays.

Or you might like a subtle change of colour. Among your options for staining your deck are Resene Kwila Timber Stain, Resene Woodsman Wood Oil Stain and Resene Woodsman Decking Oil Stain. They’re designed to add your choice of colour to new or already stained timber, while letting the wood grain show through. You’ll find the colour range online, and at your local Resene ColorShop, but some favourites include:


Brown stains are a popular choice for their classic look and the visual warmth they bring to timber decking. Rich, dark brown stains such as Resene Woodsman Bark and Resene Woodsman Tamarind adds depth, while paler browns such as Resene Woodsman Uluru reflect light and create a sense of openness.


For contemporary appeal, go black. The type of timber your deck is made of will affect the finish you achieve, but Resene Woodsman Pitch Black is sophisticated whichever way you look at it. If you are going dark, consider using a Resene CoolColour version of your colour to heat reflect more heat and keep the deck cooler than the standard colour.


Grey stains may not seem an obvious choice, but they provide a fantastic base for bright accent colours you can add to your outdoor area in the form of plant pots and other accessories. There are many variations in the Resene Woodsman range – a popular one to try is Resene Tiri.

Using soft modern grey on decking

For a soft, lived-in look, opt for modern grey Resene Woodsman Tiri on decking. The wall is in Resene Triple Merino, the screen is in Resene Bounty and Resene Big Stone, the plant pots are in (from left) Resene Half Alabaster, Resene Gull Grey and Resene Balderdash and Resene Bluff. Sofa and table are from Outside Spaces, cushion from Collect Living. Project by Kate Alexander, image by Bryce Carleton.


A hint of red can be beautiful against green grass, making your outdoor setting sing. Resene Woodsman Japanese Maple is a gorgeous red-brown, while Resene Cedar is a brown with warm red undertones.

Word to the wise

The hue, hardness and grain of timber varies greatly, so when selecting which product to use, test it on a representative piece of your wood first to ensure you’re happy with the finish.

Paint it

If you’re a little late with the TLC and your deck is too neglected to look good stained, you can rely on paint to put it right – and fast. Resene Cafe Royale is a coffee tone that’s available as a Resene CoolColour – these paints contain pigment technology that reflects more heat, extending the life of the colour and substrate it’s painted on, and helping feet avoid the burning feeling. Or go for a pale hue such as grey-white Resene Triple Black White for a Cape Cod-esque aesthetic. To apply, spot prime with Resene Quick Dry undercoat (if your deck is painted) or Resene Wood Primer (if it’s stained and preppred) before applying two topcoats of low-sheen Resene Walk-on tinted to your Resene colour of choice.

Make a splash

Decks that surround pools and spas come with the additional challenges that water brings. As well as being subject to heavy foot traffic, they may stay consistently wet in the warmer months, so a non-slip finish can be a much needed safety feature. When it comes to colour, you might like to tint hardwearing Resene Walk-on to a shade that helps to differentiate the deck from the edge of your pool, such as light beige Resene Half Bison Hide and pale hemp Resene Quarter Sisal. Since safety is key here, Resene Non-Skid Deck & Path will be a worthwhile addition to prevent slips or you can add Resene SRG grit into Resene Walk-on.

A durable poolside area painted in cool shades of blue

A warm outdoor patio space

Poolside area: For a durable and safe poolside area, consider Resene Walk-on tinted to Resene Half Cut Glass. Wall painted in Resene Black White and the plant pot is in Resene Sea Crest. Jandals by Havaianas, sun lounger by Case from Simon James, house coat from Taylor Road, lean-to hanger from Città, speaker, towel, throw and ottoman from Coast. Project by Amber Armitage, image by Melanie Jenkins.  Patio: In this outdoor patio space, light is bounced around through hero hues and soft highlights. The decking boards stained in Resene Woodsman Uluru bring in warmth from below, where it’s met with pops of earthy colour, including plant pots in green-brown Resene Siam and tea-like Resene Teak. The back wall is in Resene Aspiring with Resene FX Paint Effects Medium mixed with Resene Moon Mist, the right wall, breeze blocks and tall vase are in Resene Moon Mist, the bench seat is in Resene Aspiring; the tray is in Resene Flax and the table is in Resene Teak. Cushions from Allium Interiors and Shut the Front Door. Project by Vanessa Nouwens, image by Wendy Fenwick.

Big deck energy

All your deck needs now is some good-looking accessories such as planters to step things up. Earthy colours are both trending and timeless – try painting pots of various sizes a tonal combination of yellowed clay Resene Half Putty, creamy Resene Putty and rustic tea-brown Resene Teak. Think desert-esque Resene Moroccan Spice or Resene Sandbar or group together several greens such as Resene Earthstone, Resene Frontier and Resene Flax. Just add greenery and you’re away.

August 29, 2020

For expert advice on the products and accessories you need for your deck reboot, visit your local Resene ColorShop or Ask a Resene Tech Expert for assistance.

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