Monday, November 17, 2008

It ain't easy being green.

green boards & butterflies_7117

The experiment with paving paint for my new tap boards has not been wholly successful, sad to say. The green looks nice and, at Le @ Third On the Right's suggestion, I did in fact end up adding a decorative stencil (pretty butterflies, in silver and purple) which pleased my students, particularly the very small ones, no end. So that was the good part.

But then....

When we first got them into the hall, we found minor bowing had occurred. We couldn't see it when they were arrayed round our backyard but when we laid them down side by side there were a multitude of small ripples - an accident waiting to happen. Fortunately I came armed with gaffer tape which subdued the undulation somewhat and after a few nights of storing them side up they have flattened out nicely. Phew.

Next, I began to realise that paving paint seems not to be any tougher than plain paint and this is rather disappointing, given that added toughness was pretty much the whole point. I've had them for 2 weeks now and the paint is already quite chipped.

Finally, and maybe worst of all, paving paint has turned out to be MUCH MORE SLIPPERY. So much so that it caused a sliding frenzy (where they were doing it on purpose to impress each other) in the Junior Shufflers class and one of its members who shall remain nameless but who is my eldest son put the tip of their tap shoe into the plasterboard and made a nasty whole therein. Hello spackfiller.

tap toe-sized hole_7116

I am still trying to work out the best solution to the whole problem, but in the meantime, and on the advice of a friend who runs a ballet school, I have taken to washing the boards with Ajax (floor detergent) and Coca-cola. I said wouldn't lemonade do? and she said no it has to be coke. So coke it was. I was very afraid that I'd come in the next day to find the boards crawling with ants, but can only assume that blending the detergent with the sugar is what kept the critters away. Anyway, the coke floor was much more effective than the hairspray on the students' tap shoes. Although possibly the fact that I'd inadvertently bought a "non-sticky" hairspray (D'oh) might have unfairly rigged that comparison...

Millie's shoes
Still, the green comes up nicely in the photos.


  1. Oh, that coca cola will eat through anything. It's notorious.

    Gorgeous boards, even so.

  2. All that painting and those kids are chipping it away.

    My Pete says that any paint sits on top of wood - it never soaks in. Only an oil, like linseed oil, will soak right in. He knows stuff...

  3. That last photo is absolutely fantastic ...

    an advertisement for your school if ever I saw one..

  4. Oooh, I want that little girls leggings! Course, they would give me tree trunk legs but still.... (sighs wistfully)

    I'm relieved to hear the coke solution worked.

  5. I totally, absolutely, unreservedly, emphatically, wholeheartedly....agree with Mary about that last photo.

  6. My sister (the photographer) took it. I love it too. There's a few more nice ones over at my Flickr site, and a heap more on my hard-drive.

  7. Me too on the photo. Just gorgeous.
    Is that the same sister who has horses? Does she photograph horse shows?
    I'm surprised the coke didn't eat right through the boards overnight.

  8. Ooh, lovely shot!

    Are Climbers toes okay?

  9. Tsk,tsk! Who knew that being a dance teacher would require knowledge of such technicalities......I, too, love that photo!

  10. He's fine. Tap shoes are 'blocked' at the toe, and plasterboard is soft. And he was also very repentant and helped me with the spackfiller.

  11. came in to say how much I love that photo - only to find everyone already said it.


  12. Coke and detergent? Fascinating! I learn something every time I come by.

    That closeup you took of the girl's leggings and shoes is a winner, by the way.

  13. Just LOVE the last photo. LOVe LOVE.

    Pity about the paving paint not working out. Surely there is an indestructable paint out there? I bet if you'd painted it a really fugly colour it would never have chipped! (such is life)

  14. Instead of repeating that the last photo is absolutely gorgeous (which it definitely is!) I will add that I loved your purple chairs (yes, I have been away a little while!) and am very envious of the $5 Mariana Hardwick dress.

  15. Me with the last photo too.

    I suggested it before - but how about textured paint - the ones that are called things such as "Tuscan Effects" .. or throwing a handfull of fine-grade sand into the current mix ( trust me, this is all 'tuscan effects' is anyway ).

    Is that any good for tapping .. or not quite any good at all, so I should STFU ?

    It's all i've got :/

  16. Have you talked to the dudes at the paint shop?

    You need a Real Paint Shop, as in one that just sells paint, and the sort of old guy that talks out of the side of his mouth.

    He'll know what to do.

  17. To stop the bowing of the boards you need to paint both sides ie the underside. Good advice and products can be found at the lovely 'real' paint shop on Gertrude St, opp Porters.

  18. loving the pics :) butterflies very sweet, wee tapper at end should be a calander pic or something.

    Think I might off tap to the boys next year - I am moving dance schools as I am grumpy with all the costs associated with the EOY concert - adult tickets $37.50 each and kids - all kids $32.50 - so $172 something for me, MIC and boys and nanna to go see three mins of performance .... blah

    Wish you were Bne based !!


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