One of the greatest joys of helping people with specialty building materials is working with our customers and guiding them to products that help them build their dream home. Located on scenic Guemes Island in the San Juan Islands of Washington state, this Pacific Northwest style custom home is nearing completion.
Clad with our hand-split Western Red Cedar shakes, this “cabin in the woods” shows excellent craftsmanship with thoughtful and creative touches, inside as well as out. Used for many years in the Pacific Northwest, our Western Red Cedar shakes will provide many years of carefree service for this home’s exterior.
The interior is clad with Douglas Fir tongue and groove, which adds to the feeling of being right at home in the trees on this secluded island, which is only accessible by boat or ferry.
A special “Thank You” to the Casey family for allowing us to participate in your project and for sharing these fantastic photos! So beautiful!
Before your next project, be sure to visit us! We specialize in providing customers all over the United States with Pacific Northwest, coastal grown Western Red Cedar, Alaska Yellow Cedar, and Douglas Fir building materials.
As we come and go in our busy daily lives, we often stop seeing our surroundings through other’s eyes. A neglected front porch that accumulates miscellaneous odds and ends may not seem like a big deal, but to a new visitor or potential buyer, it can be a real turn-off. Even on a budget, some small touches, such as a good cleaning and a fresh coat of paint on the front door, can really boost the first impression. And, with the addition of a few furnishings, your porch can add real value, creating a welcoming transitional space between the outdoors and indoors.
Even a small porch can be made to feel welcoming by updating the light fixture, adding a fun little sign, and a well-placed chair, as seen in this picture.
After a good freshening up, consider your porch’s size and your home’s architectural details. You want to make sure people can easily access the steps and front door and not feel crowded with too much furniture or accessories. You will also want to create a style that compliments the exterior of the home and reflects the personality of the home’s interior.
For those lucky enough to have a big front porch, making it into additional usable living space can be challenging. For years, the porch at our house was left totally blank, other than a seasonal wreath on the door and a welcome mat. I had this idea in my head that it needed to be accessorized with beautiful rocking chairs, wicker love seats and tables, fantastic carpets, lush ferns, and gorgeous potted plants just like in the magazines. I wanted it all but wasn’t ready to pay the $2,000+ to create that style. Finally, I began to look at items I already owned and scoured second-hand stores to find items in my budget that would turn my porch from a boring entry to a bonus living area for our home. Now, our front porch has become my favorite room, and I look forward to freshening it up each season by changing the plants and other accessories.
A customer of ours in Florida sent us this picture to let us know how amazing the
custom stained Western Red Cedar Shingles we provided look on her home (p.s. we love
customer photos!). I adore the sweet style she created on her porch with the vintage day bed and loads of pillows. She lives close to the ocean, so the simple addition of some “beachy” accessories completes this outdoor space perfectly. Note how the color palette of accessories complements the shingles, which we custom coated with a semi-transparent stain called Water Lily. So inviting!
So, when you go home tonight, take a good, hard look at your entry and begin to think of items you already own that you might be able to add to bring a little personality and style to your front porch. Scour garage sales or thrift stores for a fun piece of furniture, and maybe add a fresh coat of paint to the piece to bring additional color to your porch. Next, add some softness with pillows, candles (I buy the inexpensive ones at the Dollar Store), seasonal flowers, and accessories.
In North America, shingles and shakes are typically made from California redwood (Sequoia sempervirens), Western Red Cedar (Thuja plicata), and in some cases, Alaskan Yellow Cedar (Cupressus nootkatensis); while in Scandinavia and Central Europe, they are more commonly made from Pine (Pinus sylvestris). Shingles are made from blocks that have been edge cut using a circular saw, whereas shakes are split. Shingles can be used on roofs, as well as sidewalls.
Shingles are manufactured by clamping blocks of wood into a carriage that slides back and forth across a blade, tilting and moving the block closer to the blade with each pass to automatically form a tapered cut that is thin on one end and thicker on the other. The thickness at the“butt” (the thicker end of the shingle) is generally about 3/8” but does vary. The final correct thickness for shingles is based using a stack of shingles rather than a single piece.
At Cedar Country Lumber, we offer a wide selection of shingles made from Western Red Cedar, as well as Alaskan Yellow Cedar, that will help you achieve the look you desire in a wide range of price points; from custom-cut, dried, and colored shingles to utility-grade shingles that are much easier on the pocketbook, but perform admirably in any climate.
In today’s market place, Western Red and Alaskan Yellow Cedar Shingles are available in 3 common lengths
16” ~ Also known as “Fivex”
18” ~ Also known as “Perfection”
24” ~ Also known as “Royals”
After the shingles are cut, they are graded into three main categories when using the Cedar Shake & Shingle Bureau’s Certi-label grading system.
Number 1 ~ Also known as “Blue Label”
Number 2 ~ Also known as “Red Label”
Number 3 ~ Also known as “Black Label”
Number 1 ~ the highest grade of shingles are 100% heartwood, 100% clear, and 100% edge grain. Western Red Cedar Shingles in this grade are sometimes referred to as “Blue Label”, which is a Registered Certi-label trademark. These are available in 16”, 18”, and 24” lengths in either Western Red Cedar or Alaskan Yellow Cedar. Our No. 1 Shingles are also available with a pressure-impregnated fire retardant or preservative treatment.
Number 2 ~ a perfectly acceptable grade for many applications. Some flat grain and limited sapwood are permitted. However, there is not less than 10” clear on 16” shingles, 11” on 18’ shingles, and 16” on 24” shingles. Western Red Cedar Shingles within this grade are sometimes referred to as “Red Label”.
Number 3 ~ a utility-grade for economy applications; commonly used on sheds and utilitarian buildings or for starter courses for higher grades. Within this grade, there is not less than 6” clear on 16” and 18” shingles, 10” clear on 24” shingles. This grade of Western Red Cedar Shingles are sometimes referred to as “Black Label” due to the grading system put into place by the Cedar Shake & Shingle Bureau.
Sidewall Cedar Shingles
Rebutted & Rejoined Cedar Shingles ~ Shingles that are sawn and re-manufactured on all four sides to ensure square butts and parallel edges for a superior appearance on sidewall applications. Rebutted and Rejoined Shingles are available in Number 1 and Number 2 grades and are available in all three lengths (16”, 18”, and 24”). These Shingles are commonly referred to as “R&R’s” and are predominately provided Kiln Dried and packaged in cartons rather than bundles.
craftsmanship by Ravenhill Construction
If desired, Western Red Cedar R&R Shingles can be provided with a sanded or machine grooved face, as well as pre-primed or pre-stained in nearly every color and hue imaginable. There are also 6 “off the shelf” colors of pre-stained shingles that you can choose from.
craftsmanship by Impel Construction
Fancy Cut Western Red Cedar Shingles ~ manufactured from #1 Western Red Cedar shingles into a variety of shapes that are 3” & 5” widths cut from 18” & 24” lengths; offered in 8 different shapes, with an endless variety of custom cuts and finishes available. These shingles add unique charm and character to gable ends, balconies, fences, entryways, interior, and exterior walls. To find out more, please click HERE.
Because Western Red Cedar and Alaskan Yellow Cedar is only grown in the Pacific Northwest, where Cedar Country is located, we are YOUR premium source for Cedar Shingles and Shakes. We ship nationwide from one bundle or carton to full truckloads and extremely competitive pricing ~ even with freight.