Burn baby burn
Updated: Nov 3, 2020
No, this isn't an evil chant, but a a technique I've been using recently yet its origins are quite ancient. Shou sugi ban (焼杉板) originated in Japan in the 18th century primarily as way to treat cedar siding to make it weatherproof. The technique—which involves charring a wood surface to render it a deep charcoal-black—has caught on recently as a treatment for contemporary exteriors and indoor furnishings alike. I've used this in exterior window boxes, interior shelving and my fence. The charring basically cauterizes the wood creating a weatherproof seal between the wood and the elements. And, it looks damn cool if I do say so myself. Give it a try sometime, just make sure you're safe and have water nearby, just in case something else is feeling a little char-envy.