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This Modern Pine Cabin is Stained Black with Natural Tree Resin

Arango Black Cabin 5

There are so many ways to change the look of pine. Extraordinarily adaptable, this prized softwood can be finished using a wide variety of techniques for virtually any application. Give it a fun faux finish for a cloud-like result, tuck it between layers of straw and age it over time for warm “pumpkin” tones, speed up the aging process manually or treat it with any number of stains. You can even intentionally char pine to give it a blackened finish with enhanced resistance to insects, water and mold. Now, let’s check out what it looks like when darkened in a different way.

Architect Alfonso Arango built a small, 258-square-foot weekend retreat for his own use beside his childhood home overlooking the Andes mountains in Colombia. “House on the Mist” is a compact cabin with simple lines, a grassy green roof and a glass block wall that lets in lots of natural light while maintaining privacy inside.

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Arango says he treated the all-pine exterior with a product made from pine tree resin, which is used for waterproofing wood and traditionally used to protect fishing boats. But the coolest benefit, aside from its natural origin, might be the fact that it scents the house, too. Arango says the pine resin smell combines with cold winds that come down from the mountain and a subtle eucalyptus scent from the interior finishings.

Also known as pine tar or pine rosin, this finish is 100% organic and has a gentle antiseptic effect. It can be thinned 50/50 with purified raw linseed oil and applied warm, as seen in the video above by Earth+Flax Studio, and colors range from a lightly stained effect to stark, dramatic black.

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Arango’s project gives us an interesting example of pine tar used for an entire building exterior for an effect that’s similar to paint, but achieved with all natural materials. It’s pretty cool that the wood and the stain come from the same great species of tree.


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