Painting: How to Do It Right the First Time

How many times have you watched those home design shows before? Whether it’s a big remodel project or a small room makeover, painting is usually involved.  However, painting seems like such a quick and easy task that we often don’t find out how to do it correctly!  HGTV covered this problem in their magazine article, “So You Think You Can Paint,” and also on their online guide (here), which both provide some great instructional tips so that when it’s our turn to paint, it gets done correctly the first time.

To Prime or Not to Prime…

We all know that primer has to go on before the first coat of paint, but is it always necessary to use?  Here are keys to knowing when to pull out that can of primer and when it is just not needed.

If the wall has never been painted, has some spots on it, or is a darker color than the paint you’ll be using, then get that primer going!

If the wall you are going to paint is already white and clean or if the paint color you will be using is much darker than the current paint, save your time and primer for another day.

Tape to the Rescue!

Have you ever tried to draw a straight line?  Not so easy and not a great idea to try when you have a paint brush in your hand!  Thankfully, painter’s tape provides an easy solution to this dilemma and saves you the time and stress of trying to be perfect.  When you use painter’s tape, there are some tricks to making sure it works the right way.

  • Don’t let paint bleed! Make sure that painter’s tape is adhered to the wall when you apply it and double-check by running a credit card along the tape to secure the edges.
  • Cover anything you don’t want paint on!  That means everything from hinges to switches (after the switch plates are removed).  If you think there’s a chance paint could get on it, use the tape.
  • Most importantly, don’t remove the tape too soon.  Letting the paint dry completely will allow for a flawless finish when the tape is removed.

Follow the Right Order

You know how everyone has their own order for washing a car?  Some start at the top and work their way down, while others decide to start in the middle and spread out.  Well, when it comes to painting a room, there is one way to do it!  Follow these steps and you won’t work yourself into a corner at the wrong time.

  1. Start with the ceiling
  2. Move to the molding, trim, and baseboards
  3. Cut in (with a brush) around the ceilings and trim
  4. Wall (the fun part!)
  5. Second coat on walls (after the first coat has thoroughly dried)
  6. Any doors, woodwork or floors that you want to paint
  7. Clean up

What to Use

With any painting job, it is vital to select the right tools to help you get the job done.  There are several brushes and rollers that you will need for different aspects of the job, so here is a quick list of what to get and why:

  • Sponge Brushes
  • Angled Brushes
  • Sponge Rollers
  • Nap Rollers

Depending on your needs, you may need some or all of these brushes and rollers, which come in various sizes for specific jobs.  Here is a great resource from HGTV for more information about types of brushes and rollers, how to clean them properly, and additional tools for larger spaces.

What has been your experience with painting?  If you have a room you are wanting to paint, will you hire a professional or do you feel you can take on the challenge yourself?  Let us know how you will approach your next paint project!

If you need some decorating or remodeling advice, please come in to our showroom and talk with one of our great designers. We are here to help!