Everyone can try their hand at painting. The quality of the end result, however, may vary like hues on a color wheel. If your paint job leaves much to be desired, consider these three painting principles and tips that can have you dripping with confidence and rolling through your next painting project.
Using Painter’s Tape
To achieve straight, sharp paint lines painter’s tape is the answer. Use the tape to outline the edges of the areas where you don’t want paint, and you’re good to go. Skipping this all-important prep step can result in rough and crooked paint lines, and paint on your trim. Once you’ve finished painting it’s important that you remove the tape within a few hours, because if it stays on too long the paint may stick to the tape and cause you to remove portions of the paint as you peel off the tape.
Tip: If you’ve damaged parts of your paint job while removing painter’s tape simply sand the damaged areas until they’re smooth, wipe away the dust with a damp cloth, and repaint those areas.
Applying a Primer
Although you’re eager to see that new paint color on your walls, consider taking the time to apply a primer first. A primer can provide a solid foundation that hides the previous color—especially an extremely dark or bright pigment, and allows you to roll on an even coat of your new paint. It can also help the new color to stick to the surface better, and it can enhance its durability.
Tip: If you didn’t prime your walls and the new color looks to have a streaky finish, let your paint dry for at least four hours, or overnight, then apply an additional coat.
Using Drop Cloths on Floors, and Plastic on Furniture
The new color on your walls looks great. In the process of painting, though, your uncovered floors and furniture became dotted with drips and speckled with splatters. A little prep on the front end of your painting project could’ve spared you that headache. Always protect your room by spreading drop cloths on the floor and covering your furniture with plastic.
Tip: You can easily remove wet paint from wood floors using a damp cloth. If the paint has dried on the floor, gently scrape it up. You can also use a solvent that’s safe for wood floors—just test it out first on a small part of your floor that, for the most part, is out of view.
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