Painting tips: Paint with ease
With some brushstrokes of paint here and some rolling there, you finish your room's first coat of paint. As you reach for that well-deserved beverage, you notice paint splotches on the ceiling, roller lapmarks on the walls and primer peaking through. You could use some painting tips.
"The majority of people go into painting thinking there's nothing to it," says Jerry Aleksic, owner of Artistic Design Decorators, a Toronto-based painting and wallpapering specialist for over 55 years. "Then they're in the midst of doing it [painting] and they notice something is wrong."
Not anymore -- we have expert painting tips for you.
Selecting a colour
Paint may be the cheapest way to refresh a room but it certainly isn't the easiest thing to decide on. First, look at paint chips in artificial and natural light. Then, buy a quart of good quality paint. Jerry says cheap paint spatters and will take more coats to cover. Test the chosen colour on a few three-by-three foot areas in the room. When the paint is dry, look at it in the morning, afternoon and evening to determine whether the colour works for you.
Strip the room, and cover any remaining furniture and the floor with dropcloths. For the best paint adhesion, wash walls, doors and trim with a light detergent solution, rinse well with a damp cloth and let dry thoroughly. Sand any glossy finishes, such as doors, window sashes and trim, and remove dust with a tack cloth. "Sixty per cent of the work is proper preparation," says Jerry. "Sanding and plastering are just as important as painting."
Spread compound over any bubbles or scaling paint, and smooth with a putty knife until flush with the surface. For gaps and cracks in molding, apply compound but use your finger to smooth, as you won't be able to sand in this area.
Don't forget to remove doorknobs, coverplates and ceiling-light rings for a clean paint job.
For best results, always begin with a primer. Jerry recommends tinting this undercoat to the colour of your paint so that you can see what the colour is going to look like. "If you don't like it you can change it with your finish coats," he says.
With your windows open and a fan on, saturate a trim brush and "cut" a three-inch border on the ceiling along one wall. Fill in the ceiling near the border with a saturated roller, moving it in a "W" formation.
If you have a partner helping, one of you should cut, while the other rolls to maintain a wet edge for blending. Complete the entire ceiling before taking a break.
When the ceiling is dry (allow 24 hours) mask its edges with painter's tape. Cut into the wall with your brush and roll to fill in. Always start rolling in the middle of the wall, not the top or the bottom, says Jerry. This way, any excess paint can be rolled out.
Next come the windows. Tape the edges and use a sash brush with a small amount of paint. Complete the room by painting the doors with a three-inch brush, and the trim and baseboards with a two-inch trim brush. Apply at least two coats of finish to all surfaces.
If you used an oil-based paint, first rinse brushes with solvent, then in soapy water until the water runs clear. (Do this outside with a hose, to avoid pouring solvent down the drain.) Latex paints don't need solvent. When dry, wrap brushes in heavy paper.
For rollers, remove the covers and submerge in solvent. When they are clean, rinse them in detergent until water runs clear. Don't forget to wash the frame.
Now you're done - and not a bubble or drip in sight.