Tackling the task without first cleaning and prepping the walls wastes time and money! Grease spots from cooking oil, crayon marks, and even fingerprints can soak through the newly decorated surface, leaving it looking patchy and discolored. Dust and debris can prevent paint from adhering correctly and cause an uneven finish. Additionally, covering over cracked or flaking areas can cause the new coat to peel away. Though it will add time to the beginning of the project, consider sanding and cleaning with a sugar soap solution, white vinegar, or a paste made from cornstarch and rubbing alcohol for really stubborn stains. Expert painters also suggest using a dedicated primer (instead of paint-and-primer combinations) to ensure a smooth opaque finish.
2. Make Perfect Lines with Paint Tape
Most people already know that using masking tape (or specialized painters tape, which can be purchased from any hardware store) helps to avoid messy workmanship and unsightly streaks. But waiting too long to remove the adhesive barrier can pull away chunks of freshly dried paint as well. Professionals suggest taking a craft knife and making a gentle cut where the trim meets the new color. That way, there will be a nice clean line when you peel the tape away from the wall!
3. Plan Ahead for Consistent Color
When taking on a bigger room, it can be necessary to use multiple cans of paint. Because of the way the color is mixed at the store, variations of base used can make the shade of each can significantly different. When trying to achieve a seamless look, get a large container and mix all the cans together before you begin. That way, you won't wind up with varying hues on each wall-or worse, patches of dark and light on the same surface!
4. Remove the Fuzz; Remove the Hassle
When using older brushes or rollers, give them a wash first to avoid transferring dust. New roller covers should also be prepped before use since they may have a layer of fine fluff that detaches the first time you use them. When this fuzz mixes with that gorgeous new green earmarked for the bedroom, the result is a bumpy mess. A tip from the experts? Wrap the roller cover in masking tape and peel away the excess fluff before use.
5. Time the Project Carefully
Properly doing a DIY project is seldom quick and easy. Cutting corners may save time, but without correct preparation, the results will be less than stellar. It's especially important to be mindful of time constraints if painting needs to be completed before moving into a new home. Once all those boxes and furniture are in place, decorating will be far more difficult! Trying to get things done fast and to a high standard? It's always worth calling a professional, particularly if you're dealing with an oddly-shaped space, high ceilings, elaborate molding, or exterior walls.
Following these tips can help turn a house into a dream home!
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