It’s a big decision to tackle an interior paint job on your own. Finding all the right supplies and knowing exactly how to go about completing the project can be difficult. Here are a few tips to make your job a little easier:
Proper preparation is key to the success of any paint job. Part of that includes making sure your surfaces are clean of any dirt or grime. A simple and inexpensive way to do this is to purchase a tack cloth. Made of cheesecloth which has been infused with beeswax, tack cloth can be used for wiping down walls, removing any debris or dirt. The same result can be achieved by using a damp cloth, but you’ll have to make sure it is neither too wet nor too dry.
Another preparatory step which you’ll appreciate at the completion of your project is that of dipping your paintbrush. Depending on what type of paint you’re using, you’ll clean your brushes with different solutions, like water or mineral spirits. A quick dip of your brush into your cleaning solvent will keep the paint from adhering so strongly to the brush, making your clean up job easier and quicker.
On the topic of cleaning paintbrushes, it’s no fun. After a long day of painting, no one wants to stand over a cleaning bucket or sink washing out brushes or rollers. It’s messy and time-consuming, and many people simply dispose of their tools rather than dealing with the frustration, which can be costly. For short-term jobs, it’s an easy task to simply store your brushes overnight without cleaning them. There are two methods which can be used if you’re planning to resume your work within a day or two:
-Freeze your brushes. By inserting the brush or roller end into a ziplock bag and putting it into the freezer, you can temporarily preserve it for use later. There’s no need to clean it, and you can relax until it’s time to get back to work.
-If you don’t feel comfortable placing paint-filled brushes in your freezer with your food, there is another option. Wrap it in plastic or place it in a ziplock bag, as airtight as possible. You should be able to use the brush a few hours later without any problem.
Here are a few other hints and tips for a stress-free painting experience:
-If you’re the type of worker who ends up with paint all over your hands at the end of the day, there are a couple of ways to avoid the inevitable harsh hand washing. One option is to wear latex or plastic gloves. Either will protect your hands up to the wrist, and they allow full mobility so you can still attend to those delicate details. If wearing gloves doesn’t appeal to you, you can still reduce the time spent scrubbing. Just apply a thick layer of lotion to your hands before beginning to paint, and they’ll be easier to clean later.
-To avoid lines or overlapping marks in your paint, make sure you work quickly enough to keep a wet edge. This means painting from wet, workable paint, rather than starting a new line over dry layer.
Keeping this tip in mind will help you finish with a smooth, even paint job, rather than having to deal with unsightly stripes.
-Painting can be expensive, but you don’t want to skimp on cheap tools. Cheap brushes will leave lines and streaks, and sometimes even shed bristles into your wet paint. Cheap roller covers will do the same, leaving bits of fuzz and fluff on your freshly painted surface. Take the time to find out which brush or roller is right for your paint and surface, and pay for better quality.
-It’s hard to know if a surface that has been painted in the past will need to be scraped or can be painted over. Sometimes a paint job can look okay while the paint weakens. An easy test is the duct tape test.
Take a short strip of duct tape and stick it to the surface you intend to paint. Rip it away quickly and inspect the results. Any sizeable flakes of paint are a sign that the previous paint job won’t hold up, and the surface will need to be scraped.
-For ease in the actual painting process, establish an order of surfaces first. Painting trim before walls just doesn’t make sense, and painting doors before frames is a sure way to become frustrated. This order of painting has been used by many professionals to make sure the process moves along as neatly and efficiently as possible. First, get the ceilings out of the way. Next, tackle the big wall spaces, and then the trim. If you’re painting cabinets, take care of them next, and finally paint any doors that are part of your project.
Employing these helpful tricks can make your project go smoothly and effortlessly, so you can save your energy for enjoying your new space when it’s all done!