So your painting sucks?

Often we have little choice but to pick up the brushes ourselves because paying a decorator is out of the question. Challenge is, the last time you painted, the finished result was… well lets say, not as good as it could be, but don’t give up, often the simplest of tips can make the biggest of differences and lets face it, if it really doesn’t look good enough you can always paint over again. Just be sure to let the first attempt fully dry first.

A simple painting tip

When you’ve bought your paint and you’re all set to go, thoroughly mix the paint and pour a little into a clean container. A readily available paint kettle is best of course (that’s a fancy name for a can with a handle to hold your paint in and a hook to hang it from the rung of a ladder). This is truly a simple thing, but it avoids the risk of your can dropping from the top of the steps or ladder and even if the (paint) kettle does get dropped, there won’t be too much paint in it to be a total disaster.

Besides the reduced damage risk for spillage, there is also less weight and you’re not going to find your arm aches, adding to the problems of a poor finish.

As to painting clean lines…

Of course you could always use some masking tape and tape up the straight lines before you even pick up a brush and perhaps I should stop there and tell you that this is a fantastic idea… because it is, however getting a straight line with masking tape is not always that simple.

Let us imagine you are going to paint a wall with two colours. One across the top half and one across the bottom half. Of course applying tape doesn’t guarantee the line will be straight although it’s a start. Instead try identifying the point at which you want the line by eye – where do you fancy the line coming to? Then measure how high that point is and make a pencil mark on the right of the wall. Next measure the same point on the left of the wall. Now take a piece of string that is a bit longer than the wall and rub the string with chalk – a lot of white chalk!

Next either get a friend to hold one end of that chalky string on your pencil mark at the height of the line  where you would like the two paint colours to join or drive a nail in at that point and tie one end of the string to it. Now pull the string taught to the other mark on teh other side and pinching it back from the wall let it “twang” against the wall and “hey presto” you have a sharp straight line on the wall. Now use that line to put your masking tape so it’s over the darker side of the wall (or rather the side of the wall that will be painted darker).

Now you have a straight line, carefully paint the lighter side first. This is because any small runs or errors will be easier to cover with the darker paint later.

Ensure you remove the tape from the darker side whilst the paint is still wet – yes you got that right, removing it when its wet will avoid little problems like being stuck to firmly, thus causing other problems!

Good luck!

Let us know if you have any other painting tips.

avatar Name: Alexandra Eager
About: Formerly Finance and Operations Director of anmarketing agency. Now luckily semi-retired. Amateur interior design buff, constantly experimenting on my own home (much to the chargrins of hubby) and passionate about anything to do with home interiors and improvements. Wish my house was bigger!

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Posts by Alexandra Eager (49)