Interior Painting Tips and Tricks

This is a guest post by Nick.

painting tipsPainting the interior of your home can sometimes feel overwhelming and end in less than excellent results. However, when done correctly, you can get extremely professional results and truly transform your home!

Being in the Denver interior painting industry for over 20 years now, Walls by Design owner, Nick May, has gained a lot of valuable knowledge. He is here today to share some of his best painting tips and tricks. So take close notes and enjoy!

Tip #1: Cutting in Baseboards and Ceilings

As tempting as it may be to bust out the roller and start covering the walls, don’t do it. Always cut in your edges first and roll last. Whether you cut in the baseboards or the ceiling first, it doesn’t really matter. However, if you are doing a fairly small room and you are worried about the paint drying too quickly, start on the baseboards, as the edge between the wall and the trim usually take the longest time to dry.

To begin, take a damp cloth and clean all your baseboards and door trim and then allow them to dry completely. In the meantime, lay down proper drop cloths, and cover all furniture as accidents always happen and you want to be prepared. Once the baseboards and trim have dried, apply blue tape and masking paper about a dimes width from the wall, creating as straight of a line as possible. It is best to use one continuous piece of tape on each wall to avoid any gaps or uneven lines. Once the tape is in place, apply a small bead of painters caulk into the crease and smear with your index finger. It is important to press the caulk down quite a bit, almost to the point that it disappears. The reason for the caulk is that it seals off the gap between the baseboards and the blue tape and prevents any seepage from occurring onto your baseboards. If done correctly, when you pull the tape off, you will have a laser sharp line.

Now that your trim is prepped, painting it with a brush will be quick and easy. Hold the brush firmly like a pen, apply a decent amount of paint, and with long brush strokes, paint away my friends! Don’t worry too much about being neat and clean, that’s what the tape and caulk is for. Corners can sometimes be tricky to fully cover and you often have to dab in more paint that usual. Because of this, be sure to wipe out any excess paint with a completely dry brush or at least one that have not been recently loaded with paint. This will help disperse and soak up the excess corner paint.

The most difficult thing to cut in is the ceiling. In fact, it’s a hard technique to describe without the use of a video, but I’ll give it my best shot. First and foremost, if you haven’t done this in the past, I would suggest practicing on your taped off baseboards or door trim to master the technique and hand coordination.

Once you are ready for the ceiling, there is no stopping once you start. Begin by adding just a small amount of paint on the front of the bristles. Make sure it’s enough that the brush will push along easily and cover the area, but don’t get so much that it gushes out everywhere and is dripping down the wall. Push the bristle down so they sort of fan out and place the edge of them right up to where the ceiling and walls meet. Then, with long quick brush strokes, paint away. The slower you go, the more shaky your hands tend to be, which is why I suggest you commit and don’t look back.

A lot of people want to tape and caulk the ceiling like the baseboards. However, this usually ends with paint bleeding under the tape and uneven lines, as it’s much harder to apply tape and caulk to the ceilings compared to the trim. Home improvement stores such as Home Depot or Lowes do sell painting pads that you can glide along the ceiling, but it is difficult to get the line right at the crease of the wall and the ceiling. If you are unable to get a nice straight line, you can always paint your wall and ceiling the same color, eliminating the need for cutting in the ceiling! Practice in this area is really the best way to get excellent results. And if you do make mistakes, be sure you have the ceiling paint on hand for touch-ups.

Tip #2: Folding a Drop Cloth Properly

After you have completely finished painting, clean up begins. Cleaning out and folding a drop cloth properly may seem silly to some people, but honestly it can save you a whole lot of time and headaches.

Step 1: Gather all dirty drop clothes and dump them into one “main” drop cloth.
Step 2: Take the debris filled drop cloth outside and dump it into the trash.
Step 3: Shake out the drop cloth in the street or yard to dispose of any small left over debris.
Step 4: Pick up any large items and dispose of them in the trash.
Step 5: Use a good old fashion broom and dustpan to clean up excess debris.
Step 6: Fold all the drop cloths into each other so the dirty side is facing inward.
Step 7: Fold the cloth lengthwise twice and then fold it into itself until it fits into your particular drop cloth bin.
Step 8: Store drop cloths where appropriate until you need them next time!

While following some of these tips and tricks may seem tedious, they will actually save you a whole lot of time, touch-ups and headaches in the end! And if you decide it’s not worth the time and effort and you just want a professional interior painting company to do it for you, then call someone up in your area! However, be sure to ask them about their experience, techniques, processes, etc. before booking them. Not all interior painting companies are equal!

About the Author

This post was written by Nick May, owner of Walls by Design, a high-end interior painting company located in Denver, Colorado.

Thank you to Nick for helping us keep this blog alive. We couldn’t do it without people like you.

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3 Responses to 'Interior Painting Tips and Tricks'

  1. Luci says:

    These are very handy tips and very timely. We are just about to start painting our house, hopefully to sell this year!
    Luci recently posted..Find the “Right” RealtorMy Profile

    • Lisha says:

      Hi Luci, Thanks for stopping by. I went over and looked through your blog! I love it! Hope you get everything you want in your dream home! Hopefully Kyle and I will one day be doing what you guys are doing :)

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