You’ve got a total of 30 friends coming over for Thanksgiving Dinner, and you were drinking one night and offered to cook the whole meal, nobody is to bring anything but a good attitude. Would it be okay, as you prepare the food, to include all of the steps and ingredients, but, do them in a different order than what the recipe calls for? I hope, for the sake of your reputation as the host, or hostess, that you scream, “No Way!” Surely you wouldn’t plan your meal that way and neither should you tackle your painting projects that way. There is an order for painting an entire room, that if followed, will save time, money, and the end result will look professionally done; every Do It Yourselfers’ main objective.
It’s very simple: ceilings, trim, walls, ceilings trim, walls, say it with me, ceilings, trim, walls, okay, breathe out. Let’s imagine a 15×15 room, 2 windows, 2 doors, base moulding, and a flat, 9 foot ceiling. What should we do first?
(If not sure, go back to beginning of post:) ). Ceilings, of course, here are two reasons why: If you do your walls first and then paint the ceiling, you will inevitably get ceiling paint on your finished walls. Reason number two: when you cut in your walls at the end, it is very simple to get a perfectly straight line on walls to ceiling. If done in reverse, the lines look terrible, yes, it can be done, but it’s a lot harder, and more time consuming to get a professional look.
You can brush and roll the ceilings, or you can spray them, most homeowners do not have spray rigs so we’ll just concentrate on the brush and roll technique here. Start with your brush, cut in the edges where the wall meets the ceiling, and for your sake, GET SOME CEILING PAINT ON THE WALL ALL THE WAY AROUND THE ROOM. Yes, that’s right, make sure you come down on the wall with ceiling paint, 1/2 inch is fine, no less though.
* The ceilings in the picture were sprayed, so the paint comes down on the wall about six inches, when brushing corners on ceilings, you just need to come down on the wall a half inch or so. Notice the same technique for the trim on the door jamb, and on the base board. #tricktostraightpaintlines
You might think it looks sloppy, and rightfully so, for now, it may, but this will ensure a straight line when you cut in walls, and there will be no light spots. Cut in all ceiling fans, vents, can lights, etc… Then roll your ceiling. Assuming you know how to roll, I will move on, and save that “how-to” for another post.
The next step is to paint your trim. If you know what kind of paint is on them now, and are just freshening up, sand lightly and use the same paint. If you’re not sure what kind of paint is on there now, OIL PRIME THE TRIM! It will save you a huge headache in the future. If adhesion is not good, your fresh new paint job will peel off in sheets, and trust me, if you have little children, they will find out fast, and have a peel party in no time flat. Oil based primer should run twenty to thirty dollars at your local paint store. For this size of room, only one gallon will be needed, and you will have some left over for your next project. As with the ceilings, don’t worry about bringing your primer, and finish trim paint, out on the walls a little bit, in fact, make sure that you do, your cut in lines will look great in the end. If you are not so great at cutting in your windows next to the glass, mask off the glass with some 1 inch tape. I don’t recommend scraping paint off of the windows when finished, because it will expose raw wood and can allow moisture to set in and peel your paint down the road. After you have oil primed your window, sand to smooth, dust or vacuum off, then repeat with your finish enamel. At this point, you can choose between latex acrylic, or an alkyd enamel.
Now, you’re almost done with your project, all that is left is to cut in and roll the walls. Start by masking off your baseboards with 1 1/2 inch tape. Some painters mask everything; baseboards, window trim, door jambs, and that’s okay, in fact, for a homeowner that doesn’t have the intention on becoming a journeyman painter, but still wants a room that doesn’t look like a hack did it, masking is a very good option and will save you some time, and give you straight lines; use “3M Original Blue.” A little pricey for tape, but comes off nice and doesn’t allow paint to bleed through very much. Next, spackle any nail holes that are present, and sand walls with a sanding pole if possible.
Now it’s time for the walls, your project is on the downhill slope now, cut in a wall completely; ceiling, corners, base, and trim. Now roll that same wall. Whenever I can, which is 90% of the time, I cut in the wall and then immediately roll it, As opposed to cutting in the entire room, and then rolling the entire room. I do this for two main reasons:
- I typically paint two coats on all of my projects, doing this will allow me to have the first wall that I painted in the room, dry by the time I get all the other walls finished, and allow me to immediately put on my second coat. If I rolled all of the walls at the same time, I would have to wait until everything dries for putting on my second coat-time is money!
- There is a rule to all painting: Keep A Wet Edge. If you cut in and roll one wall at a time, the paint from the cut in and the roll, will dry together, and alleviate “hat-banding,” where you can see a slight difference in color from cut in to roll. Never a good thing.
Now that your room is finished being painted, pull your tape, and touch up anywhere that paint has bled thru your masking tape, sweep up and enjoy your handiwork! This will make you smile a little: by painting your room yourself, you just saved yourself around $1200.00!
If this has helped you in any way, please send cash to:
Brack Painting Contractors
5555 Walla Walla Washington.