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How to paint.

Yes, Really.  I know it’s not hard,  but I have been in home remodeling for a few years now, and I’ve picked up a few tips to not only get it done quickly, but done professionally as well.

Linsi wanted a wall in our office to have a little color for some upcoming product shots.  We ended up getting a couple quarts of this low VOC paint at Home Depot.  I swear, Martha has her hands in everything.  Anyway, it didn’t smell, and went on the wall in one coat without using a primer.  It’s good paint.  BTW, we didn’t end up using one of her colors, we picked a Behr chip, and they matched it for us.

Tip #1 Get one of these!  (seen ready to use in the second pic below)  The edges are always done first.  Corners, the ceiling and around trim should be done first and you roll the wall last.  Professional painters will “cut-in” the ceilings and trim, but in my opinion this $2.50 tool is faster, and does a better job.

Load the edger with paint, scrape off excess on the edge of the paint tray, then “sneak up on” the edge that you will be trimming.  See pic below.   If you smash the edger straight into the trim or ceiling, it will ooze out where you don’t want it.  Always go in one direction, because backing up mid-pass can have its consequences.  I go left to right.  I then make another pass over the same area if it looks like it needs it.  If you practice on an inconspicuous area, you can get a feel for what is the right amount of paint to have on the pad without fear of seeing your mistakes for the next 10 years.  Be gentle with it and use a light touch.

The 2nd (and last) tip is about using a roller.  A regular size roller will cover about a 3′ x 4′ area before it runs out of paint.  If your walls are 8′ high, you start at the ceiling, do your 3 x 4 area and do another one below before moving over again.   The trick is to put the freshly loaded and dripping roller  about 3′ away from the area you just painted and work your way back over to the wet area.  See pic below.  You then blend it all together with a pass or two and move on.

I painted a 14′ x 8′ area in 45 minutes and didn’t use any painters tape.  I covered the carpet with a tarp and kept a wet rag around to clean off the few drips that did hit the baseboard.  Have fun!

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