You've decided to paint a room in your home and you're ready to get started. Or are you? Before you start slapping paint on the walls, check out these painting tips that will make your job easier and make it look like it was done by a pro.
Choosing a color is the hardest part. What's most important is to find one that will create a desired mood and make you happy.
If you're using more than one color in the room remember these paint tips.
If you have a chair rail or wainscoting and you want to paint the top and bottom of the walls different colors it's best to use the darker color on the bottom portion and the lighter on top. The light color will dominate and the dark color will have a grounding effect.
To accentuate trim paint it a shade lighter or a shade darker than the walls. The same goes for the ceiling. Painting it a shade darker will make the room feel cozier, painting it a lighter shade will create an airier feeling.
Don't be afraid to think outside the box and try some different paint effects. There's a lot you can do with paint so there's no need to do the walls all in the same color. Some fun techniques include color blocking, stenciling, and color washing. You can use different colors on the same wall, or for a subtle effect you can use different finishes. For example, try painting a wall in a flat finish and then stenciling a design (such as damask) overtop with a glossy paint. The effect is subtle yet elegant.
Once you've chosen a paint color and design you'll need to decide on a finish (or finishes).
Add the width of all the walls in the room together and multiply the number by the height of one wall (from floor to ceiling). Take the total and subtract the total area of all the doors, windows, archways, etc. This will get you the exact area of wall space you'll need to paint. A general rule of thumb is that a flat surface usually requires one gallon for every 400 square feet. Take into account how many coats you think you'll need to do.
Proper preparation is one of the most important painting tips and is key in getting a professional looking paint job.
It's time consuming but it's worth it. Use painter's tape to tape off the trim, ceilings, windows, doors, and any other necessary areas. It will ensure you get a nice straight line and you don't cross over onto an area you don't want painted.
Always start painting from the highest area to the lowest. Start with the ceiling or top of the walls and work your way down. This way you can catch any drips and it won't ruin a freshly painted wall.
One of the biggest mistakes people make is to put too much paint on the brush. It's far more effective to put a small amount on the brush or roller and use long, even strokes to apply thin coats. It's tempting to slather on a lot of paint in the hopes of not having to do another coat, but the end result won't look as good. Several thin coats will do a better job of covering the walls than one thick coat.
There's some debate on this topic, but quite often the trim can catch some of the spray that comes off of paint rollers. For this reason it's best to paint the trim last since it will be done with a brush and excess paint won't get on the walls.