Everybody likes to think they can paint. Unfortunately, when we go to try our hand at sprucing up a room for the first time, there are runs and brush marks everywhere. So, before tackling your own DIY painting job, have a look through this list of do's and don'ts to pick up some handy tips.
Prep is important
Arguably the most arduous task when it comes to painting is preparing your surface before the first coat. This can entail sanding down the wood or other material with several grades of sandpaper, as well as wiping down with alcohol or water, depending on the material you are painting. Poor surface prep can lead to lumps and bumps showing through the paint, as well as poor adhesion, with the coat wearing thin in some areas faster than others.
Don't pull out the plastic
No, we're not talking about the credit card - you'll need that for the painting supplies. We're talking about drop cloths. If you use plastic tarps or something similar, you'll find that paint stays wet for a long time and gets walked around the house - making for a very messy job. Pro painters use cotton drop cloths which absorb wet paint quickly, keeping it off the floor and furniture and stopping you from tracking it throughout the house.
Many modern paints come with a built in primer, which can often mean simply applying more coats to get the same effect as a primed and painted wall or surface. If you're using a system that requires a base coat, see if you can get a tinted primer close to your desired colour. This will result in fewer coats to achieve a nice, solid hue - meaning your walls look nice and fresh, instead of caked with paint.
This is how we roll
Working around trim is where most of us fall down. Firstly, you should mask off your trim areas when painting. Also, you should use an electric sander to get the trim surface ready to paint at the outset and a soft, hand sander to buff it between coats.
But when painting the wall next to the trim, a lot of us rely on brushes to bridge the gap. This can result in an uneven and ugly transition from the rollered wall surface to the brushed borders of the room. Rather, try and find a small roller or foam painting-tool that will take you right to the edge without losing that smooth, consistent finish.