You don’t need to be an expert to paint a room in your home.
Even the best interior painters started somewhere. Interior painting is more challenging than it looks.
However, by following some interior painting tips, you can quickly improve your painting skills.
Here are our best interior painting tips for beginners.
1) Master the W Technique: When using a paint roller, you’ll want to apply paint to your walls using a W shape. It seems weird, but this is the best way to apply paint to a large surface without creating noticeable lines. Use your paint roller to paint a W shape, then fill in the remaining spaces vertically without lifting your roller from the wall. Repeat until you’ve covered the full wall. That’s the W technique.
2) Remove the Painter’s Tape Right Before or After the Paint Dries: Don’t remove the painter’s tape too early, as it will lead to leaks and drips onto the area you were trying to protect. Don’t remove the painter’s tape too late, as it could leave behind residue. Instead, remove the painter’s tape right before the paint dries or immediately after it dries.
3) Lightly Sand the Walls: You may want to sand rougher walls to prepare them for painting. Some people sand walls before applying primer. Others sand the walls after applying primer. It’s up to you. Generally, if you notice bumps and ridges on your walls before you start painting, you should use a fine-grit sandpaper to remove those bumps and ridges. Some people even sand the trim between coats to create an ultra-smooth finish. If you’re sanding between coats, make sure to vacuum the trim to avoid sawdust stuck within your paint.
4) Paint from Top to Bottom: When painting a room in your home, always paint from top to bottom. If you’re painting the ceiling, then start with the ceiling before moving to the walls and lower levels.
5) Paint your Ceiling with a Grid Approach: You should paint your walls using a W or V pattern. When painting your ceiling, however, you should use a grid approach. Mark off sections that are approximately 3 to 6 square feet in area. This is a good size to keep the edges wet while ensuring an even coat.
6) Mix Paint in One Container: You might have bought six cans of the same paint, but that doesn’t mean the paint will look exactly the same when applied to your walls. Mix the paint together into one container, stirring thoroughly. Otherwise, your walls could look uneven.
7) Paint the Trim First: Up above, we suggested starting from the top and working your way to the bottom. That’s true, but you should also start with the trim first anywhere in your room. Start by painting the trim and completing the edgework. Cover the trim about 3 to 6 inches away from your baseboards, windowsills, and other components. Once you’ve completed the finer details, it’s easy to cover the rest of your home with the roller.
8) Clean the Walls Before You Paint: Many people make the rookie mistake of forgetting to clean walls before they paint. You might think dirty walls don’t matter because you’re painting over them. But that’s not true. If you paint on an oily or dirty surface, then your paint will chip or peel away. Clean the grimy areas with a mild soap. Or, use a deglosser or heavy-duty cleaner for stuck-on blemishes.
9) Use a Cotton Drop Cloth to Protect your Floor: Some people use plastic drop cloths to protect their floors and furniture. However, cotton drop clothes are better. Spills happen no matter how careful you are. A good drop cloth can save your floor, carpet, or a piece of furniture. A heavy cotton drop cloth sticks in place. You don’t need to tape it, nor do you have to worry about slips. Some drop cloths are specifically marketed as non-slip drop cloths, making them ideal for maintaining traction.
10) Try the Cut-In Technique: Professional interior painters will tell you about the cut-in technique. This is an alternative to covering the edges with painter’s tape. It’s a freehand method that requires a steady hand and a fine brush, but it leads to a smooth band of paint along the edges. Look up tutorials online if you want to master the art of interior painting.
Final Word: Good Interior Painting is a Crucial Skill
Good interior painting skills can save you thousands as a homeowner. It gives you the confidence to try new things and create the room you want in your home.
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