Fresh Paint – Keep it Looking New

Fresh Paint – Keep it Looking New

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There’s nothing like a fresh coat of paint to brighten your space and lighten your spirits. But once tarps come down and the painters are gone, what do you do to keep your new paint job looking bright and “like new?”

Handle with care

Fresh paint will feel dry to the touch, but it actually takes several weeks for the paint to fully cure. Latex or waterborne paint cures in approximately 30 days; whereas, oil based paints can take around 60 days.

Protect your investment interiors

Curing

During the time when interior paint is curing, it is important not to clean or otherwise disturb the surface. Allowing the paint time to cure will significantly increase the longevity of your new paint job.

New paint – proper care and cleaning

  • Flat paint, which is the sheen I almost always recommend for walls, requires special care. Use a damp cloth to wipe away any smudges or dirt. Avoid rewetting the surface if at all possible. In cases of difficult marks or stains, it may be best to touch up the area with the original paint.
  • Trim work is generally painted with sheen, usually satin or semi-gloss, which is easier to clean. Trim paint can rewet with excessive scrubbing, however, and you should never use an acidic cleaner on any paint surface as it can actually strip the paint away. A simple solution of Dawn dish soap and water is recommended for cleaning trim work. This also works great for stubborn stains on walls.

Touch up instead

Sometimes, a painted surface cannot be cleaned without damaging the paint. In this case, I recommend touching up the paint with the original paint (leftover from the paint job). After a certain period of time, which varies depending on environment and lifestyle, regular wear and tear from daily living will necessitate a fresh paint job rather than a touch up.

Protect your investment exteriors

Freshly painted house exterior

Exterior paint surfaces require extra care due to environmental exposure of weather and outdoor elements. If exteriors are not maintained, mold and mildew can develop – a condition which will eventually ruin the paint job. To avoid this, take the following precautions:

Inspect

A visual inspection of the house will reveal signs of mold/mildew or excess dirt from rain or weather conditions.

Clean

I recommend pressure washing the exterior surfaces as needed. Treat any mold or mildew buildup with a dilute household  bleach solution or a mildewcide.

  • Loose paint may come off during the washing. If this occurs, it is an indication of a paint failure situation that must be dealt with. It is recommended that you use a professional painting company for any paint failure issue.
  • Avoid the use of TSP (tri-sodium phosphate) for maintenance cleaning. This chemical can de-gloss the paint.

 

Until next time – keep smiling!

~Nancy

Two Coats are Better than One – Here’s Why

Two Coats are Better than One – Here’s Why

Home Painting Interior Painting Paint color

It’s a gloomy Portland day. You’re stuck inside looking at your walls, which have been the same color for years. You think – I could paint over that. I could have a fresh start; I could transform my whole world with just one coat of paint! You daydream, plan, plot. Your interior paint job will be the envy of the neighborhood. But then the anxiety sets in, and you read the label on the paint can: two coats?!?! And your world comes crashing down around you.

While this may be overly dramatic, when it comes to tackling a wall or trim painting job on your own, switching from a one coat plan to a two coat plan has some serious consequences (and some serious consequences if you don’t!). Not only does the extra coat add extra materials, it adds extra drying time. Let’s be honest, it’s easier to only do one coat.

Easier is not always better—often it’s worse. As professionals, we get to do all the worrying for you. We worry about the perfect coverage and finish, we worry about making sure that your paint is covered under the manufacturer’s warranty, and we worry about getting the most bang for your buck. If you haven’t hired us to worry for you, you should be thinking about these things too.

Our rule of thumb: if the can says use two, we do

“But Nancy,” I can hear you protest. “The shampoo bottle says wash, rinse and repeat and I never do that. Surely this manufacturer warning is just shampoo paranoia.” Let me explain why it isn’t.

Two coats assure better coverage

Unless you are painting with the same color as was already on your walls, you’ll need two to make sure that no nasty undertones pop through your new color.

The manufacturer’s warranty won’t cover your paint

unless you follow the specifications as listed on the can. For most paint, this means using two coats. The warranty makes sure you’re covered in case of a bad batch of paint or some sort of failure down the road. Having the warranty makes sure your job doesn’t get unexpectedly more expensive because of issues with your paint. There are some exceptions to the two “coats = manufacturer’s” warranty rule. For example, Benjamin Moore’s Aura honors their warranty with only one coat as far as product failure goes. They don’t, however, guarantee coverage with only one coat.

Two coats are always more durable than one

Paint durability is dependent on the thickness with which it is applied (or its level of film). But there’s a catch 22, in order for paint to spread evenly, it requires thin coats. If you try to get a thick coat in one go at it your paint might end up looking like a hot mess; dripping, running and sagging all over the place. The best way to get an even, thick coverage is to do two thin layers. It’ll be worth your time!

Two coats touch up better than one

Because of the coverage issues we’ve already talked about, touching up one coat can be dangerous. If your first coat did not achieve full coverage, a touch up will stand out loud and proud with full, mismatching coverage as compared to the rest of the wall.

So, whether you’re giving your walls a face lift or painstakingly painting your trim, two coats is generally the way to go. You’ll have a beautiful, lasting finish that will make you sigh with joy not pull your hair in frustration—at least until the next time you decide to change it up.

Analogous Color Schemes – Decorate in Perfect Harmony

Analogous Color Schemes – Decorate in Perfect Harmony

Home Painting Interior Painting Paint color

Make the right choice

Choosing the perfect color scheme can feel overwhelming. What if, once it’s on the wall, you don’t like it? What if, after a year, you’re tired of looking it?

Reflect your personality

If you’re like me, it’s important that your style of décor and color schemes reflect your personality – although, in my case, I really don’t want the scatterbrained, distracted and flighty part of my personality to come through! I look for the sophisticated and subtle parts of me hidden deep down inside. What better way to draw them out than with the colors and décor I choose for my home? When choosing colors for a client, I rely heavily on intuition and experience. When it comes right down to it, some colors just pop and feel “right” in a given space. And, I also consider how it all comes together, which is my way of saying it’s important to select colors that are analogous.

What is analogous?

Choosing analogous colors from paint paletteAnalogous is just another way to say similar or comparable. Analogous colors are the colors that correspond to each other on the color wheel. When you look at the colors splayed out on the wheel, the color on either side of your dominant color is analogous. The best part about analogous color schemes is that they flow nicely. Unless you are specifically trained or gifted with color, picking colors around the wheel can end up looking like a mess. If you pick colors next to each other, you have a much better chance of getting it right.

Create an impact with comparable colors

The wonderful thing about color is that a little change can make a big impact. You don’t need to pick green in one room and red in another to give your house interest. Picking green in one room and blue-green in the next can be just as striking with a much better flow. The rooms will feel like they are related to each other, in a sense connected, and the style theme will carry from one room to the next.

When selecting colors, it should be a goal that your space appears as though it was completely decorated all at the same time and in the same style. That doesn’t mean you can’t mix up styles; however, if you do, try to carry that theme from room to room. In this way you avoid the perception that every room represents a different stage of your life.

Need a little inspiration? Invite me over and I’ll bring my color wheel. Choosing the theme for your home can be both fun and inspiring.

Until next time,

Nancy

Ceilings – Sisu’s Six Essential Painting Tips

Ceilings – Sisu’s Six Essential Painting Tips

Home Painting Interior Painting

De-stress the idea

Make sure that the ceiling needs to be painted in the first place.

Are you painting your walls?

If so, I definitely recommend painting your ceiling. Think of your ceiling as another wall in the room. Would you skip painting any other walls? Of course not. And, once you get that fresh coat of paint on your walls, I guarantee you will not want to revisit the project by attempting to paint the ceilings later on down the road. Taping off walls and protecting them from splatter is a chore in and of itself.

Should you skip painting it?

The only time I recommend skipping the ceilings is if they have been recently painted AND the wall color will flow with the existing ceiling color. If the ceiling color does not match the new wall colors, I recommend painting the ceiling.

If you have a water leak or other damage you need to paint over, you may not need to paint the walls. In this case, you will have to cover all your walls with plastic to protect from splatter.

Get awesome results

Use the right equipment:

I can’t stress this enough. You need the correct size extension pole to attach to your roller handle. This will make life so much easier. This will also keep you off the ladder because you can paint the ceiling from the floor (unless you have really tall ceilings). You also need the proper ladder.Choose the right ladder with help from Sherwin WilliamsMake sure it’s the correct height for the job and that it’s sturdy and set up properly. I recommend a good quality brush and rollers as well.

 

 

Completely cover the floor (and all belongings) with drop cloths, paper or plastic:

Save yourself the hassle from having to move around drop cloths by covering the entire floor and furniture before you open the can of paint. The centrifugal force of the roller will throw tiny droplets of paint that will splatter everywhere. Think ahead and cover all exposed surfaces. 

Use a high-quality ceiling paint:

You don’t need the most expensive paint, but if you go too cheap, you might not get the coverage you need. I recommend Benjamin Moore’s Ceiling Paint.

Cut in first:

Sisu painter cutting inUse a brush to cut in the edges, the corners and around light fixtures or other hardware. Choose a container that will fit comfortably in your hand. Pour paint off from your gallon into your container but only fill about 1/3 full. Dip your brush into the container, covering just the ends of the brush – only dip in about ½ inch or so. Don’t overload your brush. Apply the paint around the perimeter of the room with your brush and around any fixtures.

Roll out an even coat:

The best way to get an even coat is to evenly coat your roller when you are loading it up. Applying loaded-up roller in a W pattern on ceilingApply the loaded-up roller in an N or W pattern, then go back and roll over it to spread it out. Work your way from one side of the room to the other until your entire ceiling is covered. Do not worry if it looks uneven while it’s drying.  Once it’s dry, it’ll look much better.

 

Paint two coats:

After you’ve done all the work to get the first coat on, it might be tempting to say “done is better than perfect” but in this case, let’s just do it right. The second coat is half the work of the first coat and it’s the step that’s going to take your hard work to next level. I almost always recommend two coats. If you want a professional looking job, paint the second coat.

I hope these tips help you achieve the results you are looking for. And remember, we are always more than happy to bid the job for you!

Until next time,

Nancy

Trim – Sisu’s Six Essential Painting Tips

Trim – Sisu’s Six Essential Painting Tips

Home Painting Interior Painting

Photo by RhondaK Native Florida Folk Artist on Unsplash

To get the best results

Whether you have recently installed new trim, or you are attempting to update your old wood work, these tips should help you achieve the results you are hoping for.

1. Choose the correct primer:

If you are painting trim that is bare wood or has been stained and clear coated, you will want an oil-based primer.  Check with your local paint store for the best recommendation.

2. Choose the correct trim paint:

For trim paint, you want a high-quality enamel.  I recommend Benjamin Moore’s Advance; a low VOC modified alkyd.  This is a waterborne paint with alkyd resins that slows down the drying process, so you get a better “float”.  This simply means the paint levels better than traditional water-based paints (think less brush strokes or stipple).

3. Prep, prep and more prep:

Prep for Painting TrimYour paint job will only look as good as your prep.  You will need to fill holes and caulk in your wood work.  You also need to de-gloss the wood work, if it has been previously painted or clear coated.  I recommend sanding the trim or wiping down with a chemical de-glosser.  On especially glossy substrates, I recommend both.

 

 

4. Take your time:

Painting is not a job you want to rush. If you try to hurry your job along, you will get sloppy results. As a novice, it might be better to take on small chunks of the project rather than the whole house.  Think about just painting trim in one room at a time.  This will make the project more manageable and you won’t feel so much pressure to hurry.

5. Use a good brush:

Purdy Brush Wood WorkUnless you are very experienced with an airless or HVLP sprayer, I recommend you brush your trim work.  This takes a little finesse, but with a little practice you can achieve great results. Buy your paint brush from a paint store.  A 2 or 2 ½ inch brush will probably be the easiest to handle. Go for the name brands, and do not pinch pennies when it comes to your purchase.  Remember to take good care of your brush by washing it after each use.  Keep the jacket the brush came in for storage. There is nothing more frustrating than painting with a brush that has bent bristles.

6. Thin your paint:

You can use a paint extender, such as Flotrol to extend the paint.  This extends the drying time and gives you a little extra time to work with the paint before it starts to skim over (the top surface dries quickly).  Quick drying paint can turn gummy on you, leaving behind unsightly brush strokes on your trim.

I hope these tips lead you to a successful trim painting project.  And, remember – we are only a phone call away.

Happy Painting!

Nancy