As the sun comes out and the days get warmer, now could be the perfect time for a bit of DIY. Of course you might already have been busy repairing blocked drains, sprucing up outside furniture or having a spring clear out, but what about trying a bit of painting and decorating? Revamping your house in time for summer is easier than you think, so here are several l tips to get you started.
Prepare the walls before painting
If you have little time to spare, it can be tempting to slap on a new coat of paint and be done with it, but it’s worth preparing your walls for the best results. To do this, remove all furniture from the room before taking off electric switch plates, light fixtures, door handles and anything else you don’t want to damage. Next, protect your carpets and get rid of any chipped or peeling paint with a metal wall scraper. If you need to remove wallpaper, wet it first with hot water to make the job easier or invest in a professional wall stripper. When this is done, use sandpaper to smooth the surface and fill any holes or cracks with a latex caulk, plaster or suitable putty – this can be bought from DIY stores.
Choose the right paint for your home
On the whole, painting is quicker and easier than wallpapering and provides a great base for stencils and wall transfers. The problem is, there are so many types of paint out there it can be hard to know where to start – so here’s some handy advice. If you need something that is quick to dry and won’t fill your house with a strong odour, water-based products are ideal. They’re easy to use and allow for several coats to be applied on the same day, although you might find brush strokes harder to eliminate. If you’re looking for a smooth coating and don’t mind how long it takes, oil-based products could be better for you although they do give off a rather strong chemically smell, take longer to dry and brushes need to be cleaned with white spirit.
Mix your colours carefully
Despite the extensive array of paint colours available these days, there might come a time when you want to make your own. This is fine, but always experiment with small amount of product first to eliminate wastage. It may sound simple, but bear in mind that the primary colours of this world – red, yellow and blue – can be mixed together to create a wide range of secondary colours including green, brown or purple. You can also mix primary shades like yellow with a secondary shade that contains the primary, so check out this essential guide. White will lighten the colour and black will darken it, but always test your final product on paper first as it might dry a little differently to what you expect.
Select the right brush for painting
One of the most important parts of painting is choosing the right brush. A roller might seem like a great way to cover your walls quickly, but you’re sure to need a range of other tools too. A 4.6 inch wall brush is great for painting large surfaces as it will help you get an even coating without taking up too much of your time. If you need something smaller, a two inch brush is ideal for painting small sections of wall, as well as woodwork and skirting boards, whereas a one inch or half inch brush can help you reach small spaces – and makes it easier to get near to door and window frames. Finally, a cutting in brush with angled bristled will help give a neat edging to all paintwork and is superb for tackling window frames.
Decorating should be fun, so follow the simple tips and unleash your creative side!