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Never picked up a paintbrush? Don't worry. You can still paint a wall like a pro!
Step 1: Smooth bumps & wipe
If painting a new wall with no previous paint, use sandpaper to smooth any bumps. If there are any holes, spackle and sand them. Then wipe with a damp rag.
Step 2: Cover trim & floor
Cover the trim with blue painter’s tape and cover the floor with a drop cloth.
Step 3: Apply primer
Apply a thick coat of primer with a thickly padded roller. This will hide any surface imperfections and keep the paint from peeling. Allow the primer to fully dry.
Choose paint colors a shade lighter than what you really want—colors often dry darker than you expect—and test them on a small, discreet spot.
Step 4: Paint edges
Tackle the edges first. Using a two- or three-inch brush, apply a band of paint along the edges of the ceiling, windows, doors, baseboards, and cabinets. This is called 'cutting in.'
Small rooms take about one or two gallons for the first coat; the second coat takes about half as much.
Step 5: Use roller to paint
Pour paint into a roller pan and use the roller to paint in an up and down motion. One technique: roll out a W shape in paint and then spread it evenly into a square.
Don’t paint from side to side—it can look streaky.
Step 6: Wait for 1st coat to dry
Wait an hour or so for the first coat to dry.
Want to make it dry faster? Put some fans in the room.
Step 7: Apply 2nd coat
Apply the second coat with a fresh roller pad with a lighter shag. Use less pressure the second time around—just make sure the paint is distributed evenly.
Step 8: Fill in spots
Use a two-inch brush—or even a small painter’s brush from an art store—to fill in or even out any spots you missed or that are too bulky or streaky.
Step 9: Let dry & remove tape
Once the second coat is dry (in about an hour) carefully remove the painter’s tape.
Step 10: Enjoy wall
Enjoy your newly painted wall!
Did You Know?
Fast-food restaurant walls are often painted yellow or orange because studies show those colors make people eat faster.