Painting a Room

21 October 2021

It can seem so easy to repaint the walls of a room. With some guidance and the correct tools, it is.


Think about it before you start going out to spend money. Will you only paint the walls or how will the moldings (floor and ceiling) look next to the new color? Will you need to tackle the ceiling as well?

One of the best investments you can make is to buy sample sizes of the colors you are considering. Place them in good sized swatches on the area(s) and live with them for a minimum of weeks and months are better. That way you can see how the color looks in the daylight, bright sunshine, artificial light, cloudy days, and candlelight. The computer programs can’t give you that amount of variety.


While you are living with those colors, start to accumulate any tools or supplies you might need. That will include ladders tall enough to reach without your stretching (and potentially falling), putty knife and spackle to fix any dings (or even wall board for larger sections), painter’s tape, brushes and rollers, drop cloths, etc.

Before you begin repairs, dust all the walls and inspect everything. If everything is fine, great! If not, plan your attack. After all the repairs are complete, wipe down the walls again to be sure there is no lingering dust.


There are online calculators that will help you with this. Plan on one gallon for every 400 square feet of space you will cover. If you are going light over a current darker hue, plan on a primer. Most of the programs assume two coats. If the walls are textured, you will need to increase the amount of paint. That goes for painting moldings that have grooves or carvings.

Painting and prepping a room


Move everything possible out of the room, especially breakables or valuable pieces of furniture. If you can’t get it through doorways, at least relocate it to the center of the room. Cover all pieces with drop cloths or plastic. Sheets are not sufficient because the paint is liquid enough to soak through and damage whatever you are trying to protect.

It is best to remove all the outlet and switch covers, or at least protect them with painter’s tape. Also tape around the windows, doors, crown molding, baseboards, or other items. Use a putty knife to seal it. Consider taping down the drop cloth to the baseboards to better protect the carpeting or floors.

You have already cleaned all the surfaces. While no one will probably notice that cobweb that got caught in your brush stroke, but your eye will be drawn to it every time you enter the room.

Even though the paint company or department will shake the can when you buy it, stir it occasionally to be sure the dyes stay mixed.

Plan your ventilation.

Clean Up

Be sure the paint is thoroughly dry before you remove the painter’s tape, and then do so carefully. Fold the drop cloths onto themselves in case there are any spots that are still sticky. Clean brushes and rollers based on the type of paint you used and reshape bristles.

No matter how long you think it will take you to complete the project, double the estimation. If it actually takes that long, you won’t be frustrated; if it takes less time, you will be elated.

For more info on painting a room visit a local paint store.

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