After sharing my paint secrets last month, I was so excited to find out how much ya'll loved them! Your enthusiasm reminded me that many of you are still learning just like I am....and I love that. I thought I would share a few more tips today, and hopefully answer a few questions that I frequently receive from readers. Some of these you might know, some you might not. Maybe you'll even have a few lightbulb moments like I did when I figured this stuff out. So, here are my 10 paint secrets...round two!
#1: Make a paint chip key ring
I recently made my own paint chip key ring, and it's so useful! I wish I would have done this long ago! It's just a simple key ring with all of my paint colors and paint names attached. It really comes in handy when I'm out shopping for fabric, furniture, or decorative accents like pillows, etc.
To make this, I used the paint chips from all my wall colors, a key ring, and some key tags. You can find the key tags in the key department of most home improvement stores or here (Amazon affiliate link).
I cut out a small square off the paint chip, glued it to one side of the tag, and wrote the name of the paint color and room it goes in on the back of the tag.
I have it in my purse and take it with me whenever I go out. You could also do this with popsicle sticks, or even just laminate little pieces of the paint chips and hole punch them.
*To see the paint colors we used in our house, go here.
#2. How to choose a paint finish
When you've never painted anything before, that first time to the hardware store is a doozy. Paint comes in a bunch of finishes and it can be really confusing when it comes to which one you're supposed to get for which project. So, after years of using different paint all over my house and my furniture, here's what type of paint I usually get for different projects:
Flat paint: use for walls in living rooms, bedrooms, ceilings, or furniture
Eggshell: use for walls in hallways, dining rooms, kitchens
Satin: use for walls in bathrooms, or furniture
Semi-gloss: use for windows, trim, doors, and cabinetry
#3. Use Tack Cloth
I love tack cloth. A lot.
Have you ever sanded down your furniture or wooden trim before painting it and then ended up with a million bits of fuzz and dust in your paint job? It can be so frustrating to paint a piece so perfectly and find out after it's dried that there is a giant tumbleweed stuck right on top. Tack cloth is the solution for that. It's basically like a kinda sticky rag that doesn't get it's stickiness anywhere. You just wipe down the surface of whatever you're painting and it picks up everything. I use it on every single piece of furniture that I paint.
#4. Furniture touch up pens
These things are definitely on my list of awesome inventions. I am well known around these parts for being heavy handed with a vacuum cleaner and scratching up the legs of all our furniture. Plus, Tootie and Cheese take care of the rest of the furniture with their claws. Once a month or so, I go around the house with one of these Minwax pens and color in the scratches. I have an espresso one for our couch legs, and a black one for our desk and table. You can find these here (Amazon affiliate link).
#5. Save time with artist brushes
While I usually take the time to remove outlet covers, etc., sometimes (if you're like me), you've painted for endless months by yourself and you just run out of steam. This can save you some time, and the brushes are so small that you can really paint a small very precise area. I've done it in a couple rooms, and it truly looks like I took the outlet cover off.
Not only does this tip work for outlets, but it works for doorknobs and hinges, and for touching up small knicks and marks on your walls, too.
#6. Prime before painting wood
I painted a lot of furniture before I learned about primer. It was the MOST annoying learning lesson I've endured yet, as most of those pieces ended up having to be redone. I'm sure it's common knowledge to any of you seasoned furniture painters, but for those of you just starting out (like I was a few years ago!), hopefully this tip will save you from the trauma of peeling furniture.
Hopefully by now, we all know that you're supposed to sand furniture before painting it. However, unless you sand it down like you have the arms of a powerlifter, your paint won't last forever. This is where primer comes in. If you prime wood before painting, it makes your paint adhere like crazy. Even if you don't sand, primer will still make your paint stick. Ideally, when painting furniture, you would sand and prime. However, if you're short on time, if your piece is already painted, or if it's laminate, you can skip the sanding and just prime, and your paint job will look great and last for a long time. So, the moral of this story is PRIME IT.
See how I paint furniture from start to finish here.
#7. Wax it.
When it comes to finishing furniture, wax is my favorite method.
After painting tons of pieces, I've discovered that my favorite method is to sand, prime, use flat paint, and finish with wax.
If the piece needs to be really durable (like a table or desk), I'll use polycrylic, but if it's just a normal piece that won't be put through a lot, I love the way a flat paint with wax finish looks. Wax isn't as durable, but it looks amazing. All you do is apply it with a rag, rub it on over the paint, let it dry and then buff it with the same rag. I used wax here, and it looks fantastic. My favorite finishing wax is the Minwax paste finishing wax in clear. It can be found here (Amazon affiliate link).
#8. Cheap Sources for Paint Cans
Did you know you can get empty paint cans of all different sizes at Home Depot for just a few bucks?
The gallon cans are about $4 and the quart cans are about $2. This may be common knowledge, but I for one was super excited to discover a bunch of empty paint cans for that cheap. I mix and blend a lot of my own paint colors, as well as make my own chalk paint, so this comes in handy often.
And there's all sorts of other things you could use them for, too! Just think of all the crafts and organizing ideas you could come up with using these.
#9. Gloss spray paint
I'm obviously a huge fan of all types of spray paint. However, my personal fave is high gloss spray paint when it comes to coating small accessories or ceramics. The only problem is that not every spray paint color is sold in a high gloss finish. But did you know that you can buy whatever color spray paint you want in a flat finish and then get a can of clear gloss? It instantly gives anything a glossy, factory-like finish. It's amazing.
#10. My favorite gold spray paint
There are a million gold spray paints out there, but they are not made equal. Don't get me wrong, they all work just fine. However, if you're looking for that certain gold color that is super trendy right now, yet always classic, my go-to gold spray paint is Rustoleum Metallic Gold. I'm using it on several projects as we speak. You can find this spray paint here (Amazon affiliate link).
And that's all ya'll!
Thank you so much for stopping by today!
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