DIY Painting


Monday, October 3, 2022 8:38 AM

Many homeowners are familiar with basic painting preparation. For example, it’s essential to use drop cloths and painter’s tape and properly mix paint. But did you know that a golf ball can preserve paint quality or that microwaving painter’s tape can make it easier to manage?

A few painting techniques can make DIY projects more manageable. Properly storing paint and using the correct tools will ensure you avoid blemishes, cover surfaces evenly, and keep the area safe.

These tips for DIY painting can help you improve your work and save time on home maintenance or selling your house.


  • If you aren’t sure what color you want, buy one quart first. Then, to see how light affects the color, paint a piece of foam board and move it around in the room.
  • Do take the time necessary to prepare the space. Place artwork and accessories in a single box. Place furniture in the middle of the room (or into another area altogether), then wipe down the walls. Plastic sheets can become slippery and messy if not covered with a drop cloth.
  • Remove any hardware, such as doorknobs or switch plates, and place the parts in a bag.
  • Gather all the tools you need for the project and set up a “paint station” in the room. Include the following items: a paint tray, painter’s tape, brushes, rollers, stir sticks, rags, paint thinner, and tools (e.g., hammer, screwdriver).
  • Purchase a good paint tray. Line it with disposable plastic tray forms. In a pinch, aluminum foil is a good substitute.
  • Calculate the amount of paint you will need. It is always better to mix it all at once.
  • Select the correct rollers and brushes depending on the paint’s viscosity (if the paint rolls on the surface well) and wall texture. For painting around trim, brushes with angled tips work best.
  • Wear appropriate clothing as you will get paint on your clothes at some point, and slip-on shoes to allow easy entry into the room.
  • If you are changing from one extreme to another color, prime the walls. For example, if your walls are currently red and you’re switching to a soft beige, expect to paint at least three coats — one coat of primer and two of the new color.
  • Keep some paint in a small container or glass jar for touch-ups. Label each container with the brand name and color. Also, keep inexpensive foam and artist’s brushes on hand for touch-ups on trim and difficult-to-reach areas.


  • Don’t rush. You’ll achieve the best results by practicing patience. Plan accordingly – painting a room is an all-day affair.
  • Don’t pour paint into the can until you have drilled holes in the can rim. Simply hammer holes in the metal rim using a nail to allow the paint to drip down the can.
  • Don’t paint in random order. Start with the ceiling, move on to the walls and doors, and finally, the floor.
  • Don’t apply latex to an oil finish without first sanding it (be sure to use a mask!) and wiping off any dust with a tack cloth. Then, use a primer with the same composition as the topcoat (oil or latex).
  • Don’t paint directly on wallpaper. Prime and remove all wallpaper with a steamer. If the item is not falling off, you can remove it using a steamer or paper-removing solution. Sand the area with a tack cloth, then prime.
  • Don’t close the door to the room. To allow proper ventilation, keep doors and windows wide open.
  • Don’t underestimate the time it will take to finish the job. Let everything dry for at least 24 hours before returning items to the room. Allow at least two weeks for drying before you wash or wipe.
  • Don’t forget to clean your brushes and rollers if you plan to use them again.
  • Don’t dispose of paint irresponsibly. Look in your local area for hazardous waste recycling facilities.
  • Don’t reattach the lid without first cleaning the can’s rim. To further prevent accidental splatters, place a paper towel or rag on top of your lid. Then, hammer it to secure.


Contact Stanford Painting

Not sure you’re up for a DIY painting project? Contact Stanford Painting for all your interior painting needs! We’d love to help you with your next residential or commercial paint job.

Call us today at 650-321-9302 to request a quote or visit our services page to learn more about how we can help you. You can also visit our gallery page to check out our recent projects.