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  • Writer's pictureAshley Woodcock

Fail to Prepare, Prepare to Fail!

The difference between a good paint job and a great paint job is preparation. It is often overlooked and sometimes the results can be disastrous. When you finally decide to take the plunge and decorate follow these simple steps to get the professional results.


Preparation Checklist

  1. Drop cloths / plastic sheeting

  2. Masking tape

  3. Sandpaper - 80,120 & 240 grit

  4. Fillers - wood filler, multi purpose filler & caulk

  5. Bucket and sponge

  6. Vacuum cleaner

  7. Stain block

  8. Primer

Protect you Area


Before you start anything you should clear the room as best as you can, there is nothing worse than working in a cramped space. A clear room allows all area's to be accessible which helps create a system. Vacuum the room and wipe down with a damp sponge all surfaces. Mask up the flooring to the baseboards, switch of lights and sockets, loosen and mask. Then sheet up the room.


Inspect the Room


Using the multi surface filler to fill the ceiling and walls. When you see any hair line cracks, scrape out with the edge of you scraper to create a larger crack, dust out and fill. Caulk all the woodwork and angles (smooth all caulk using water and not licking your finger)! Check woodwork and using the wood filler to fill larger holes such as screw holes (wood filler is a lot better in woodwork than multi surface filler as it dries much harder).


Sanding Down


Sanding all surfaces is very important not just for smooth surface but adhesion reasons too, for example is you do not rub woodwork down and paint this can result in peeling! For woodwork start with 80 grit working towards 240. Sanding between coats is very import too (that is why we have invested heavily in the dustless sanding equipment). Remember if you are not using dustless equipment a dust mask must be worn and the room will require re hoovering before painting!


Prime time


Priming is much needed over all filler, failing to do so will result in flashing through the paint. If you have stained woodwork which you would like going into white a Shalac primer is best (Zinsser bin is my go too). This stops a reaction called tanning taking place, where the stain bleeds through the white finish. Paint will also chip away failing to prime. Touch up any water stains with stain block too.


Paint Time


Now we are ready to paint! Set out a system, starting on the ceilings and working down. Remember allow time to dry before re-coating and cuttings in. As a Professional Decorator following the correct procedures, an average size room should take between 2 and 2.5 days so don't worry if you are a d.i.yer and it takes you 2 full weekend or even more!



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