Are you a beginner to decorating? Make light work of all your decorating with these great ways to save time and money, and cut down on mess. By Sarah Warwick
1 Buy The Right Amount Of Paint
Find out how much paint you’ll need the easy way. B&Q has a useful calculator. Input your room’s dimensions, the number of doors and windows and how many coats of paint you want, and it will tell you how many litres of paint you need to buy. Dulux has a calculator for walls, or skirting, doors and window frames, as well as exterior areas. Bear in mind, the cheaper the paint, the more coats you’ll need to get good coverage. Also, remember that it’s always good to have a little of the colour you’ve chosen left over – that way, you can touch up knocks and scratches over time.
2 Work Cannily
Paint windows first thing so they’ll be dry by the end of the day when you need to close them. For more painting tips, check out our guide to painting your home.
3 Get The Right Kit
It’s worth investing in the right tools before you tackle any job – it will help make the job easier, neater and quicker. For example, instead of taking radiators off the wall, save time and hassle by using a radiator roller to paint behind them.
4 Avoid Cleaning
To save yourself a cleaning job, line a roller tray with foil before you pour the paint in. When you’ve finished, you can put unused paint back in the tin. Make sure you dispose of the foil properly.
5 Make Life Easier
Decant paint into a paint kettle when you’re decorating with a paintbrush. That way, you can keep the lid on your large tin of paint and prevent dust getting into it – plus you won’t need to lug a heavy tin around the room. Line the paint kettle with foil to make cleaning up easy
6 Lengthen Your Paintbrush’s Life
When you’re using a paintbrush, dip the bristles into the paint in the paint kettle to one-third their depth, then press against the inside to remove excess before applying. Find out here how to clean your paintbrush properly.
7 Start In The Right Place
Start at the top of the room and work down when you’re painting so that any splashes will be painted over later.
8 Be Safe
Turn off the electricity when you are painting around switches and sockets, then unscrew them slightly to get a neat paint job.
9 Store & Dispose Of Paint Properly
Don’t pour paint down the drain. Leftover paint can be sealed tightly and stored with the tin upside-down in a frost-free place. If you have too much to ever need it again, try local community groups or www.communityrepaint.org.uk. For disposal, call your local authority to find out what to do in your area.
10 Buy From The Same Batch
When you buy wallpaper, buy from the same batch – there’s a batch number on the label. Buying from different batches could mean tiny differences in colour – you’ll hardly notice it when it’s going up, but you might once the room is finished.
For more decorating advice and how to guides, go to Channel 4 / 4Homes
Read more posts by mydeco.