Wednesday, August 27, 2014

DIY: Getting A Clean Paint Line

After moving into the house a few weeks ago (okay almost two months ago!) I am finally getting around to doing some of the painting and decorating for a few of the rooms. Rubes' birthday is in two weeks, and we have a bunch of people coming over to our house for her party, so I've got a deadline to get my house looking at least half-way put together.

For the past few days, I have been tackling Rubes' room: prepping for paint, taping, painting, touching up, etc. I should have taken "before" pics, but when we moved in her room was a tan color, which I didn't mind, but it had a beat up chair rail that went around it that was dark brown, scratched and you could tell it had been there a while. It wasn't worth repainting and salvaging it, so I pulled it off. What I found underneath was red and dark brown paints. That rail had not been moved for the last three paint jobs. We had to sand off mounds of old paint, and patch all of the holes that were left from the nails holding it onto the wall. I do like the idea of a chair rail, I like how it divides the wall and allows you to do different colors without it feeling too overwhelming. But rather than put up a new chair rail, I decided to put a white stripe around the middle of the room. This would break up the walls, while also giving me a place to put these super cute elephant decals that match Rubes' bedding.

But that's when I ran into my biggest concern with starting this paint job, do I really want to paint a stripe on my textured walls?!?! The last two times I have done this in other homes/apartments, I always get a fuzzy line because of the texture, and have to spend hours with a  super tiny art brush, touching up all of the paint that had bled through under the tape. But, I forged on, and decided to do it, but to find a better way to make a straight paint line on texture walls! And I totally did it! Here's the explanation of how I got a PERFECT (no joke, it was seriously perfect) paint line:

Step 1: I got some blue painters tape (I used the Scotch brand), and a long level, and then placed the tape where I wanted the top of my stripe to be (I repeated all of these steps later, when I did the bottom). To be fair, Ace helped me with this part, because it is so difficult to hold a level, level, and put the tape on the wall at the same time.

Step 2: Here's where it gets a little weird, but trust me on this one. I painted the edge of the tape, with THE COLOR THE WALL ALREADY WAS. Since I had just painted that wall a day earlier, I had extra of the paint. So I took a brush and globbed it on the edge of the tape, using upward and downward strokes. I was honestly trying to jam as much paint under the tape as I could. What this does, is fills in all of the holes and gaps where the paint would have normally bled through. But because I'm using the color the walls are already, when it bleeds through, it just matches the existing wall color. Genius!
Graphic showing each of the steps, as explained

Step 3: After painting the existing wall color over the tape, I hung out for a day and let the paint really thoroughly dry. (I didn't say that this was a super quick process!). You could probably move to the next step after a few hours, honestly, but I got busy with other things and didn't have time to come back to it later that day.

Step 4: I then came back and painted over the same edge of the tape, that I had just painted with the existing wall color, with the new color for the stripe. Since I had already gone over it with the existing paint color, there were no more gaps or divots for the new paint color to bleed into. After the new color dried, I removed the tape, and voila... a perfectly straight paint line, with no bleeding, on a textured wall.

Here are some pics of Rube's almost entirely finished up. I have a few pictures to hang on the walls, but it's like 98% done at this point. I'm proud of how it came out!

This wall clearly needs a picture, which is going up tonight! 

Rubes MUST have a fan on, or she can't sleep. Not the cutest decor, but sleep is sleep. 

I added picture frame shelves from IKEA to make the book shelves, so that Rubes can access her board books

Look at that paint line. You know it's good. 

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