How-To: Painting

With the economy still in the tank, it’s time to start thinking about the how-tos in your life. Paying someone to do it for you is a great way to get any home project done, and then take credit for it yourself. But let’s face it, paying a person to start the project, and then mysteriously disappear for two weeks while your home looks like someone threw-up a construction site, isn’t very fun either.

So, without further hesitation, let’s begin with the easiest way to redo your home: painting.

1. By now, those plain white walls are shouting for some life, and that Madonna poster from 1985 just isn’t cutting it anymore. So, add color! You’ll need to think about this one a bit. Bright red may seem like the best color, but chances are, it’s not, which is why those walls have remained white for so long. You probably should ask a friend to help you pick just the right color that complements or contrasts with everything already in your room, depending on what you’re going for.

2. Now that you’ve gone to Home Depot, and realized where all the hot men shop, it’s time to prepare the room for painting. It may require another trip to Home Depot (for supplies, not eye-candy). You’ll need to make sure you cover all the floors, any furniture you couldn’t get out of the room, and any hardware like light covers, etc. If you don’t paint for a living, you’re bound to make a mess.

3. Here’s the hard part: Unless your walls are already smooth, or you just don’t care, and would rather head back to Home Depot for some “shopping,” you’ll need to fill in the gaps and holes, perhaps even sand the surface to make it smooth. Once that is done, the real painting can begin.

4. Using a brush or one of those handy edging tools, paint around all the corners and near the windows, ceiling and floor. Fun, right? Unless you plan to wing it, doing so will give you a little space with the painting roller, so you don’t start painting your ceiling and floor at the same time. But, hey, who am I to say that walking into a room painted bright red from floor to ceiling wouldn’t be the best party room ever?

5. Here’s the fun part—and by “fun,” I mean the really big and not-so-fun part. Now that you’ve covered everything, and painted all the edges, you get to take the roller, and paint the walls. Make sure you dampen the roller a bit to help the paint stick to the walls. If you hear that “peeling sound,” it means you don’t have enough paint on the roller. (See, an actual useful tip!) Once you cover the walls with paint, you most likely will need to wait for it to dry, then repeat Steps 4 and 5. You can wait at Home Depot, and “ask” for help from all those manly men and butch women.

6. With your painting done, and the walls dry, it’s time to work on the trim around the room. Here, you can pick a color that pops, or something that just will look pleasant to the eye. It’s best if you remove the trim from the walls if possible, so any mistakes you make won’t be obvious to your guests, who are sure to point them out every time they stop over.

7. Now that the work is done, it’s time to sit back, and enjoy a job well done with your new “friend” you met at Home Depot. If you did make any mistakes, just tell your friends that the guy you hired to paint the room screwed up, and you didn’t pay him a dime because of it!

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