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Painting Prep

The Martha Stewart Show, Episode 5128

Many people rely on professionals to paint the interior of their homes, but if you have the right equipment and are armed with the proper techniques, you can achieve a top-quality look yourself.

Essential Painting Tools
Most painting projects can be easily tackled with these basic tools.

  • Metal tray
  • Plastic tray liner
  • Inexpensive roller
  • 2 roller sleeves
  • 2 nylon paint brushes: 2-inch angle and 3-inch square
  • Paint can key
  • Paint pole
  • Drop cloth
  • Painters tape

Painting Prep
To prepare the room for painting, begin by lining your floors with Masonite and craft or resin paper. Remove switch plates, outlet covers, and any other hardware possible. Use painter's tape to line the trim and ceiling, and start with a primer if your walls are not white.

Get the Complete Guide to Painting Prep

Painting Tips

  • Use an angled brush for cutting in around edges and windows.
  • Work from the tops down so that drips won't damage completed work.
  • Don't dip the brush too deep into the paint, or it will be unwieldy.
  • Only wipe off one side of the brush after dipping in paint.

Clean-Up
Once you're finished painting, wash brush with warm and soapy water. Use a brush comb to remove stubborn brush paint, and dry brush hanging upside-down. If you have leftover paint, store in small plastic containers that are labeled with the room name and date for touch-ups; latex paint can last a decade stored indoors.

Resources
See our painting how-to. Learn more about Martha Stewart Living Paint.