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Interior Painting Best Practices: Paint Like a Pro, Part One—Initial Prep & Purchase

Over the past 25 years, we have completed thousands of interior painting jobs in Redding, Ridgefield, Darien, Wilton, Westport and more. While we will be delighted to provide a quote for any interior painting projects, we also know that there are just some rooms you want to paint on your own. So, we thought we would share some of our knowhow to ensure your interior painting project runs as smoothly as ours do.

Determine Paint Quantity

Measure your wall lengths and ceiling heights to determine the square footage of the room. If you like, you can click through to this nifty Benjamin Moore Paint Calculator. FYI, calculator assumes you will be applying two coats of paint and it even accounts for door and window space! As a rule of thumb, a gallon of paint covers about 450 square feet.

Purchase Materials

We have lots of great local paint stores in our area. My personal favorite is Rings End in Bethel. If you find yourself shopping there, ask for Louis, Rich or Bob—they will answer all your questions and treat you very well!

Interior Painting RidgefieldHere is your shopping list*

  • Benjamin Moore Brand Paint
  • A Fast-Dry Compound or Durabond (Comes in powder form and you just add water. It is very forgiving and can be purchased in 5, 20, 45 and 90-minute dry times.)
  • 3M Painters Tape
  • 2 mil Plastic Sheeting
  • Roll Paper

*Also, here are a few other items you will need, but you may already have on-hand: paint roller, roller covers, roller tray, paint stirrer, fine sandpaper, and a brush for cutting in.


Move Furniture and Belongings

  • Remove anything hanging on the walls and take down curtains and blinds.
  • Move light furniture out of the room—such as chairs, lamps, and side tables.
  • Remove contents from dressers, desks and bureaus to lighten the load. Then move large pieces of furniture toward the center of the room—at least three feet from the wall.
  • Use the 2 mil plastic to cover the furniture leaving three feet on each side so that it can be taped to the floor.

Protect Your Floors

Interior painting reddingYou can use a variety of materials to protect your floors when interior painting. If you have canvas tarps, drop cloths or old sheets, you can first cover the floor with the 2-mil plastic and tape around the edges as in the picture labeled A. Then you can layer your tarps or drop cloth on top. Alternatively you can put the first layer of plastic and then put the roll paper on top and tape down the paper edges in the picture labeled B.

Assess and Patch the Walls

Are the walls and ceilings sheetrock or plaster? Most homes built after 1950 will have sheetrock. Either way, you can use drywall compound to repair holes and cracks that are now exposed.

Press the compound into the damaged area over and over until the crack or hole is completely filled. Take the putty knife and scrape it flush. A larger void may need a second coat. Once the compound has fully dried, you can sand the patched areas to a smooth finish.

Stay tuned for our next post, the final steps of prep and paint application!