If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve probably already gathered that I painted my living room! I’m bad at keeping secrets when provided with so many social networking outlets. Oopsie!
I like it! I don’t LOVE it, to be honest—the color’s a little bluer than I was expecting—but I do like it a lot. WAY better than the red, even if I end up repainting it eventually.
I know there were some fans out there of the red, but I hated it. Hated it. Even if I had wanted to keep it, the walls were in R-O-U-G-H shape and it would have needed to be redone. Not that it matters, it made my head hurt and my eyes bleed. At no point ever in the entire time I’ve lived here did I think to myself, “Hey! Maybe I should keep this red. It’s so funky!” That, by the way, is a good example of something I would never say aloud, in case you were struggling to think of anything.
Something I would say? “I’m painting our living room Paper White by Benjamin Moore in matte. The ceiling will be White in eggshell, the moldings will be Super White in semi-gloss. The doors and fireplace mantle will be Onyx in Pearl.”
Something Max would say? “Do whatever you want, but please stop talking about it. What’s for dinner?” OMGYOUGUYZDREAMY.
Because I get questions in the comments and the occasional email regarding this very important and surprisingly mysterious concept, I’m going to tell you how to paint a room. Well, how I paint a room. You can do it however you want but my way will always be the right way.
1. Locate, patch, and sand holes with spackle. Really sand, now. Don’t be a punk.
2. Move all your furniture and crap into the middle of the room, cover with a giant $2 plastic tarp.
3. Try to go inside your furniture fort, look around, pretend you’re in a quarantine chamber in a space ship.
4. Put drop cloths on floor around perimeter of room.
PAINT THAT SHIT:
1. STAY HYDRATED. Painting is hard work, don’t kid yourself. It will take you many hours, most of them standing, which is more physical activity than you’re generally comfortable with. That’s why I recommend you stay hydrated. I like to stay hydrated with a couple beers or glasses of wine because, let’s face it, painting’s the fucking worst. Worse than famine. Worse than natural disasters. Worse than Rick Perry. (Maybe not worse than Rick Perry.) The point is: loosen up, settle in for the long haul. So drink some booze, smoke some weed, whatever works for you.
2. Gather up your supplies. You will need: paint, a paint brush (or several), a paint tray, a roller (and pad, I always use “semi-smooth” for walls), and a ladder unless you’re a giant.
I like to use a 2″ angle brush, and because I was feeling a little crazy that day, I bought a stubby one without a handle. What am I, a leprechaun? I don’t know what came over me.
3. Start by cutting in the perimeter of the ceiling with your brush, since the roller can’t paint corners. ”Cutting in” is a fancy painterly term, and when you say it, you’ll sound like you know shit.
4. Paint the ceiling with a roller. Now, you might think you can skip painting the ceiling. “But it looks white,” your lazy ass says. YOU ARE WRONG. It is not white. When confronted with real white, it looks poopy and horrible. Like so:
PAINT YOUR CEILING. You won’t regret it.
5. Start by cutting in with your brush around moldings and up the corners of the room. This was a special pain in the ass because I also had to do it around all those fancy wall-moldings, too.
6. Prime, if you have to. You should really prime if you’re painting a light color over a dark color, or the other way around. For dark over light, ask your paint store if you should use a tinted primer. At this point, things will look terrible.
7. Cut in around the moldings and corners again, and paint another coat with your roller. Then do that again. You probably want two coats, maybe three depending on what paint you use. I used Benjamin Moore’s Regal Select, which is really nice stuff. I usually go with just the plain Regal (it’s a little cheaper and still very nice paint), but I really didn’t want to do three coats.
8. After you’re done with the walls, paint the moldings! Now, you might think you don’t need to paint your moldings. “They look white,” you say.
WRONG AGAIN, STUPID. You need to paint your trim. Just do it, you’ll feel better.
Now, this might shock you. DO NOT USE PAINTER’S TAPE. There is a time and a place for it, but it’s really not necessary in most cases, certainly not for painting most moldings and stuff. Normally, it just messes you up, since paint gets all up under the tape and ruins your clean lines. It also takes forever to apply, and really isn’t as fun as you think it is to rip off. You really just need your angle brush, a steady-ish hand, and about three minutes of practice to really get the hang of things. If you are going to use painter’s tape, please for the love of god use it right.
The last people who painted my apartment apparently did not read the tape instruction manual and thought it would be easier to cut their tape off the wall with an x-acto knife. This is not only wrong, but evil, because it leaves TEENY TINY slivers of painting tape that will slowly separate from the walls over time and drive the next painter totally fucking insane trying to peel off. It’s not right, it’s not fair, never do this ever or your karma will be in the shitter. And that’s a promise.
9. Clean up, put your furniture back, and you’re done!
Max bought that painting a couple weeks ago from his friend Matt Uebbing. We’re still deciding on art placement, so it’s not hung yet, but we’ll get to that.
I decided to paint the wall moldings with the ceiling paint, which is just off-the-shelf BM “White” in eggshell. It offsets nicely with the wall color without being SO in-your-face, and the finish is every-so-slightly glossier than the matte walls. I just used a 1″ brush, and it took forever.
We really need some art on the walls and to fix up that super sad stuff happening on top of the mantle. All in good time.
Obviously, I painted the fireplace the same BM Onyx as the doors, and I really love it. I used to totally hate the tiling work, but now I think I kind of like that too? I don’t know, for some reason now it seems kind of perfectly-antiquey-poopy-brownish-mustard. Masculine might be the word I’m looking for. Anyway. The new paint has really changed my views on them.
I am totally in love with my new lamp, by the way. Like, if I die, and I’m ever reincarnated as a lamp, I think it would look a lot like that.