One of the things that separates a professional finish on a home interior is the crisp separation of colors where two colors of paint meet. It’s something that home owners will get frustrated with quickly, but today we’re going to give you five easy steps to achieve that picture perfect look for your next painting project.

  1. image009First color – rough out a line for your first color and apply the paint. If you’re using a paint that requires multiple coats, apply them as part of your first step. Paint slightly beyond the line you’ve roughed in for your transition area – if you’re concerned about show through where dark and light colors will be meeting, simply paint the light color first.
  2. Tape your transition – that blue painters tape really is amazing stuff, so apply it along the line where your transition should be. Don’t apply the tape until the first color is dry. When applying your tape line, be sure to stick it slightly above the leading edge from your first coat of paint.
  3. The “brush up” trick – this is the real magic in our five step process. Take your FIRST color and a small brush and go along the tape line, brushing gently into the tape edge. Painting against the edge helps to seal the color in by taking advantage of the fact that a little paint is likely to bleed along the leading edge of the tape no matter what you do. This way, the tape edge is sealed with your first color, allowing for clean paint edges between the two colors when your remove your blue tape. Do take care to feather the paint away from the tape as well as brushing “into” the tape so that you avoid a thick buildup of either color at the edge of the tape.
  4. Add your second color – once the paint from the “brush up” has dried, add your next color, taking care to overlap the line of tape. Apply the appropriate number of coats and then put your feet up and watch that pretty paint dry.
  5. Remove your tape – once the appropriate interval has passed and your paint is dry, hop up and
    remove that line of tape. Pull it at a 90-degree angle, keeping the tension on the tape as even as possible. This helps maximize the impact of your clean paint edges by preventing nicks in the perfect line you’ve created. Then, stand back and admire your crisp, clean pro-finish paint job.

We hope this simple five-step process can help you minimize the effort required to get those all important clean paint edges for your next interior paint job. Good luck, and happy painting, just like the professional painters do it.

Back to top