3 Steps To Save Money By Painting Your Home Yourself

woman about to paint room

We can get a lot of people to do our work for us, whether that’s getting Amazon to deliver our shopping to us, delegate snow shoveling to our kids or young neighbourhood entrepreneurs, or getting someone to paint our homes. With painting especially, we can often do the job ourselves with acceptable results. After all, a passable paint job takes more time than skill. Here are three ways you can save some money by doing your next painting project yourself.

Get the Right Tools

Painting is more than just a bucket of paint and a paint brush. You need to be fully equipped with extra paint brushes, rollers, painting tape, and plastic sheets to keep your house clean. There’s no such thing as a quick paint job, just a job done right with minimal clean up. Getting the right tools makes sure that most of your time will be dedicated to painting, not cleaning up mistakes made along the way.

Use Quality Paint

Quality paint is the best way to get the right look sooner. Many stores will try and sell you bargain basement paint, claiming you can save money through cheaper paint. But cheaper paint requires more coats and more work. If you combine the increased amount of paint and the extra time you spend applying it, a quality paint is actually cheaper overall. But high quality paint is just the first step. Always get the right paint for the job as well. Exterior paint jobs, for example, will look awful and fall apart faster if a person is painting using interior paint. By getting the right paint for the job, you’ll save time and money.

Properly Prepare the Area for Painting

Most problems with people’s paint jobs happen before they’ve even started putting paint on the walls. Alligatoring, peeling, and many other problems are mostly caused by one major factor: a lack of proper preparation. Always prep your walls for a new paint job by sanding it down, replacing or removing damaged parts of the wall, and applying a quality primer as the first couple of coats. A properly prepared wall will look better, last longer, and be less likely to fall prey to many of the problems that come from doing a poor job at the very beginning.

There are many instances when painting projects yourself is the best choice; you can save money and enjoy the work itself by dedicating some time to the job. But there are instances when getting a professional painter is almost entirely necessary. More technical jobs or painting in dangerous areas (like at heights) are best handled by a professional painting contractor. But for your average painting job, you can save some time and money by following the suggestions above. With the right tools, paint, and preparation, you’ll be done before you know it and may even have some left over money. If that’s the case, go out there and treat yourself for a job well done.

Laundry Room Getting You Down? Time To Break Out The Paint!

drab laundry room

One of the rooms most often passed over when it comes time to remodel is the laundry room (unless you’ve got a show box sized laundry room). It’s relatively unvisited by strangers, unless you’ve got a really fancy one. And everytime you visit this room it’s just to load dirty laundry, move laundry to the drier, fold laundry, hang laundry, etc. So why bother putting much effort, or thought into the perfect paint colour for your laundry room?

You have to choose some colour for this room, but leaving it good old “contractor white” is usually never a good idea. So, do you use some leftover paints from one of your other rooms? Do you delve into colour psychology in an attempt to brainwash your significant other to handle all the laundry room chores? Or, perhaps you can find a colour that’ll fill you with bliss in an attempt to make the doing the chores more enjoyable? Goodluck! The truth is that you can do more with your laundry room than just leave it the boring, stale, lifeless husk this room tends to be.

It’s common to find many laundry rooms using the standard neutral adorning the rest of the home. So, what are your options? Generally you’ll want to stick to some sort of a neutral colour but simply add some spark to the room. For instance, take a look at your floor and find a paint colour that’ll go with the styling of your floor is a great way to pull the room together. Most laundry room appliances will be black or white based colour schemes and will go with just about anything. So consider choosing a colour that matches your countertop, this is another way to tie the room together. If this is still putting you to sleep, you can try a cool coastal colour. Consider a light blue or soothing green which tend to be very soft and relaxing, the perfect balance to monotonous boring chores.

If you’re looking for a more dramatic experience with your laundry, brown is definitely a great place to start. Most browns will go with your standard cabinetry, counter top, and run of the mill appliance colour schemes. Brown is a great colour since it plays well with others but still has enough presence to make a statement, also it will do a good job to cover up any bumps and scuffs which inevitably happen during your standard laundry room adventure.

Now, if these colour schemes still aren’t tickling your fancy, it’s time to get more serious. You might want to try a bright, bold, or vivid paint colour. Make sure you pick something that does not stand out incredibly from the rest of your home, if you’re keen on maintaining a harmonious look that is. If in doubt it’s not a bad idea to consult a professional.

In the end, spending a bit of time considering how you want your laundry room to look can really help improve the look of your home. You will end up spending a considerable amount of your time in this room, often simply doing chores, so ensuring that it looks it’s best will help to improve the quality of your life substantially.

Living Room Colours For Those Who Don’t Know

living room with blue paint colour

Living rooms are tricky places when it comes to painting because, unlike sitting rooms or bedrooms, they are communal spaces used for a variety of functions everyday. A living room in the course of a single day could be used for watching television, playing with toys on the floor, and hosting a party in the evening, so picking the right colours that look great while offering some flexibility can be very difficult, especially if you have furniture that you need to match. But have no fear, today we’ll go through some living room colours that will look great, giving some advice for those who don’t know what works and what doesn’t.

living room with blue paint colour
Colour: Blue
When to use it: Calming, welcoming spaces
Blue is a generally calming colour, it gives a relaxing feel to any room, but especially living rooms, where guests and inhabitants will frequently go to chill out and relax. it works especially well in small spaces. As far as colours go, as in not-neutrals like greys and whites, blue is a popular choice for very good reasons.

grey paint colour in living room
Colour: Grey
When to use it: Rooms with great art
Grey is often thought of as a cold choice, distant and detached, but there are great greys out there that have warm undertones. Greys are especially great in rooms where you have a lot of art on the walls because it blends into the background so easily. If you have a room where the stuff on the walls, not the walls themselves, are what you want to showcase, then a grey may just be your best choice.

living room with brown paint colours
Colour: Browns
When to use it: Rooms with lots of wood furniture or textiles
Browns are the most overlooked colour choice for living rooms because people simply don’t think about it. What’s great about this colour, though, is it becomes a great choice while not being too flashy. Deep browns are great for rooms with lots of texture, like wood furniture or textiles, because it highlights the feel of these rooms. But browns are fundamentally unobtrusive because they are a support colour rather than a colour that draws attention to itself.

den area painted with red paint colours
Colour: Red
When to use it: With traditional furniture, to highlight a “masculine” feel
Reds are a great choice for dens because they are a bold choice while staying familiar. They are especially great for rooms with old style furniture because it highlights these choices and gives a room a classic feel over trying to be dynamic in itself. Deep reds are also great for more “masculines” rooms. Not bars or where you watch the game, but where you would smoke a cigar. Living rooms in particular can benefit from reds if they are used less for TV and more for entertaining.

Choosing living room colours can be a scary choice for anyone who doesn’t keep up with the interior decorating world, but it isn’t nearly as hard as most think. When choosing colours for your living room, think about the furniture that you have and what you do in the room. With that information, picking the right paint colour can actually be really easy.

Looking someone to help make your living room look it’s best? Feel free to contact us.

How To Choose The Right Kitchen Paint Colours

kitchen in need of a paint job

Everyone knows the phenomenon: people at parties always end up in the kitchen. This may be because that’s where the food is, it may be because there’s always lots of activity, or it may simply be the best smelling room in the house. Whatever the reason, kitchens offer a great space to gather and hang out, so choosing the right kitchen paint colours are essential for anyone considering a new coat of paint in the room that attracts guests. But every kitchen is a little different and so are the people who use the, but here are some tips we have on how to choose the right kitchen paint colours.

Kitchens are unlike any other room in our homes not only because of their function, but from a painter’s perspective, they offer less wall space but just as much painting space. Actual walls in kitchens, on average, only take up about half of the kitchen wallspace. The rest is dedicated to cabinets, trim, and other spaces. This makes kitchens especially exciting and also a little daunting.

When thinking about kitchen colours, you have to consider each of the things you are painting. Cupboards, trim, and walls are rarely painted the same colour, so kitchens can be a fun place to experiment with multiple colours. So when you are painting a kitchen, don’t think just one colour, but an entire design.

Colour palettes in 2014 are moving towards natural, seaside-inspired hues, so look for blues and yellows that remind guests of the oceanfront. Brighter colours and softer hues go well together and make for a welcoming space to guests and family members.

Always consider the furniture you have or plan to have as well. Lighter furniture, especially at breakfast bars, benefits from more welcoming and lighter colours. Just be careful not to wash out a space, always look for brighter colours against very light, weathered, or faded furniture.

When picking kitchen colours, it’s also important to think about the connecting rooms as well. A dining room right next to the kitchen, for example, should complement the colours in the kitchen to avoid harsh transitions. While use of what I like to call ‘statement colours,’ colours that people notice when they enter a room (they make a statement), try not to make every colour in your kitchen a statement colour. Instead, just like cuisine these days, stick with a couple of basics and a deciding flavour to bring out the natural beauty of your selections. Simple is always better than complicated, both with cooking in the kitchen and the paint on the walls. Luckily, with the huge selection of colours from Benjamin Moore finding the ideal scheme should be pretty simple.

Finally, don’t forget about your kitchen’s “fifth wall,” the ceiling! Painted ceilings can make a statement or really tie a room together. Whatever your choices, just make sure your kitchen paint colours offer a casual, welcoming, and comforting feel. Your guests will all gather there, so they should feel welcome right down to the walls.

4 Reasons Benjamin Moore Paint Beats The Other Guys

benjamin moore paint chips

For decades, Benjamin Moore paint has stood head and shoulders above competing brands. The name has become synonymous with high quality and stunning colour and is widely available. Besides being environmentally friendly, chosen frequently by professional painting contractors, and one of the safest paints on the market, Benjamin Moore’s quality paints are the best decision for any paint job, from fences to bathrooms to your child’s bedroom makeover.

Here are four reasons that Benjamin Moore is better than most of the other paints on the shelf.

1. Versatility

Benjamin Moore offers a wide variety of paints to match whatever your next project demands. Depending on your next project, your may need something extremely durable, or easily applicable, or leaves a beautiful and stunning finish. With an entire line of quality paints, from the Aura Exterior Paint to their patented Arborcoat Waterborne Exterior Stain, Benjamin Moore has exterior paints that cover any job. The same versatility is here for your indoor renovations as well. Such as great paints for steamy bathrooms or your kid’s race car-themed makeover.

2. Colour Selection

Benjamin Moore has some of the widest selections in the world, with over 2500 colours and mixes to choose from. No matter what your interior or exterior needs, Benjamin Moore has a colour that will make your neighbours stop and notice. From soft greens to bold reds, Benjamin Moore paint will make any room pop, any exterior surface shine with a unique colour available exclusively from Benjamin Moore. Not to mention

3. High Quality

Benjamin Moore paint uses only the highest quality materials and comply with the strictest environmental standards in the world. This means your paint will be more durable, look great for longer, and be safe for you and your family. Whereas other paint can lose its colour, chip, or can’t even hold up to a thorough scrubbing. The quality of Benjamin Moore paints will keep your house looking great for longer.

4. Your Time

People buying paint often think they cannot afford Benjamin Moore paint and that a “bargain” paint is a better option simply for being cheaper. However, when you factor how much more paint you will need for the same job, plus all the extra time applying coat after coat, the price of bargain paint becomes less of a bargain and more of a hassle. When you combine the hours lost and extra paint with the quicker time bargain paints take to fade, they are actually significantly more expensive. Benjamin Moore paints are second to none for quality and require less work and certainly less headaches to apply. In addition, your newly painted walls will look better for much, much longer.

No matter what your next project, the various products and colours offered by Benjamin Moore paints will be the best decision you can make. Combining environmentally friendly materials with only the highest of quality, Benjamin Moore paint has the colour you want in the style you need. Your next paint project will surely turn the most heads when you choose Benjamin Moore.

Exterior Painting In Winter, A Disaster Waiting To Happen

home about to be painted in the middle of winter

Exterior painting is a difficult task even during the best of summer days, but it’s even more difficult during our frigid Toronto months. Most professional painters simply refuse exterior painting jobs in the winter and for good reason. Turns out it isn’t the working conditions that make professionals shy away, it’s the poor results. The cold and varying moisture levels can wreak havoc on your work, cracking and even changing colour, so it’s important to either wait for summer or be prepared with more than just a winter jacket.

Today we look at the two biggest challenges for winter painting and offer some painting tips to get the job done. Just be aware, if you can leave the job until summer, spending the winter home decorating is a better choice, and has more stable results.

The Problem with Painting in Winter

Moisture and temperature are the two biggest problems facing the aspiring winter painter, but both can be controlled. Temperature is the most obvious concern, not simply because it makes the paint thicker. Curing is a delicate process and cold temperatures makes the paint cure slowly and unevenly. Latex paint has an especially difficult time in the cold because the latex particles will harden, leaving you with wasted efforts. You’ll find the application process is also more difficult with thicker paint, another result of cold products. Even spray paint is known to crack in the cold.

Even worse than the cold is dramatic changes in temperature. While you may be tucked away in your warm bed, your paint is left out in the cold and paint hates cooling down. As the sun goes down, the paint will become increasingly viscous, but not evenly. Changing temperatures lead to uneven curing, so the paint will start to blister and peel because it can’t bond to the house properly. Painting vinyl siding can be especially difficult because vinyl shrinks dramatically in cool temperatures and expands in the heat.

Moisture is the second major problem for winter painting. Rain and dew are constant problems, so painters have to be extra careful to minimize moisture to let the paint cure on its own year round. Moisture in the winter, however, is even harder to control.

Winter drizzle and drifting snow will react with your paint in ways that can and will look pretty terrible. Dampness and condensation can lead to discolouring and blushing, ruining all of your outdoor work. With the weather being that much more unpredictable in winter, moisture becomes more difficult to control as well. As temperatures hover around zero, the water can expand, contract, and bond with your paint as well, leading to discolouring and improper drying.

All of these problems can lead to a poorly performing paint job that needs to be redone come summertime.

The Solutions

Cold temperature paints can help with the chilly weather, being specially designed to cure at lower temperatures, usually at around 1.5 degrees Celsius instead of above 10c. A high quality product recommended by your local paint store is a good place to start.

You’ll also have to take your time. Colder paint takes much longer to cure, so make sure you give it longer than usual between coats. Alkyd paints in particular will need time, so give the paint ample time between coats.

We can’t control the weather, but we’re pretty good at predicting it, so check the forecast for both temperature and moisture before starting. There’s no point in painting if rain is on the way, and stretches of relatively stable temperatures are highly recommended.

Make sure to paint between 10 AM and 2 PM to help with the application. Paint thickens in the cold, so it’ll be more malleable during midday. As for mixing, your project will take over some of your more heated areas. Paint is harder to mix when cold, so mix it at room temperature.

If exterior painting has to happen in the colder months, minimize the elements you can control. Scaffolding and controlling the environment can help as well. Tarps and heaters can give you that extra bit of control as well. So, if you just have to get the job done, make sure you’re prepared. And an extra pair of socks will go a long way.

For more advice on getting your winter painting projects completed, give us a call.

Do You Need to Prime Before You Paint?

is primer necessary?

A question we get asked a LOT is whether or not primer is really necessary. While there are some very specific instances where you do not need primer, in almost all cases it is very necessary. Primer serves several essential purposes in painting. In this post, we’ll go over some of the most common reasons that you would want to prime before painting.

Many people are tempted to go without using primer. Be aware that in many cases this will actually end up costing you more money, and leave you with an inferior paint job. Don’t skimp out on the primer.

There are several types of primer, for different surfaces and uses. Some primers are designed only to be used on wood, while others are specially formulated to fill up and seal drywall. It’s important to pick the right primer for your job. By educating yourself on the purpose of priming, you will be able to determine which primer to choose when it comes time to go shopping for paint.

Primer Seals Surfaces And Helps The Finish Adhere

Primer sticks well to surfaces, sealing them up and providing a nice surface for your finishing coat. This is important in many cases. For porous surfaces, you will want to prime to seal up the little pores so that the finish can adhere. If you are painting on top of old paint, you will want to prime, otherwise the new paint may not stick, and you will get peeling. Another use of the sealant quality of primer is to eliminate odors that may be trapped in the walls, such as cat urine or smoke odors.

If you are painting in a humid area, it is a good idea to use primer, or you may find your paint peeling very quickly. A peeling paint job can be a nightmare, as it usually peels enough to look terrible, but not enough to be easy to remove. This means you will spend a lot of time prepping the surface to re-do all your paint. Hopefully with primer this time.

Tip: Never paint over oil paint with latex without using a primer. It will peel off, sooner or later.

Provides A Good Solid Foundation For Colour

Primer is also good for keeping stains and other objects from bleeding through the finish coat. If there is a lot of spackle or wood knots on the surface, it’s a good idea to prime first to cover up these areas, or the inconsistencies will show through and look bad.

If you are painting bright or bold colors, primer can add to that colour by providing a good strong colour foundation to paint on top of. Be aware that dark primer will show through light paint, and plan your colours accordingly. In the same way, dark stains on a wall will show through light-coloured coat of paint. Priming first will cut down on this problem.

By sealing up the surface, you also eliminate the problem of your surface absorbing a lot of paint. Spackle, drywall, and other substances will absorb a lot of paint. If you don’t use primer first, you will have to paint many coats of your finish, as each coat is absorbed by the surface materials. Using primer cuts down on the amount of finishing paint you will need to use. As primer is usually cheaper than finishing paint, you will also be saving money, as well as time.

If you’re looking to buy primer in Toronto we carry a wide variety of products suitable for every situation you can imagine, simply contact us for more info.

Three Reasons To Buy High-Quality Paint

why buy high quality paint

When selecting a paint product for your project the choices can sometimes seem overwhelming, there are quite a number of products to choose from whether you are looking to paint your interior, or exterior. Making a final decision can sometimes come down to price, but there are many reasons why you may want to avoid price shopping for your paint, and opt instead to purchase a high-quality paint product.

Paint Difficult Colours Faster, With Less Coats

One aspect to consider when shopping for paint is paint colour. Deciding on a paint colour, can be for some, an arduous process involving many hours spent pouring over paint chips under various lighting conditions. At others times, some people may simply choose a colour on a whim. Regardless of how you decide your paint colour, it is always a good idea to think about paint quality if you are selecting a challenging colour.

Fact is that some paint colours are easier than others to accurately reproduce in your home. If you select a difficult colour, such as a deep red or bold yellow, and decide to buy a low-cost paint you may end up needing four or even five coats of paint before you end up with a colour that you’re satisfied with. Even then, it may not look exactly how you pictured it. If you are not sure whether your colour will be difficult, consult with the staff at your local paint store, they will have excellent insight into the difficulty of painting many colours.

The best way to avoid these sorts of problems is to select a paint product that can tackle these challenging colours in only a few coats. Benjamin Moore’s Aura is one such product, able to paint beautifully bold red colours in often as little as two coats.

Paint Once and Forget About Repainting

When purchasing lower-cost paint many people will inevitably run into the need to repaint their home. This is because economy grade paint simply does not contain the same ingredients, and is not made to last or stand up to abuse like high-quality premium paints are. As times passes the true nature of these economy grade paints begin to show, some common problems include:

  • Fading colours
  • Cracking, peeling paint
  • Inability to clean without damaging paint surface
  • Low resistance to scuff marks
  • Poor touch-up characteristics

Generally, one of the biggest problems with many paint jobs is that people have opted for highly affordable paint that does not stand up to the test of time. However, while trying to save a few dollars their choice usually results in an overall increased cost of their paint job when considering how often they may need to repaint. They’ll either have to spend the time themselves repainting, or hire professionals to complete the job for them.

A premium paint product will avoid many of these issues and will hold up well to being cleaned and provide fantastic touch-up characteristics. Purchasing quality paint products is a much better investment when considering the total cost of home painting over the lifespan of typical home ownership.

Brands Aren’t Everything

While this tip may not deal specifically with why you should buy high-quality paint, it’s worth noting that when deciding on a paint product you should be buying based upon an ideal solution for your specific situation, not based on the latest marketing gimmick.

While a paint brand may have a compelling advertisement, it’s always a good idea to ensure that you’re buying a product based on more than simply an ad you saw on television. Take a minute to speak with the staff at your local paint store. You’ll often find that you can gain some very useful insight by simply explaining what you’d like to paint to someone who has a wealth of knowledge. This is the best way to always find the ideal paint solution for your decorating project.