Painting perfectedPublished on May 21, 2014

  • Photo provided 

  • photo provided

As the painter and colour co-ordinator on 
W Network and HGTV’S Divine Design for 
seven years, I would often work late in the evening, in between camera work. Painting under pressure, with one eye on the clock and another on Chico, the trusty electrician, was a challenge 
that I met by ensuring I had the basics covered. The components to a perfect paint job include preparation, preparation and application.


Take the pictures off the wall. I have painted many a home where the owner had previously painted around the picture frames.

Clear the room of as much furniture as possible and cover all exposed floors. Use a cloth drop sheet instead of plastic as it absorbs small amounts of paint and doesn’t transfer to shoes, like plastic will.

Clean the walls properly. A trisodium phosphate mixture will remove any grease on your wall. This is particularly important if the paint job is near the kitchen.

Make sure all cracks, nail pops and holes are filled, sanded and spot primed before paint is applied. Add pressure to any hole by pushing the butt end of a putting knife into it. This creates a crater, allowing the plaster to fill the hole while gliding along a flat wall.

Use a quick-setting plaster so that it can be reapplied the same day if need be. For baseboards, apply a thin bead of caulking to the seam, then run your finger along it to smooth it out.

Sand the entire wall surface with high-quality 100-grit  sandpaperâ€" anything by 3M will do â€" before applying a topcoat.

Application: Quality & Colour

A quality brush will typically cost around $20-$25; don’t be fooled by brushes and rollers sold in bundles. It’s a hassle to pick bristles off the wall! Make sure the bristles have an angle cut, which makes “cutting in” or painting around the edges a lot easier.

Choose a lint-free roller. I always wrap tape around any new roller and remove it until I see absolutely no lint on the tape.

When taping for any faux finishes or just masking your windows and trim, make sure you use only ScotchBlue Painter’s Tape. It won’t pull the paint off when you’re done.

Quality paints provide a uniform coat, have great adhesion to surfaces, are washable and have excellent coverage. All brands have really good top-line products. My current favourites are Behr’s 2-in-1 primer plus paint and Sherwin-Williams’s top lines.


Choose a tone from one of your room anchors, or from personal inspirations like your closet! Your clothes are a reflection of your tastes. You have a colour palette of your very own â€" use it to inspire the colour selection for your home. 

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