10 Painting tips How to Master “Cutting in” like a Pro
Paint around the edges of a room before you decide to roll the walls to get a professional finish. Before you start rolling the walls, painting the perimeter of your room in your home with a brush, or “cutting in” as it is called, is definitely an important part of the decorating process. Cutting in corners the spot that the two adjoining wall surfaces are identical colour is fairly straightforward.
But where beginners may encounter problems is around ceilings, mouldings and other areas that require a perfectly straight line of paint. To help you boost pace and precision of your technique, here is our foolproof self-help guide to cutting in.
1 – Use a different container
Rather than dipping your brush into the tin the paint comes in, change a small amount to some separate container. Fill just about 25mm of paint to the pot, because this will prevent you from dipping in your brush too deep, decrease the weight and then make washing up simpler if you spill any. Your local hardware store must have plastic paint pots for about $4, or metal cans around $8. Getting rid of the rim of your empty paint tin with a can opener will also give you a fully usable container. You may also use empty ice ceram containers.
2 – Pat your brush
Wiping the brush on the edge of a container after dipping it’s really a popular process, however it is not very efficient. It’s better to dip the bristles about 25mm to the paint and after that just pat the brush against opposite sides of the container. With that volume of paint within the brush, you will be able to cover much more of the surface area before you need to reload it.
3 – Wiggle brush into corners
Moving the brush just a little in tight corners will help the paint relieve more effectively. Wiggling the brush is another good method for filling in areas you might have missed as you make a second pass. Just a little shake will be all which is needed to get great results.
4 – Mask only the tops
When you master cutting in, you’ll just have to apply masking tape towards the tops of windows, doors and skirting boards. The reason behind doing this is to avoid getting any paint spatters on the trim when you begin rolling the paint onto the walls. Masking significantly less you will save money and time, and you also don’t have to worry about paint creeping beneath the tape or the job being messed up when you pull off the tape.
5 – Buy a sash brush
Plenty of professional painters will cut in well with square-edge brushes, however for most people, angled sash brushes are easier to control. You can fan the angled tips out to get a fine line of paint, and the angle makes it less difficult to get properly into corners with an even spread. A 63mm wide sash brush is generally pretty much right for most interior room painting. However, if you’re painting windows or other small parts of trim, also buy a smaller 50mm sash brush, as it will certainly aid accuracy and be easier to manage.
6- Use bright lighting
To be able to paint a precise cut-in line, you will need to be standing up in the position where you can look at line clearly. It’s also important that you use a bright light, and a great tip is by using a torch headlight. For cutting in around the ceiling, get your head as close to it as practical to give you the most effective view of the line.
7- Operate up to the line
When cutting in against a ceiling or another surface area where a straight line is required, start by sweeping into the line to unload a bit of paint onto the wall. Don’t be concerned about getting near on the first pass, and without reloading your brush, make a second pass in order to coax the paint closer to the line. Fan the bristles so you’re using the tip of the taper to distribute the paint in a straight line. You may also have to make a third pass to accomplish a flawlessly straight cut-in line.
8 – Add in conditioner
Professionals will often recommend adding conditioner to the water-based paint you’re using for cutting in. Check out at your nearby hardware store for paint additives or conditioners. It is possible to just add a little to the pot each time you refill it or, if you’d like to measure it, mix in about one tablespoon per cup of paint. The conditioner will help the paint flow better, that extends the wet edge, reduces brush marks and makes it less difficult to obtain a straight line.
9 – Fix up mistakes
Even experts may end up having paint where it isn’t really supposed to go. To remove paint, wrap a damp rag around a putty knife, after that carefully slide the knife around the trim. Make sure the material is only one layer thick to achieve the best result. Also clean up immediately, as once the paint begins to dry, more difficult measures will be needed to get rid off it. Another problem can be if the wall is by accident knocked and damaged otherwise you discover imperfections in the paint finish.
But there isn’t any need to repaint the entire wall, as you can use Retouch, which transforms the paint into an aerosol spray to seamlessly touch up any defects.
10 – Feather the edge
When you find yourself happy with the cut-in line, apply a neater finish by feathering or thinning the edge. Without reloading the brush, drag the tips in the bristles lightly on the outside edge to distribute the paint in a thin layer and get rid of any ridges or extra build-up. This feathering step ensures that the cut-in line won’t appear as a stripe just after rolling the walls.
- Wash down walls with sugar soap to ensure a clean surface before painting.
- Fill and sand any imperfection before painting for a professional finish.
- The key to getting a professional finish is using quality paint and quality brushes and rollers.