In this video, Ask This Old House expert painter Mauro Henrique shows host Kevin O’Connor the tips and tricks to painting like a pro.
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Kevin O’Connor meets expert painter Mauro Henrique to discuss painting techniques. Mauro begins by showing Kevin how a professional painter holds a paintbrush. Then, Mauro loads the brush with paint and shows Kevin how to properly paint a piece of baseboard. After purposely dabbing the wall with paint, Mauro shows Kevin how to wipe it up before discussing the merits of painter’s tape.
It Starts With the Grip
To paint like a pro, you have to hold the brush like a pro. Lay the handle of the brush flat over the back of your thumb while holding the ferrule (the metal part that holds the bristles together) between your index and middle finger. The point of a slanted brush should be on the finger side, not the thumb side.
The Two-Finger Rule
Next, you need to know how much paint to load the brush with. Mauro suggests dipping the brush into the paint can just far enough so there is two fingers’ width of paint on the end of the brush. Too much paint and the ferrule will become loaded, affecting the way the brush paints. Too little, and the paint job will take forever.
Once loaded, wipe a bit of the excess paint off in the bucket.
Start Low and Work Your Way to the Edge
When painting baseboards, you don’t have to take the brush directly to the seam between the wall and molding. Instead, start lower on the baseboard until the paint is flowing. Then, slowly work toward the seam, dragging paint up to the joint. This prevents puddling at the seam, resulting in much sharper lines. If the paint pooled where you started, smooth it out with the brush.
Clean Up Mistakes While They’re Wet
If an errant brushstroke should touch down on the wall, don’t worry—wet paint is pretty easy to clean. If you keep a damp cloth nearby, you can stretch the fabric over a finger and wipe the wet paint off the wall. Just be sure to wad the excess cloth up in your palm to prevent it from touching the wet baseboard.
Even Pros Use Painter’s Tape [https://amzn.to/30TA0ja]—Sometimes
There are times when even the pros use painter’s tape. When they’re painting against finished surfaces like flooring and woodwork, they’ll often stretch tape across the surface to protect it. However, when it comes to painting walls and trim, they typically forego the tape in lieu of their skills and steady hands.
Where to find it?
Mauro demonstrated cutting techniques using a Picasso 2-½” angle cut brush [https://amzn.to/3nC7SK5], which is manufactured by Proform Technologies [https://www.proformtech.com/], and a Wooster [https://www.woosterbrush.com/] 3” flat brush [https://amzn.to/3DH2XNF]. Both of these brushes, among others, can be found at most home centers and paint supply stores. The paint Mauro used on the trim was Ultra Pure White [https://bit.ly/32qzpGk]—which is manufactured by Behr [https://www.behr.com/consumer/].
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From the makers of This Old House, America’s first and most trusted home improvement show, Ask This Old House answers the steady stream of home improvement questions asked by viewers across the United States. Covering topics from landscaping to electrical to HVAC and plumbing to painting and more. Ask This Old House features the experts from This Old House, including general contractor Tom Silva, plumbing and heating expert Richard Trethewey, landscape contractor Jenn Nawada, master carpenter Norm Abram, and host Kevin O’Connor. Ask This Old House helps you protect and preserve your greatest investment—your home.
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