<font size="3" color="#990000"><strong>How to Paint Your Walls</strong></font> <p><span style="line-height: 200%; font-family: ‘Verdana’,’sans-serif’; letter-spacing: 1pt; font-size: 10pt">Decorating is an activity undertaken by almost every home owner at some stage or another and more often than not involves an element of wall painting. Wall colors and the type of paint you chose can set the entire look and feel of a room and therefore applying it in the correct way is essential. In this article we explore the best ways in which to paint walls.</span></p><span style="line-height: 200%; font-family: ‘Verdana’,’sans-serif’; letter-spacing: 1pt; font-size: 10pt"><p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal"><strong>Preparation</strong></p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">Preparation is without doubt the most important phase when painting walls. This is because finish is everything in today’s market place and you won’t be able to achieve a good finish without solid preparation.</p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">Before beginning you will need to look at the state of your walls. Look for dust, wet patches and any cracks. These need to be cleaned up and removed before you begin painting. If your wall is cracked then you should fill them using a product like Polyfilla. However if the wall is damaged then a re-plastering might be required. Re-plastering your wall will ensure a good quality finish if done right.</p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">If the re-plastering or Polyfilla approach is not for you then you could consider putting up decorating wall paper first. This helps ensure you have a smooth wall in which to paint on. In older houses this can be an extremely effective approach. In some instances home owners will be painting over the top of old wall paper. In both scenarios home owners will need to ensure that the paper is glued down properly and that there are no curling edges.</p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">Once the walls have been looked at then you will need to start putting down dust sheets and furniture covers. It’s very easy for paint to get everywhere and can easily ruin carpets and furniture. When laying these down make sure that they go right the edges of your room.</p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">Now that the room has been setup you will need to look at the equipment you will be using. Different products will give different looks. For example are you going to use a roller or traditional paints? What sized brushes are you going to use? These are all questions that need to be taken into consideration before beginning.</p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">The next and probably the most crucial decision you need to make is what paint to use? Paint is available in a range of different colors and finishes. Different houses will achieve different levels of results with different finishes. Paint companies will be able to advise you on this.</p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal"><strong>Painting</strong></p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">Before beginning painting you should understand that a rushed job will deliver a poor finish and time should be taken to setup your work space properly. Decorators should lay some flattened corrugated box on the floor and set out their tools. Organization is key and will make it much easier for when you return to do another days painting.</p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">Once you have setup your work space you should dip the bristles of your brush between half and two thirds of the way in to the paint tin. It’s important not to get paint on the ferrule which is the metal part of the brush which holds the bristles together. Once dipped you need to remove the excess paint on the side of the tin.</p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">Now that you have applied the paint to your brush you can begin painting. Decorators should start from the ceiling and work their way down. Most people like to paint a 3 inch border around the edges of the walls first as they are the trickiest parts.</p><p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal"> </p><div style="text-align: center"><object classid="clsid:D27CDB6E-AE6D-11cf-96B8-444553540000" codebase="http://download.macromedia.com/pub/shockwave/cabs/flash/swflash.cab#version=6,0,29,0" width="425" height="282"><param name="movie" value="../images/banners/10b.swf" /><param name="quality" value="high" /><param name="menu" value="false" /><param name="wmode" value="" /><embed src="../images/banners/10b.swf" wmode="" quality="high" menu="false" pluginspage="http://www.macromedia.com/go/getflashplayer" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="425" height="282"></embed></object></div>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">When painting the wall you should be careful to ensure that the paint is spread evenly over the wall and in most cases you will need to apply several coats. Once painted you need to give the paint time to dry properly. Once the paint is applied you will need to begin the clean up stage.</p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal"><strong>Cleaning Up</strong></p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">The cleaning up process is probably the least exciting but doing this properly will keep your brushes and paint in good condition for next time. Firstly you will need to get the paint off the brushes. This will involve the use of warm water and white spirit. White spirit is one of the only ways to remove paint from brushes effectively.</p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">Once the paint has been removed from the brushes you will need to consider how you will store the remaining paint. Paint should be kept away from children and lids need to be firmly closely.</p>  <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">The most important thing to take away is that time and planning is essential to a successful project.</p>   <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal"><strong>About the Author</strong></p>  <p><span style="line-height: 200%; font-family: ‘Verdana’,’sans-serif’; letter-spacing: 1pt; font-size: 10pt">Richard Hall – Writer for The Little Greene the <a href="http://www.thelittlegreene.com/" target="_blank">interior paint colours</a> specialist.</span></p></span>