Before I can paint my craft room, I have to prepare for painting. That is going to involve the following tasks:
- Repairing a hole in the wall
- Repairing blemishes
- Prepare the trim
- Prepare the baseboards
- Miscellaneous items
(This post contains affiliate links to some of the items I used in this project. It just means that you will help to support my blog if you make a purchase after clicking the links. There is no added cost to you!)
Repairing a Hole in the Wall
The hole in the wall was a door bell and intercom system that was here when we moved in but doesn’t really work. It’s old and yellowed and I don’t really need it in the craft room. We decided it needed to go. When we removed it from the wall, we found that the hole was as large as the device. That meant a drywall patch.
Time to learn a new skill to prepare for painting!
After watching several YouTube videos on various methods and knowing that this patch would sit behind my new pegboard, we chose the following method to repair the drywall to prepare for painting the room.
Trimming the hole
The hole was a little irregular so we needed to trim it for a good fit of the drywall patch.
We first cut a piece of scrap drywall to 5″ x 7″. This is a little larger than the current hole in the wall. After measuring and marking, we used a box knife to score the paper layer of the drywall, then to make repeated cuts to work through the drywall.
Holding the patch over the hole in the wall, we traced around the edge of the patch piece then scored the wall with a box knife. Using a straight-edge and repeated cuts, we cut the hole to fit the plug.
Inserting the Plug
The metal frame of the doorbell/intercom is attached on the right side to a stud. The left side is not attached to anything. We ran a bead of Liquid Nails around the frame then carefully pushed the plug into the space so that it was just beneath the surface of the wall. This required some light rapping all around. Don’t push too hard or you will have to try to retrieve the plug from the opening.
Patching the Drywall Plug
To give some strength to the joining of the drywall plug to the rest of the wall, we used an aluminum mesh drywall patch and spackling. The mesh patch was self-adhesive. We simply centered it over the drywall plug and lightly rubbed it to make it stick to the wall.
The spackling I bought is pink when it goes on and turns white when dry. These pink-while-wet products have been around for quite a while but this is the first time I used one. The color reminds me of bubble gum.
Once it turned white, I sanded it with 80 grit sand paper until I could feel no ridges in the spackling. I sanded until I could just start to see the impression of the mesh. Using the same spackling, I applied another coat, though this one was a very thin coat. Once dry, I sanded again. To remove all the dust from sanding, I vacuumed with the brush attachment then used a slightly damp towel.
By blemishes, I mean gouges from the previous owners, dings from when we moved in, or the cold air return that was painted to the wall. These all needed to be done to prepare for painting.
Cold Air Return
Why do painters just paint over the vents in a room? This just bugs me. I had to cut around the cold air return in the craft room to “disconnect” it from the paint on the walls, dig through the paint on the screws so the screwdriver could do its job, then remove the cold air return without ripping the paper layer of the drywall. Once it was off, I had to sand down the painted edge so the painting would go on smoothly.
Prepare the Trim
When we bought this house, it was about 20 years old. It doesn’t appear that the previous owners really cared too much for the upkeep of the house. The trim has some wear from what appears to be windows left open during rain storms. No matter what the plan for this room, we had to prepare the trim for for finishing.
Giving the trim a light sanding also helps to give the surface some “tooth” so the paint will adhere better.
With the contours of the trim, I chose to go with the newer types of spongy sanding blocks that can conform to the shape and contour of the trim. They also are supposed to cut down on the amount of build-up in the sanding surface. It made faster work of the sanding than having to get sandpaper into the grooves in the trim. After sanding, I first used the brush attaching of my vacuum to remove sanding dust then used a damp rag to wipe down the surface to remove any remaining dust.
Prepare the Baseboards
The baseboards were in bad shape. It looks like they were not cleaned before the latest coat of wall paint. Against the top of the baseboard was a layer of caulk. On top of that was a layer of accumulated dust, grime and cigarette smoke over which the flippers painted and added more caulk. I decided to scrape all that off, which added a lot of time to prepare the room. I’m glad I got rid of the old. I will “feel” better in that room knowing how much attention I have given it to do a good job. I followed the scraping with sanding.
Here is a little segue: I don’t tape off a room too much when I paint so you won’t see much tape in my pictures. I’ve gotten pretty good at painting over the years and actually like it. In my post on painting, I will give you some of the tips that I have learned. For me, painting is an opportunity to queue up some podcasts or some favorite music and just be in my own head for a time. My husband can’t stand painting. He avoids it and is quite happy to let me do all the painting. We are planning to give his home office a makeover and I have offered to paint it for him.
The last couple of items to prepare for painting were the phone jack and the cable jack in this room.
We don’t have a “land line” in our house. We have a house phone but it is VoIP (Voice over IP) and we use the Ooma Service (this is not an affiliate link) and have no need for the old phone jacks. I cut the wires from that, taped the ends, and will cover it with a flat outlet cover (the kind with no openings).
The cable jack is a coax cable and just needed to be unscrewed. The cable will remain in the wall. That will also receive a flat outlet cover.
Ready for Paint
With the above complete, I swept the ceiling (lightly brushed it with a broom), wiped down the walls, and vacuumed all the carpeting.
I used heavy paper to tuck under the baseboards to protect the carpeting and I taped some of the trim.
With the above preparations complete, I’m finally ready to paint!
I hope you were able to learn some techniques to help you when you need to prepare a room for painting. In my next post, I will prime and paint. I will do the ceiling, walls, trim, baseboards, and the ceiling fan blades. I’m excited to see how it will look!