Interior Painting 6 Step Method


Basics that make a great paint job

Good prep work. We understand the most common problems on a house, the best solutions, and how to deliver those solutions.
Good materials (paint, quality brushes and rollers ...etc).
Clean and quality finished product. Imagine you were inspecting the job for your mom… Is the job site clean? Does the finished product look good.

Step 1 - Choosing color - Interior Paint Sheens

Get the look you want and the protection you need for any room in your home.

It's great to find the perfect color for your interior painting project, but finding the proper sheen is just as important. Choosing the proper sheen for the different surfaces and areas of your home will help you choose the best interior product and get the most from your paint for a beautiful look that will stand the test of time.

We will help you easily choose the best sheen of paint for your upcoming indoor paint projects.


A flat sheen has a non-reflective finish that touches up well and hides minor surface imperfections.

  • Applications: Wood and vinyl walls and siding; brick and other masonry
  • Areas: Family rooms, living rooms, bedrooms, dining rooms,
  • Durability: Me


A matte sheen has a low-luster, reflective finish that is durable, easy to clean, touches up well and also hides minor surface imperfections.

  • Applications: Low-traffic areas; interi
  • Areas: Family rooms, living rooms, kids' rooms, bathrooms, dining rooms,
  • Durability


An eggshell enamel sheen has a soft, velvety appearance that resists dirt and grime, as well as mildew.

  • Applications: Moderate-traff
  • Areas: Family rooms, living rooms, bedrooms, kids' rooms, hallwa
  • Durability


A satin enamel sheen has a pearl-like finish that's easy to clean.

  • Applications: All interior surfaces; moderate- to high-traff
  • Areas: Family rooms, living rooms, bedrooms, kids' rooms, hakitchens, bathrooms, doors, windows, trim, cabinets, shutters, interior f
  • Durability: Medium high


A semi-gloss enamel sheen is sleek and radiant resisting mildew, moisture and wear.

  • Applications: Cabinets and trim; high-traffic, high-moistu
  • Areas: Kids' rooms, hallways, kitchens, bathrooms, doors, window cabinets,
  • Du


Hi-Gloss enamel sheens have a brilliant, shiny appearance and a durable, glass-like finish that allows dirt and grime to be wiped clean.

  • Applications: High-use surfaces
  • Areas: Kitchens, bathrooms, doors, windows, trim, cabinets, shutters, interior furniture
  • Durability: High

Back to top

Step 2 - Preparation

Prepare the room

Clearing out furniture and other items
Placing drop cloths
Caulking cracks
Filling nail holes and other imperfections
Masking and taping

Time required - 2 hours for an average size bedroom

Equipment list

Vacuum cleaner with brush attachment
Step ladder
Stool and tool box combo (optional)
Screwdriver sets
Hammer to pull nails
Putty knife
Multipurpose painter's tool
Razor knife
Caulk gun
1-gallon bucket
Sanding sponge
Dust mask
Drop cloths (9' x 12', 12' x 15', 4' x 12')
Masking and painter tape
Paint brush for priming
Mini-roller for priming (optional)


Lightweight spackle
Spray-on texture (for large holes)
Paintable silicone caulk
Latex primer
Oil-base primer (if needed)



1. Clearing the Room

Clearing the room is an important first step. Ideally we can remove EVERYTHING and store it elsewhere while we paint. We will make every effort to do this, even if have to stack the furniture in the living room or hallway, because it will pay dividends in time saved.

Next, we clean the room. Clear all cobwebs from the corners and vacuum out the closet, especially the shelves where dust gathers. Give the trim a quick vacuum with the brush attachment to clear old dust. Take the pictures off the walls.

Remove the switch plates from the light switches and outlets. Put the plates and screws in a safe place if we are going to re-use them. We recommend getting nice new ones because the old ones will look dingy against the fresh paint.

Take down the curtains and curtain rods. It’s best to remove the curtain-rod holders from the wall, but if leave them in place we will need to cover them with tape later.

Once the room is cleared and all the stuff is off the walls, we completely cover the floor with drop cloths.

2. Filling nail holes and other imperfections

Once we have drop cloths on the ground, it’s time to fill all nail holes with lightweight spackle. If there are holes bigger than a half-inch wide to fix, we use patching tape and joint compound. Cover the hole with tape and give it a few coats of joint compound.

3. Sanding

After the spackle has dried, it’s time to sand the trim. We use a medium or fine grit sanding sponge. If any large holes in the walls we sand them smooth. Once we are done sanding, vacuum all the trim with the brush attachment so it’s ready for caulking.

4. Caulking

Check all the joints in the window and door casings, baseboards and crown molding. Use a dripless caulk gun and paintable caulk to neatly fill these joints, then wipe away any excess.

If there is a hairline crack in the drywall, rub a small amount of caulk into the crack. Using caulk is a better option than spackling because caulk will remain flexible and won’t re-crack as quickly.

We make sure not to leave any caulk out on the wall because it will shine through the finish coat.

5. Masking (Taping)

Masking is the process of applying a combination of tape and masking paper to areas of the room that need to be protected. We strongly recommend to use a hand masker and blade, especially if we are going to be doing more painting than just one room. Put an “awning” of masking paper and tape across the top of each window to shield it from getting speckled. Other items on the walls, like thermostats, fuse boxes, etc. will need to be masked off with tape and paper. We put a piece of 1.5 inch tape over the outlets and light switches to protect them.

6. Priming

Now that we got the room fully masked and all drop cloths in place, it’s time to do necessary priming. Good latex interior primer will work fine for any holes we spackled on the walls. Mildew and water stains will bleed through even the best paint, so it may be necessary to use a stain-blocking primer. Now we are done prepping the room, and frankly, that’s usually the hardest part of this whole process, everything else is more enjoyable because we see solid results.

Back to top

Step 3 - Painting Trims

One of the best kept secrets among paint pros is painting the trim before you paint the walls. Doing the detail work makes the entire job go faster and you get a better result because you don't have to worry about getting paint on the walls.

Remove old paint>

Use a plastic scrub pad and TSP cleaner-soaked sponges to remove residue from the trim.
Remove blistered or chipped paint with a paint scraper, trying not to gouge the wood. Rinse regularly to remove residue as you work.
Sand with 80-grit then 220-grit sandpaper. Remove dust with a lint-free cloth.


Apply caulk to any gaps or cracks around the trim.
Remove any excess product and smooth using a caulk tool or your finger.
Fill holes and gouges with lightweight spackling compound.
Remove the excess material with the edge of a putty knife and let it dry.

Spot priming imperfections

Apply primer to any knots or resin pockets on the trim.
Let the primer dry, and then begin masking all adjacent surfaces with painter's tape. Be sure to seal the edges firmly.
Wipe down the surface with denatured alcohol or a paint deglosser then prime the entire surface with a stain-blocking primer

Apply finishing coat

After 24 hours, apply finishing coat of paint with a 2-inch trim brush.
Remove the painter’s tape while the paint is still wet.

Back to top

Step 4 - Painting ceiling

If we are painting an entire room from scratch, the ceiling should be the first thing we paint in the room. Prep the ceiling before painting. Remove any dust or grime, as this can make it virtually impossible for paint to adhere.

Time required: 6-8 hours for an average size bedroom

Equipment list

1-gallon bucket
3-inch angled paint brush
5-gallon bucket
Roller handle and grid
Roller cover (3/8-inch for smooth wall, 1/2-inch for textured; 3/4-inch to 1 1/4- inch nap required for heavy texture or painting a popcorn ceiling
2-4 foot extendable roller pole and 4-8 foot extendable pole for vaulted or high ceilings
Multipurpose painters tool
1-inch putty knife
Step ladder or stool


For average size bedroom 1 gallon high quality latex ceiling paint, flat sheen (use eggshell wall paint if you want a slightly shiny ceiling that can be cleaned)



Prep the Ceiling and Room for Painting

Make sure that any cracks or holes in the ceiling have been patched with spackle and repaired before we begin painting.
Remove furniture from the room to avoid any splatter or damage from paint and turn off power to the room by shutting off overhead fixtures at the breaker or fuse box.
Remove or bag the ceiling fixtures. Set out all paint tools so that we have everything close at hand.

Protect Area with Drop Cloths

Cover the floor by overlapping drop cloths by at least 12 inches. Protect windows, doors and trim if necessary.

Tape the Walls

Mask off the tops of the walls with 2-inch blue painter's tape. 1-inch tape would allow the roller to strike the wall.

Cut in the Corners

Before we begin rolling, cut in, or use your paint brush to paint the corners where the ceiling meets the wall. Doing this first will ensure that we get the edges and will also allow the roller to cover any brush marks left behind, so the paint blends together better.

Begin Rolling

Begin rolling over the still wet cut-in strip. Keeping a wet edge prevents overlap marks on the finished ceiling. Load the roller regularly and roll slowly. Back-roll to blend the paint and make sure to roll in one direction toward the opposite side of the room. Roll toward yourself but do not roll directly overhead and don't create a "W" pattern. Straight lines are best.

Work in Sections

Work in grid-like sections which helps keep edges wet and allows us to see progress. Cut in with a pad or brush, apply paint with a roller and then roll out applied paint to blend the two areas.
Slightly vary the direction of rolling. Perfectly straight rolling is more likely to show overlap marks. Beginning each section, start by cutting in the wall/ceiling joint.
Continue applying paint, rolling out and blending with the cut-in edge and the previous section until the ceiling is complete.

Check if Second Coat is Needed and Clean Up

If we opted to paint ceiling a brighter color, or simply feel that the white shade you choose could stand out more, a second coat may be needed.
Apply the second coat in one direction, painting quickly until the entire surface is covered. Watch for drips and splatters. Wipe up immediately with a damp rag.
Once all coats have been applied, begin cleaning up the room.

Back to top

Step 5 Painting walls

Properly painting walls starts with removing everything possible, including outlet covers.

Prepare walls for painting

Carefully inspect walls for cracks, holes, dents or other imperfections.
Use caulk or a lightweight spackling compound and a putty knife to fill and repair any holes or imperfections.
Remove excess spackling with the putty knife. Let dry completely.
Use a small piece of very fine 220-grit sandpaper or a sanding sponge to smooth the repaired areas flush with the surface.
Wipe the walls clean with a damp towel or sponge and allow them to dry.

Apply painters tape

Use painter's tape to mask off your moldings, windows, doors and ceiling. Always press the painter's tape down flat and even to prevent bleed-through.

For non-textured surfaces, mask it off where it meets the edge of the wall. Apply your painter’s tape in short, overlapping strips, pressing down firmly along the edge.
If you’re painting walls with a textured ceiling, simply run a screwdriver along the edge of the ceiling to create a small, unnoticeable, texture-free surface. This will make creating a straight paint edge much easier.
If you're planning on having an accent wall, mask off the inside edge of that wall from the rest of the room.

Spread drop cloths

Cover the floors with drop cloths to protect them from paint drips and splatters. Move furniture from smaller rooms or cover furniture with more drop cloths in larger rooms. Minimize your clean-up after painting a room with the right drop cloth.

Canvas drop cloths are extremely durable and absorbent, so they can be reused.
Plastic is durable and less expensive but isn’t absorbent, so spills can be tracked if stepped on.
Paper is the most economical but can tear easily on floors, so it is ideal for covering light fixtures, cabinets and furniture.

Cut in primer (if necessary)

A key step in knowing how to paint a room is mastering the “cut in” painting process. Cutting in is basically outlining the room.
Use a paint brush to create 2- to 3-inch bands around the edges, corners and frames of a room.
When cutting in, you can try to do the entire room at one time. However, your border areas will probably dry before you overlap them. This may result in a slight difference in sheen because the two coats won’t blend.

Prime your walls

Anytime you paint the interior of a house, it's a good idea to prime your walls. Primers are designed to help seal the wall and prevent mold. A primer is essential if you want to go from dark walls to lighter or white walls. Most brands offer paint and primer in one.

Start painting the primer in 3- x 3-foot sections. With a fully loaded paint roller, work top to bottom, rolling back and forth across the wall in a series of V- or W-shaped strokes until the section is covered.
Roll in one section at a time, moving from top to bottom and from one side of the wall to the other.
Reload your roller and paint the next section, covering only as much as you can finish while the primer is still wet. Always overlap areas of wet primer.

Sand primer

After the primer dries, lightly sand away bumps and ridges using very fine grit sandpaper folded into quarters.
When the grit of one section becomes covered with dust, switch to an unused section and continue.
Wipe the wall clean with a damp towel or sponge and allow it to dry.
Gather your tools and wall paint.

Cut in and paint walls

Paint walls one at a time. You'll achieve a smoother, more seamless look because you’ll be able to blend the wet paint you’ve brushed on with wet paint you’re rolling. This is one of the best painting techniques for walls and is called "working to a wet edge."

Working top to bottom, rolling back and forth across the wall in a series of V- or W-shape strokes until the section is covered.
Before reloading your roller and moving to the next section, roll over the area you’ve just painted in a smooth, continuous stroke from top to bottom. These smoothing strokes even the coat and help to cover up lines and tracks.
Overlap areas already painted, lightly lift the roller off the wall to avoid leaving end marks and to seamlessly blend different areas.
Wait 2-4 hours for the first coat to dry before applying a second coat. Follow the exact same process and techniques used when priming your walls. Blend your sections as you go.

Back to top

Step 6 - Cleanup

Remove your painter’s tape right before or right after the paint dries completely. If left on too long, small pieces of the tape can tear and get left behind when being removed. Tightly seal remaining paint in cans, thoroughly clean paint brushes and rollers with warm soapy water, and dispose of used painter’s tape.

Back to top