Do I really need Primer before Painting a Wall?

Do I really need Primer before Painting a Wall?

Firstly the question will be about the surface or wall that you need to paint. Has it previously been painted, is it flaking, grimy, or a dark colour?

So let’s first look at a wall that has not been painted previously

All newly plastered wall should be sealed with a suitable primer/sealer. Priming a wall is vital to a lasting finish and a great-looking room, but there are also sound economic reasons for a good priming job. If you buy a good quality Top Coat, you don’t want to see stains or discoloration bleeding through because you didn’t take the time to prime. Also, primer is cheaper than paint, so if you do a coat of primer first, you save money.

What about previously painted walls?

Most importantly you want to ensure that the wall you are painting is clean, dust-free, with no flaking or damp. Wash the wall to remove any grease (we recommend sugar soap available from most hardware stores), fill any holes and cracks with one of our Skimming Products like PlasterFix. Give the wall a light sanding and remember to wipe with a damp cloth after sanding. Apply one of our Plaster Primers to the filled areas—priming will seal the filler and keep it in place. You might want to sand and re-prime the whole wall to avoid a patchy look.

5 Paint and Décor Tips for Summer

5 Paint and Décor Tips for Summer

1. Start at the front door

Make a great first impression and paint your front door a fun colour. In some cultures Red is a lucky colour and is very welcoming. Orange and yellow is associated with warmth and joy, making your house guest feeling at home from the minute they get there.

2. Keep Interior wall colours neutral and light

Neutral colours will give you the greatest décor flexibility which mean you can change your décor elements without having to repaint the whole room. Avoid jarring contrasts and too many bright colours inside your home. Your eyes will soon suffer from colour fatigue if every room is a different and bright colour. If you have two small rooms next to each other, painting them the same neutral colour also helps to make them feel larger.

3. Paint ceilings regularly

Sometimes a fresh coat of paint on your ceiling can make all the difference. If you paint the ceiling of a small room white it will make the room feel bigger. And while you’re at it replace weary looking light switch covers, you’ll be surprised at how much fresher the room will look.

4. Bathroom basics

Probably the smallest room in the house but the easiest to get a quick face-lift. Start by giving the bathroom wall and ceiling a fresh coat of paint. Then accessorize with new towels, linens and décor items that reflect the bright, refreshing colours of summer. Splash on a beautiful bathroom rug in a fun colour and shape.

5. Go natural

Green is a colour that is associated with summer and will give your home a fresh feel and look. Look for green décor pieces like chairs, cushions and vases. Make use of fresh fruit to brighten up a room, like a bowl full of yellow lemons. Paint, fabric, and paper offer opportunities to sneak rich hues into otherwise neutral spaces without being too costly.

How to pick the right colours for your home

How to pick the right colours for your home

Why does a room feel as it does? Well apart from the furnishings, we are influenced by colour so the chosen colours can as easily make us feel uneasy or welcomed in a room. This colour psychology is very subtle and we are not always aware of the effects that colour has on our moods. But with the wrong colours in use the room can be unsettling and who wants to inhabit a room that makes your nerves jangle?

Get the colour combinations right
A great way to match different hues of colour is to find images from nature and match those colours to a colour wheel.  Mother Nature is the ultimate genius at mixing tones and hues to achieve something spectacular.

Keep in mind the room’s function
All rooms are designed to serve a particular function and the wrong use of colour can make the room look out of place and confuse its function.  Now this doesn’t mean that bathrooms all have to be painted blue, but soothing or cool colours are better suited to bathrooms and bedrooms. Think about how you want to feel in the room and select colours that are in tune with those feelings. For example a dining room can be made to feel warm and social with earthy tones and a place of quiet contemplation would suit neutral tones.

Don’t overdo it
Just because the paint came in a big tin it doesn’t mean you have to use it all. Too much colour and especially colour ‘clashes’ will cause visual fatigue, where just the right combination would have been visually refreshing.  Remember that colours that are too bright can cause irritation and fatigue from being overstimulating (note for hyperactive kids – use colour wisely).

Use the painting formula
The rule-of-thumb is 60-30-10. This means that if you want to have a bit of a colour splash then 60% of the room should be one colour, 30% another and 10% the last colour. For example as the walls generally occupy the most visual area they get the 60% – the 30% will be the colour of the furnishings and the 10% will come from the rooms finishes such as artwork and linens.

Chalk-Style Paint – how to make your own at home

Chalk-Style Paint – how to make your own at home

This paint gives wood, especially furniture, a fantastic vintage look. This is not chalk-board paint, it is the paint that makes wood look like they are expensive vintage French pieces. Especially if you add a distressed effect to the finish.

What you will need

Paint (try Cotect’s Super Acrylic 303) – white is traditional or a soft shade of white. For a vintage country look or 50’s finish try pastel shades.
Plaster of Paris from your local hardware supplier
Warm Water
Sanding Paper
Acrylic Glaze
Acrylic Paint for that distressed look (we used a dark brown tone) – Optional

Quantities for mixing the Chalk-Style Paint

½ cup Plaster of Paris
½ cup Warm Water
1 ½ cups Acrylic Paint

Sand down your chosen project to get rid of rough edges, loose paint, dirt, etc.

Preparations for the distressed look

We selected two bedside tables, that had been painted iron grey for some reason, and a pine coffee table. In their current state we decided to use a dark brown paint to be ‘seen’ as the undercoat or ‘wood’ for the distressed effect.
Use the acrylic paint selected for the undercoat on the corners and edges of the piece of furniture. If there are ridges or any patterns, then paint on the most exposed or raised surfaces (the parts that are most likely to have received some wear and tear).

Steps to Mix the Chalk-Style Paint

Mix the warm water with the Plaster of Paris, until it has dissolved. Then add the paint and mix to combine.

Applying the Chalk-Style Paint

The first thing that you will find is that the paint is pretty thick and almost spreads onto the surface. The first coating is pretty streaky, chalky to the touch and will dry very quickly.
The second coat will smooth out the streaks and a few more coats on top will leave a smooth finish.

The Distressed Effect

Use some sandpaper and focus on the edges, corners and places that you have decided are most likely to have seen some wear and tear. The undercoat will start to come through and the piece will begin looking a bit worn and weathered. Stop when it is to enough for your liking.

Finishing Off

A light sanding will soften the feel of the finish and an Acrylic Glaze will seal the result from further wear and tear as well as water damage.

Get your home winter ready

Get your home winter ready

Now is a great time to do some winter proofing while the weather is still mild, despite the odd cold front. The last thing we need, is to have to brave the elements to fix a job that could have been tackled now in shorts and a t-shirt before the Rugby starts.

Take a tour of the property

Do this on a cold and rainy day to help identify trouble areas. Prevention now can avoid having to spend a fortune to solve a water damage problem mid-winter. Spend some time in the attic as inadequate insulation will guarantee an expensive heating bill.
Once you have your inspection list, head off to the hardware store to stock up on supplies. Handy items to have are sealants, waterproofing paint and plastering or skimming products. These will help cover any hole and create a nice watertight seal.

Things to look out for are

Clogged gutters – Clear to allow water to flow freely

Broken or missing tiles – Repair and replace to prevent leaks and drafts

Weathered wood – Use a wood varnish to create a waterproof coat

Cracked and exposed walls – use a skimming product like PlasterSkim range to seal and prevent water seepage and drafts

Cracks or gaps in doors and windows – get rid of icy drafts with weatherstriping

Cleaning up after painting a room

Cleaning up after painting a room

Once the painting job is done the urge is strong to quickly whip around and stash everything in the garage, to sort out tomorrow or maybe sometime soon. The problem with this approach is that upon returning to the paint, brushes and the rest of the equipment, you quickly discover that they all need to be replaced. The paint is dry, the brushes are stiff and the dust sheet is ‘glued’ together. Having to buy more paint and equipment can be a costly prospect.

Take your time to tidy up

Seal the paint tins and place all brushes in a container to be cleaned. Remove the brushes and tins from the room once you are sure that there will be no drops or spills.
If you used masking tape make sure that the paint is completely dry before it is removed. Peel it off gently and evenly, don’t try to rip it off quickly.
When it is time to fold up the dust sheet, first check your shoes for anything that will mark the floors. Fold the dust sheet in on itself trapping the dirt and paint in the inside. Take it outside to shake it off.

Removing paint marks and spills

To get paint drops off fabrics allow the paint to dry and this will avoid spreading. Tease the paint out of the fabric using lots of warm water. Use a blunt knife to remove larger drops of paint.
Stubborn paint marks in fabric can be removed with surgical alcohol from a chemist.  Thoroughly wet the area and paint stain with the alcohol and scrape the paint off with a blunt knife.
Paint drops on a carpet can be removed by cutting the drop and the tip of the carpet strand with a sharp knife. Otherwise dab and blot the spot with plenty of warm water. A blunt knife can also be used to gently ease the drop off the carpet strands.
Use a scraper to remove paint on windows and then clean and polish the glass.
A damp cloth can be used to remove paint from fixtures and fittings.

Cleaning and storing brushes

Cheap brushes are easy to replace but if your brush is better quality you may not want to have to buy a new one for the next job.
First remove excess paint with newspaper by working the brush backwards and forwards.
For water based paints rinse the brushes thoroughly with water.
Oil based paints can be cleaned off the brush in white spirit and then rinse the brush in water.

Once the brushes are clean and dry wrap the bristles in wax paper and store the brush in a clean dry place.

How to clean Paint rollers

How to clean Paint rollers
Getting water-based Paint off your roller

We’ve all done it, used a paint roller and then neglected to clean it immediately. So how do you get your Paint roller clean and usable again with old paint? Well the first but least obvious is to soak it in warm water with a little bit of dish washing liquid for at least half an hour. This should make it easy to get rid of most of the paint if not all. After you’ve soaked the paint roller, roll it on a towel or a inconspicuous wall till it comes clean.

Off course prevention is always better than cure so make sure you clean your Paint rollers and brushes immediately after use, even if it is a water-based Paint.



Season’s Greetings from Cotect Paints in Pretoria

Season’s Greetings from Cotect Paints in Pretoria

I Wish That I Could Paint Christmas

I wish that I could paint with love and Holiday cheer
So that Christmas and New Year lingers longer every year,
And once done painting I can put it on my shelf
And pull it down again each year to paint a fresh coat of love.
I wish that I could paint all my favorite carols with a brush,
And for all twelve months I’ll call them mine
I would hand out brushes and paint and give them to the world.
My wish for you this Christmas is a world painted just right.

With Love and Blessings, from everyone at Cotect