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Painting It: Choosing the Right Paint Brush

Many people believe any brush will do. On the contrary!  You will find that, in order to paint effectively, there is a specific paint brush for every need.

 

Generally, there are two types of brushes: the nylon/polyester, which is used to apply waterbourne paints and coatings, example: latex, and the China Bristle which is used to apply petroleum based solvent type materials, example: enamel.

 

 Some examples of brushes used with specific materials

 

  1. Oil based Varnish and Polyurethane: 3 inch white China bristle (preferred).

 

  1. Water based latex, acrylic clear coat: 1-4 inch nylon/polyester, 2½-3 inch (preferred).

 

  1. Oil/alkyd/enamel paints/coatings: 1½-3 inch black China bristle; 2½-3 inch (preferred).

 

  1. Epoxy/Urethane paints: 2½-3 inch black China bristle.

 

  1. Shellac-alcohol based coatings: 2½- 3 inch black China bristle.

 

  1. Ammonia based coatings: 2½ -3 inch nylon/polyester.

 

*Selecting a paint brush based on the material being used is half of the equation. One must also consider the surface or object you intend to paint.

 

Typically, you can base your selection on the size or detail of the project. Painting walls or ceilings requires a different brush than painting window trim.

 

A few examples which illustrate that fact

 

  1. Painting a Wood Door. Use a 1½-2 inch angular brush. These brushes are designed for trimming around hinges, edges and recessed panels.

 

  1. Painting a Wall or Ceiling. Use a 2½-3 inch angular brush or a 3-4 inch square brush. Use these brushes for large open flat areas with little or no detailed trim work.

 

  1. Painting an Ornamental surface. Use a 1-2½ inch angular brush, or selection of artist brushes depending on intricacy of surface or object.

 

  1. Painting Furniture. Use a 2 inch square brush with a narrow ferrule. Select a brush with fine bristles to reduce brush strokes.

 

Helpful Hints to Remember

 

  1. Always use the recommended solvent to clean your brushes. If you do not, your brush may be a one-time use only tool.

 

  1. Store brushes in a hanging container. Or lay flat with bristles wrapped in newspaper, or in the original brush protector.

 

  1. Load China bristle brushes with linseed oil to keep softened.

 

  1. Load nylon/polyester brushes with soap to keep soft.

 

  1. When cleaning paint brush bristles, use a fine wire brush to remove paint.

 

  1. Buy good quality brushes. Consider them an investment, especially if you’re a painter by trade. I recommend Purdy, Wooster and Sherwin-Williams brands.

 

A Painter’s paint brush is an essential, basic tool, like a wrench used by a mechanic. To continue to use it: keep it clean and use it as recommended.

 

One of the best paint brushes I ever used was a brush owned by my father. The brush was thirty-five years old. And, it was made by Purdy.

 

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SPECIAL THANKS: To all of the trade painters, who have been emailing or calling with requests and suggestions for “Painting with Bob.”

 

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Copyright 2015. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.

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Painting Projects: “Let’s Do It” and “Let-Me-Think-About-It”

Every project features certain elements and parameters that must be considered before it’s taken on by the painter/decorator.

 

Every project requires certain resources for the painter/decorator to achieve satisfactory results.

 
Ten “LET’S DO IT” Projects.*

 

* Projects classified by crew size needed to do job.

* Projects require definite deadline; doing projects around other things unfeasible.

 

“Let’s Do It” Projects – Crew size: 1  (Basic stuff, piece of cake!)

1. Refinish picture frames.

2. Caulk cracks in ceiling edges, and wall corners.

3. Paint an accent wall.

4. Apply wallpaper border.

5. Wood-grain a metal door.

6. Do a simple faux-finish to wall, using sponging or rag rolling technique.

7. Paint ceiling in large office.

8. Paint metal door frames.

9. Hang wallpaper in room, or office.

10. Refinish pieces of wood furniture.

 

“Let’s Do It” Projects – Crew size: 2 or 3 minimum (Need to do project safely!)

1. Paint exterior of home or office building.

2. Install commercial wallcovering in offices.

3. Paint concrete floors vs. floor.

4. Refinish large number of wood doors.

5. Paint interior walls of office/business complex.

6. Repaint acoustic ceilings.

7. Apply texture to interior walls of housing development, or business complex.

8. Apply faux finish to walls in 8 or more large offices, or multi-housing complex.

9. Hand-paint large wall mural.

10. Repaint residential development exteriors.

 

I’ve worked on each of the above projects, start-to-finish, on my own, also as part of a crew. Upon completion, every project received an “excellent” rating.

 

RELATED TIPS:

  1. Always begin a project with all of the necessary products, supplies, tools, and paint equipment readily available to you.
  2. Avoid need to leave the job multiple times. It can distract you, and slow production.

 

 

Five “LET ME THINK ABOUT IT” Projects.*  

 

* Projects classified by crew size needed to do job.

* Most projects require definite deadline; doing project around other things unfeasible.

 

“Let Me Think About It” ProjectsCrew size: 1 (Take a closer look, some red flags! )

 

1. Refinish antique furniture in faux finish application.

2. Apply stencil design to bathroom.

3. Clean and paint driveway surface.

4. Apply faux plaster finish to interior  walls in very large, older residence.

5. Texture ceilings, presently with smooth surface.

 

“Let Me Think About It” Projects – Crew size: 2 or 3 minimum (Check out closely. Might not be a good idea to take on!)

1. Paint exterior of multi-floor building.

2. Remove ceiling tiles, and paint ceiling metal grid.

3. Repaint moldings and doors in multi-housing complex.

4. Repair, prep and repaint all walls in residential or business complex.

5. Paint accent colors on walls throughout entire office or business complex.

 

 

I’ve worked on each of the above projects, start-to-finish – on my own, or as part of a small crew. Every project, upon completion, received an “excellent” rating. So, it can be done. Still, especially if you have a choice. . .

 

Food for thought: If any painter/decorator’s “Let-Me-Think-About-It” list is longer than five, he or she might want to consider specializing – whether he or she works for someone else, by the project, or for himself or herself. Or, re-think this career choice.

 

A painter and decorator needs to manage and operate his or her “project career” (my term), according to a basic set of rules and limits. One that works for that person. That includes working on projects with elements, parameters and requirements that coincide with the painter/decorator’s rules and limits. And, his or her innate value system.

 

This modus operandi, especially in the long-term, benefits everyone concerned. The guest/ visitor/ customer. The client/property owner/stakeholder. The employer or contractor. The staff or employee group. The paint team/crew. The painter and decorator.

Painting Them: Restaurants, Clubs and Bars in Hotels and Resorts.

Places where people go to relax or have fun vary in theme, design, and atmosphere. They can be uplifting, heart pounding, eclectic, luxurious, earthy and natural, or any other unique effect.

 

Each atmosphere has a style all its own. And, hopefully, it is appropriate to the type of public the dining and social amenities want to attract.

 

The design and painting of a “restaurant “can include the following features, depending on the overall theme of the area:

 

1. Soft earth tones blended with matte black accents.

 

2. Wood veneer “paneling” and wainscoting with mitered moldings.

 

3. Ceilings painted in off white or pastel beiges.

 

4. Faux finishing applications such as gold leafing and marbleizing.

 

5. Textured wall finishes such as Venetian plaster.

 

When designing and painting a “club,” here are some suggestions:

 

1. In a “bright” club setting, bright and flashing lights mean brilliant flashy colors.

 

2. In a “bohemian” setting, subtle and complementary earth tone finishes set the mood.

 

3. In an “electrifying” setting, a combination of colors sets the pace – eg. reds with purples, and blues with silvers.

 

4. Use “high intensity graphics” with simulated chrome appearance, possibly neons and metallic transparent finishes.

 

The design and painting of a “bar” can incorporate the following options:
1. A bar, which is “relaxing” and conducive to quiet conversation, has a subdued atmosphere. Using darker earth tone colors with moderately dark stain paneled woods is optimal.

 

2. In a bar full of electricity and a fast beat, use bright and reflective colors.

 

3. For ceiling styles, consider a “traditionally finished metal pan ceiling.” Nostalgia can provide a very relaxing and comfortable environment.

 

4. In any case, the bar itself needs to be one “focal point.” Design it with wood paneling, stained in a moderately dark color and finished in a matte sheen of durable vanish or polyurethane. Any molding can be highlighted by finishing with a light oak stain, enhanced by a gloss clear finish.

 

Atmosphere is everything. Patrons will enjoy their meals or drinks much more where they feel at home, almost as much if they were there.

 

Design and paint, that are selected, blended and served right, always go well with food and drink!

 

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Enjoy a little bit of heaven at your favorite spot. Thanks for visiting “Painting with Bob.”

 

 

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