Thursday, June 21, 2012

the perfect stripes!

i know i am so behind on posting a master bedroom tour, but truth is, we are far from finished and right now it looks even more crazy with our summer-mismatched bedding and stella's "nap time" crib in there, so bear with me and i will get it to you soon!

a lot of you followed along on instagram this winter as i added some yummy stripes to our off white walls, in bher's "wheat bread". it was a stressful, tricky process, but i seriously couldn't be more happy with the results. totally worth the six rolls of frog tape i went through and the re-measuring, removing, and re-taping i did to get the look i wanted. a little nugget of truth: if you attempt stripes, they are not easy, prepare to cuss and be frustrated a lot.

all that being said, a lot of you have asked what my trick is to get seamless stripes with no bleed at all, AT ALL!! well, it is actually super easy but hard to explain at the same time so i am going to try and use visuals that i created to show you. this technique also works really well for cutting in ceilings or if you are not painting a whole room and are stopping the corner. i also used this same method when i whipped out some flawless chevrons above our fireplace. again, no bleeding at all!

a couple of important tips before we get started: use frog tape, i have had nothing but great luck with it and in the past blue painters tape just hasn't stood up. so f-r-o-g t-a-p-e, equals very important. second, pay attention to your measuring and where you are taping, of course you (usually) want your lines to be equal size so it will depend on taping on the inside or outside of your marks to accommodate the width/size f your tape...does that make sense? i got messed up here when i was doing my chevrons, but luckily in this case it looked all right.

step one: paint your base, usually lighter will work best, color on all the walls you will be working with. make sure and let it dry/cure for, let's say, forty-eight hours just to be safe. it will really suck if you go to tape and it totally destroys this step! side note: again, you can use the method i am about to show you for cutting in your ceiling as well, so read ahead and you know what i am talking about!


step two: measure, mark lines, and tape! again pay attention to the width of your tape, the measurement, and placement to ensure equal sized lines. on the stripes i did in the new darker color, i put my tape on the outside of my markings. side not: a wall mounting laser level really came in handy on this project. in the end i still had to do a lot of measuring down from the ceiling due to wonky unlevel walls, but it was a great starting tool. that is another thing to pay attention to also, are your walls even height? it might affect how you want to measure out each line.


step three: cut in your lines with your base paint! this is the secret technique! using the same color you just laid down as your base coat (i used black to show where i painted), cut in your new darker stripes. this will fill in any bubbles or cracks in the paint with the color that is on the wall, sealing the tape down, so that when you add the darker/different color it will stick to the sleek outside lines of your tape only. does that make sense?


step four: paint your new stripes! now it is time to add your new stripe color, pretty self explanatory, and you can apply pretty quickly after you have cut in your tape lines. the black still showing just represents where your base color might be in the tape.

step five, your done!: another very important step is to remove the tape as soon as you have the last coat on the wall. leaving it too long can lead to peeling off some of your new paint job, leaving a unsightly line.

hopefully this tutorial helps you on your next wall + stripes project! it really is a lifesaver and i constantly get compliments from people who notice how clean my lines are on my ceilings or where i have done projects like this that involve more obvious paint lines. looking on pinterest, i have also noticed people mention tutorials where you lay down a line of caulking to create a seamless seal for the tape - this seems like too many extra steps and tools for me, i like that with this you just need the paint you were already working with!

i just saw in my friends son's bedroom the other day that they did stripes where it was the same color throughout, but glossy on flat, it was so amazing looking in such a dramatic but subtle way. the possibilities are endless on what you can do with stripes to jazz up a space!

i would love to hear if you have tried this method or if you do! and, if my tutorial makes no sense at all...you can tell me that too!

12 comments:

melissa rohr said...

I'm about to paint stripes in the nursery...the only room with flat walls.  All of our other walls are bumpy and I'm too worried the frog tape will still bleed. Thanks for the tutorial!

melissa rohr said...

Great tutorial!  I agree, painting the base color to seal your tape line is the only way to go.  It is worth every second of extra time it takes.  I will never do a painting project any other way again.

melissa rohr said...

in that case you might want to check out the caulking tutorials i was talking about! look on pinterest! that might seal it a little better on a rough patch. maybe also try a really small area with the frog tape and see what happens - when you edge the tape with the base color you can totally see it seal the tape, so just watch for that and see what happens! post pictures when your done!!

melissa rohr said...

This is a great how-to! I agree stripes are tricky, we have vertical ones in our laundry room and they took FOREVER!

melissa rohr said...

This is exactly what i want to do with my nursery! The cutting in with base color is an amazing idea. So are you very careful to make sure you don't get any of the base paint ON the tape? Or can you overlap it? I'm just worried about letting the base dry, painting the stripes, and then having some of the base paint come up when I'm peeling the tape off. Know what I mean? Also, did you do the stripes the whole way around the room? I'm debating whether to do the whole room or just an accent wall. I didn't know if having them all the way around the room would make things kind of dizzy/overwhelming. If it doesn't, I would like to do the whole room. Thanks!

melissa rohr said...

we did almost the whole room! there is a like seven diff walls total in the room, weird short ones to accommodate the b-room, bedroom, and closet doors. i was overwhelmed so i did the 3 biggest connecting walls and then a little wall where it wrapped around a corner. (i'll try and add some more pics of what i mean!) no no, go ahead and paint over the tape! as long as your base paint has had plenty of time to dry, i have never had a problem with any paint coming back up! you have to paint onto the tape a little to really know you got in all the cracks and whatnot - you'll see what i mean, but as you cut in you can actually see where the paint is making a seal with the tape!

melissa rohr said...

haha, i will never paint stripes again! even though i love them! you know what someone told me though that i never thought about? it is super hard if you ever want to paint the room back a solid color :/ you will always see the edge of the stripes! i figure though you could just very lightly hit it with a sanding block or something to help maybe. 

melissa rohr said...

i know! my friend taught it to me right before we moved in here! i am not sure how i loved without it before! it is so funny when people notice how crisp the lines on the ceilings are - i would never think about it haha!

melissa rohr said...

This is a great how-to! I agree stripes are tricky, we have vertical ones in our laundry room and they took FOREVER!

melissa rohr said...

in that case you might want to check out the caulking tutorials i was talking about! look on pinterest! that might seal it a little better on a rough patch. maybe also try a really small area with the frog tape and see what happens - when you edge the tape with the base color you can totally see it seal the tape, so just watch for that and see what happens! post pictures when your done!!

melissa rohr said...

Great tutorial!  I agree, painting the base color to seal your tape line is the only way to go.  It is worth every second of extra time it takes.  I will never do a painting project any other way again.

melissa rohr said...

I'm about to paint stripes in the nursery...the only room with flat walls.  All of our other walls are bumpy and I'm too worried the frog tape will still bleed. Thanks for the tutorial!