How Do I Paint Over Painted Walls? –

Cleaning Preparation

  1. While you may want to crack on and get painting, preparation is the key to a well finished paint job, so it’s well worth spending the extra time preparing the walls. Sanding the walls with a medium-grade sandpaper removes any cracked or peeling paint. Follow this with a good scrub down with sugar soap to remove dirt, grease and other stains from the wall and also ensures adequate adhesion for the new paint. Simply add to water and apply with a sponge, allow to sit for a few minutes then wipe away with clean water.

Supplies Needed to Paint Over Striped Walls

  • Paint color of your choice. I used Dutch Boy Platinum® Plus Interior Paint + Primer Existence (420-1DB) in Eggshell
  • Paint tray
  • A small paint roller
  • A large paint roller (if you’re painting your entire wall first)
  • Sandpaper or electric hand sander (preferred)
  • Putty knife and wall spackle if you have existing holes to fill
  • Sanding safety mask and protective eyewear

Video

7. Ombre

When you hear about ombre, it’s usually in reference to hair, but that isn’t the only place you can enjoy ombre. The idea is to blend multiple color combinations together for a seamless transition from one color to the next. To look the best, start with the darkest color on the bottom of the wall and get lighter as you reach the ceiling.

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There are two painting techniques you can use when painting your ombre wall. The first is to paint horizontal stripes over the bulk of the wall, leaving space between each color. Then working quickly, so the paint doesn’t dry, mix the colors together to create a new blended color. Then brush that color on the wall in the spaces.

The other option is to use your lightest color to paint a base coat over the entire wall. Then thin out the other colors to create a wash of color that gets gradually darker and more opaque the further down the wall you go.

1. Clean the walls

‘The first step in painting over wallpaper is to make sure the walls are completely clean,’ says Emily Perez, Head of Design at Kitchen Infinity. ‘It is necessary to ensure that there are no particles of dust or other dirty things. The priming process is hampered if the wall is not properly cleaned.’

To get the walls clean, use a cloth to remove any dust or grime. It should be barely damp as you don’t want to wet the walls.

If the walls are greasy, you could use a mild detergent solution but you may need to use a TSP solution instead. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions and make sure you wear safety gear. 

Allow walls to dry thoroughly. 

5. Apply the topcoat

When the primer is dry, you can apply the topcoat. As with the primer, use a small angled brush to cut in around doors and windows and along the baseboards. Then use a paint roller to apply the paint to the wall. 

Start in a corner and paint in horizontal bands from the top of the wall to the bottom.

Allow the paint to dry completely. Check the tin for approximate drying time but remember that weather conditions can affect how long it takes. 

Wall Primer

  1. The first option you have when attempting to paint over a dark color is to use a block-out primer. Normal paint does not have the same color-blocking properties as block-out primer and you could find your self spending a small fortune on paint in an attempt to cover over the existing color, however, do ensure the primer you purchase is suitable for covering over dark colors. Tinting the primer with the top coat you will be using also helps ensure the top coat covers the wall in a minimum amount of coats — your local decorator’s merchant will be able to do this for you.

4. Geometric

Creating geometric shapes across the entire wall is a popular accent wall idea. Most people choose at least two or three different colors for the shapes. However, you can choose as few or as many colours as you want.

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The simplest method for creating your shapes is to use masking tape. Place it on the wall to create shapes of varying sizes. They could all be triangles or geometric shapes with various amounts of sides.

For a cleaner look, eliminate the white lines the masking tape makes by painting your wall in phases. This will require you to mark off the shapes for the first color. Then you’ll tape off the next color’s sections when the first color is dry. The two-color shades will be against each other and eliminate the white borders.

What must you consider before painting wallpaper?

You have to assess if the state of your existing wallpaper can handle a paint job. Therefore…

  • If the wallpaper is extremely damaged with air bubbles and pronounced tears, then painting over it will not effectively hide the underlying issue.
  • If the wallpaper is heavily textured, then hiding the texture will not be easy.
  • A darker shade of wallpaper will need multiple coats of paint, especially if the new paint to cover the wallpaper is lighter in colour.
  • Do you have the necessary skilled labour and material to get the job done? Or is the option to peel and re-paint more accessible to you?
  • Are you looking for a long-term or a short-term solution? For a more permanent solution, it is better to peel the paper off. But if it’s for a short duration (in case of a rented home, for example), you can consider painting the wallpaper.

Paint the Wall

Once the primer has been given adequate time to dry, you can start painting. You want to use a roller brush for this as well. One of the mistakes many people make is to apply the paint too thinly by over rolling. You want an even layer, but you still want to use plenty of paint. Using too little will result in the original color showing through, even with the primer in place. This is why it’s important to use a good quality paint. Cheap paint tends to be thinner, and won’t give you good coverage.

When Not to Paint Over Wallpaper

Some wallpaper should not be painted over. That would include wallpaper that is peeling in multiple places, and certain types of wallpaper such as fabric-backed vinyl.

But the good news is that these types of wallpaper are fairly easy to remove. In fact, fortunately, the rule of thumb is that the bad candidates for painting over are easy to remove, and the wallpaper that would be difficult to remove is a good candidate for painting over.

So, before deciding to leave the wallpaper in place, try to remove it. Let your success or failure to be your guide. And also consider that while removing wallpaper can be a major hassle, removing wallpaper that has been painted over is an even more major hassle.

The bottom line is: Yes, you can paint over wallpaper with some exceptions and considerations. The secret’s in the preparation. Here’s how it’s done.

Additional Tips

Primer can also be used to cover remnants of old wallpaper. There are several types of priming products available. Be sure you take your time and compare the types available before you purchase one.

Purchase enough primer and paint to leave extra. It’s better to have too much than not enough. Since paint is mixed at the source, it can be difficult to get an exact match if you didn’t purchase enough the first time around.

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