Attention to detail masking up furniture
I think that paying attention to masking up furniture is a big step towards attaining a good finish. Furniture is probably more closely scrutinised than even a hand-painted kitchen. This for painters looking how to please the most discerning customers.
The missing attention to detail when masking up this piece of furniture
The high-end painter who last decorated this unit did a beautiful job overall, but to my eye, he spoilt the work with lots of little sloppinesses. What’s up with the paint on the inside of the cupboards and all over the hinges?
My approach to a great finish is simple. I prefer to “lose” time at the start of a job, cleaning off old paint. Then I use masking tape, plastic and paper to protect precious items. Once I have protected everything then I can paint freely (and fast) and make up on the lost preparation time. When I take off the masking tape, there is a crisp straight line and there is no mess to clear off. Thinking ahead, the next time it is repainted, there will be very little preparation needed.
Masking up interiors
There is more to beautifying walls than simply painting, filling and sanding. The first, and in my opinion, most important job, is to mask up. Protect everything that is not being painted, simple. Paint doesn’t always go where it is supposed to.
I prefer not to copy 99% of tradesmen when it comes to masking up. How often do you see cotton dust sheets draped over furniture, sheets on the floor? Painters then spend the whole time treading very carefully, hoping not to tread paint spatters into carpets. I easily avoid this underlying worry with a different approach to masking and sheeting a room.
Masking the good way
I prefer to mask up with paper and plastic. I work on the assumption that if a gallon of oil paint exploded in the middle of the room, nothing will spoil. When I have protected everything, I can paint and sand to my heart’s content. So far no damage, and so far no one has complained that I am too tidy!
I have done all the timings and experiments with time and motion, and I am confident that this approach has far more advantages than disadvantages.
- It is easier to sweep up paper than collect dust sheets, shake them sweep up the dust and relay the sheets.
- When all the paint has dried, I can remove the tape and paper and I know nothing will be spoilt.
- At the end of a job, I don’t have to wash dust sheets and damage my washing machine…
If you have any observations, I would love to read them.
For many years I have had the privilege of working some of the best furniture painters in the business. When it comes to attention to detail these craftsmen and -women are exemplary.
Barrie Thompson in Essex.
And Lee Simone in Yorkshire
It’s all in the detail with Traditional Painter members.
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