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Professional quality decorating kit for DIY painters

Listed under Blog, brushes, Corona, Little Greene, Mirka, mypaintbrush.co.uk Posted Feb 15 2013

When recommending professional decorating kit for DIY users, my philosophy is quite simple: Good workmen rely on good tools, and DIY decorators actually need the best kit, best paint and best brushes, even moreso than a professional, probably!

There, I said it!

Keen DIY – if you aren’t the best painter, the last thing you need is a rubbish paint brush from B&Q splaying, shedding and dripping paint on you. If you have limited time evenings and weekends and holidays, the last thing you need is to be painting a wall 3 times with cheap poor quality paint, when 2 coats of premium paint will give better results easier and in two-thirds the time.

Pro quality kit for DIY users is a contrarian view!

These are some of the trade views you will hear outside of Traditional Painter circles.

“The trade like to feel they are getting a better deal than DIY… pros want trade paint instead of DIY paint… only professionals will pay the money for proper kit…”.

OK folks, at the risk of repeating the blooming obvious, if you knew how tight and conservative decorators are as a bunch, and how many “professionals” buy their kit from B&Q, or if you knew how refreshing it is to use DIY premium acrylic emulsion, you would understand what baloney those points of view are, and how condescending much of the thinking is to everyone involved.

But you don’t have to ask me if DIY have an interest in, and are prepared to splash out on professional kit. Read what Dave Aspden, DIY painter and 65 years of age has to say.

Review of Wooster FTP Chinex paint brush

I am 65 years of age and have owned three houses. My daughter has recently purchased her second house in Gloucester and has allowed me to decorate it for her and her family ( two grand daughters + husband). After a couple of weeks of toil I read your comments on the Wooster FTP brushes and decided to purchase a 2″ & 3″ sash. They are nothing short of bloody fantastic, their ability to hold paint plus the superb control that they allow the user to execute for cutting in is unbelievable.

Thank you for the recommendation. I just wish I had known about them earlier.

Regards Dave Aspden

So there you go B&Q, and decorating suppliers to the trade. That is one example of feedback I receive regularly from homeowners. Many, obviously not all, want the best, so they can avoid the usual DIY hell that they have been subjected to forever.

Picassos and Corona and Chinex filament brushes for DIY painters? Absolutely there is a demand and a need. A lady literally just emailed me saying she was at her wits end with the atrocious performance of her Harris brush in chalk paint and what could I suggest.

Acrylic emulsions, yes please! (The Little Greene acrylic emulsion paints are posh DIY over-priced paint, as far as many professionals are concerned – except the reality is, it is superior to almost every Trade vinyl emulsion being slapped on walls and ceilings as we speak.)

Take a look at this interview on the Julian Cassell DIY blog. When interviewing our TP colleague, Wayne de Wet, and looking through Julian’s site, you will see his main focus is trying to bring professional quality products to the attention of users in the DIY arena. Raising standards, not pimping cheap rubbish gets my vote.

Only professionals will pay good money for proper kit.

Pah! News just in from a DIY decorator on the coast.

I first learnt about Mirka’s CEROS Sanding System and how good it was on the site. Thanks for that. The 150mm has been/is sold as an attractive bundle (with vacuum house and 200 Abranet discs of 4 grades) giving quite a saving on the whole package. However this was not available in the 125 mm – until now. Stocks haven’t yet reached the re-sellers but Rest Express told me about it and went out of their way to put the equivalent package together, which was commendable. The system looks every bit as impressive as the reviews on the site and I look forward to putting it to good use.

Thought you/others might like to know.

A DIY owner of Mirka CEROS is unusual, and certainly puts the decs without dust extraction sanding to shame, but we have featured the Mirka Handy, the Abranet Starter Kit, from modest acorns, great Mirka oaks grow!

How can professional decorating suppliers reach the DIY user?

By collaborating with sites like Traditional Painter, the TP Trade Corner and properly embracing how the world uses the internet, there is no reason why trade suppliers cannot give DIY folks what they need at a fair price, when they want, delivered promptly to a destination of their choice. But it is easier said than done to deliver the best kit to DIY, mainly because of legacy thinking on the part of distributors.

I will address the legacy thinking thought at a later date, else this will end up a long rant.

What do you think. Is it easy for you (as a DIY or tradesman) to get hold of the products recommended by the professionals? Do you believe what you read on suppliers’ sites? Do you believe what you read on TP?

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5 comments to “Professional quality decorating kit for DIY painters”

  1. Sean Wilkinson

    Hi Andy and TP I tend to agree with you about getting hold ofthe best kit can be on occasion difficult even for professionals.Especially if like me you prefer not to just buy blind from an internet picture and description.I think sites like yours can help as recommendations from like minded professionals can benefit both the trade and diy’er.
    Kind regards

  2. Avatar photo Andy Crichton

    Thanks for your feedback Sean. I suppose it is a case of being at a point in time where it has been getting worse before it gets better – ie with the internet taking a hold, there is better access to more info about good quality kit than ever before, but on the downside, when you try buy something “odd” from the usual suspects in the merchants and main stores, you get to see just how restrictive many merchants have been and continue to be. Also, the vast majority of those suppliers that have set up online still haven’t really cracked the biggest nut – credibility – as you say, it takes a lot to spend out on the basis of just a photo and a bit of sales spiel from HQ.

    But as more folks cotton on to what is out there, a lot of suppliers will have to modify and up their game or lose out to the rare birds who get it. I’m not holding my breath for a universal change in the landscape, because if you look up conservative industry in the dictionary you know what appears number one, but there are good signs appearing in patches.

  3. Dennis Keogh

    Firstly, keep up the good work spreading quality information around the world, love your site, it helps me. I don’t find it easy at all getting hold of recommended products, I would say 90% of my tools and consumables come from the internet. I do read suppliers web sites but would also turn to sites such as TP. As we speak my Mirka Ceros [ordered off the internet, I did look locally] is on its way, I have always used an orbital sander coupled up to my Festool extractor but its time to move up a step or two.

  4. Avatar photo Andy Crichton

    cheers for the update Dennis. Out of interest, can I ask why you bought the CEROS online and not from a store?

  5. Charles Budd

    A great post. I was in Brewers today, and although they’re getting better, they still promote brands that are not as good as others. I saw several retail customers going away with paints, brushes and rollers that will do the job, but no way near as quickly or as well as Wooster stuff, for example. The message will spread, but it will take time, and gentle pressure from those in the know.
    Thanks again for such useful posts.

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