A successful painting project must start with preparation, beginning with your floor and equipment. Lay out canvas rather than plastic wherever you plan to paint, and cover any furniture you cannot move from the room with a layer of plastic or canvas as well to ensure you never find any surprise spots on your sofa later. Make sure you have all of your equipment from the start, such as brushes, rollers, the actual paint, primer, painter’s tape, and anything else you might need to start and finish your project.
Once you are set up and wearing clothing you do not mind getting covered in paint, start by preparing the surface you plan to paint. First, wash the surface to ensure no dust particles or any other debris are present; you can use water and a mild detergent to do this, such as a gentle dish soap. You can then sand the surface with a medium grit paper just enough to give the primer something on which to catch, avoiding sanding so far that you actually remove a layer of paint already present. If necessary, ensure that all holes, cracks, dents, and surface imperfections are corrected using spackle and other appropriate materials, for no amount of high-quality paint can hide these problems.
Priming walls and ceilings is absolutely necessary if you plan to cover a dark color or are covering new drywall. Many professional painters will tint their primer slightly by mixing in a very small amount of the topcoat paint, thereby improving the ability of the primer to completely hide the primed surface. Although you can now buy paint with primer included, it is always more effective to buy a dedicated primer and then utilize a very small amount of topcoat paint to tint it toward the color you want. You should once again sand the surface, this time with a fine grit paper to increase grip.
It is always recommended that you roll on at least two layers of your topcoat paint to ensure you receive the absolute best quality in color and appearance. This will also reduce the chances that anything underneath the paint, such as an older, much darker color, will be completely covered up without bleeding through. Before applying a single drop of topcoat paint, make sure you give your primer time to completely dry, and then let every layer of topcoat paint dry before applying another for an even, beautiful finish.