Getting ready for prime time

I found out last week that yes, the taping job was officially done, so this weekend both my parents and I were there and cleaned the living daylights out of the place. Wiping down the walls and ceilings, vacuuming the floors multiple times, scraping gunk and spilled compound off of them, and wiping them down with wet rags. And many, many changes of water. A quarter of a bedroom made the dirty water look like chocolate milk. And I got fed up with the cardboard sheets on the floors and took them up. Wahoo! I don’t need them anymore! And my inlaid floors are alive and well underneath!


And remember that lovely maroony purply color that my front bedroom floor is painted? No? Well now you do.


And the back bedroom is looking downright civilized. Mind you, my mom gets cold pretty easily, but 2 of these portable radiators on low (600 watts) make the house comfortable for her. I’m kinda excited for 2-figure heating bills.


So after a day of furious cleaning, my dad and I started to OCD the walls. There were 4 spots the tapers missed that really had to be done. Most of the spots we fixed were imperceptibly tiny and shallow. Two were behind radiators where they’ll never be seen again. Then there were a few gouges over the tub because my box spring was in the way, a couple big spots that they should have gotten, some of the chipped plaster where walls meet exposed brick, and where the railing meets the wall in the upstairs hall. It’s going to take several days of doing small amounts of work to fix all these, but we’re off to a a good start.


The grey spots on that white wall are wet compound my dad put on.

So… my dad bought an electric roller and the plan for this weekend is to prime all of it! The whole house! Then the walls will be strong enough that I won’t risk damaging them by carrying the shop vac through that tiny hallway.

And with primer scheduled, it’s time to think about paint! All of it! So the first thing to think of is practical constraints. I want to spray my radiators… along with a bunch of furniture that belongs my parents and other people I owe favors to. They’re all getting the same paint because there’s no way that I’m going to clean the sprayer to do multiple colors. So if you want anything painted, bring it over. I’ll make it any color you want as long as it’s white.

This also means that I’m committing to the exact same semi-gloss white paint in every room of the house. I’ll make the radiators the trim color. It doesn’t have to be a bright, harsh white, but it has to be white enough to look good with the white tiles on my bathroom floor. The other problem is that I want it to really look good, and unfortunately, the good paints have been banned for decades. So if anyone has experience with the waterborne alkyd paints or the alkyd/latex hybrids, please let me know!

The ceilings will all be the same flat white so that again I can use a power roller. Except the kitchen and bathroom. They need to be scrubbable, and we’ll talk about colors room by room next time. For now, let’s talk about what kind of paint will spray well on my radiators, hold up well on my trim, and comply with environmental laws – I’m not particularly interested in breaking them. And we can talk about exactly what shade of white I want.


8 thoughts on “Getting ready for prime time

  1. Casey

    I’ve been using oil based porch&floor enamel for trim and furniture, as well as kitchen and bath walls and ceilings. It’s bulletproof, and looks just like indestructible old (lead) enamel. Crazy fumes and a bear to clean up but I love the linseed oil smell when it cures.


  2. meganmoss82

    Everything looks fantastic, but you do not want to use any sort of water-based or latex paint on the radiators. Every time they heat up the paint will soften slightly, leading to scrapes, peeling, and perhaps worse of all, dust embedded in the paint. Use rustoleum spray paint, 3-6 cans a radiator.


  3. Mary Elizabeth

    I agree with Megan on the radiator paint. But I think that’s what you had planned to use, Rustoleum. As for the other paints for the walls, I like Benjamin Moore’s Regal Classic Interior, with is a vinyl/acrylic/latex. It comes in any color they sell, it is easy to put on with rollers and brushes, it cleans up with water, and it has a durable, washable finish when dry. My favorite finish is Pearl.


  4. Jo

    When the priming is finished is when the FUN begins. You’re so lucky to have Mom and Dad in on the project. We’ll want and update on the electric roller. Jo @ Let’s Face the Music



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