Category Archives: How-tos

Painting Ideas for your Workplace

When a visitor walks into a home, they immediately get a feel for the owner’s personality, style and what they value. Likewise, when a client walks into a business they glean that same information by the decor, color palette and accent features. Workspaces can tell clients quite a bit about the brand and company by looking at things like whether the furnishings are contemporary or traditional, whether the color scheme conveys a positive image of the business and, overall, whether the environment is warm and cozy or more like the fluorescent lit commercial spaces of the past several decades. In this modern day and age, industry leading companies are embracing the fact that color, furnishings and amenities can greatly improve your commercial space environment both for clients and employees.

 

A well branded space is an effective way to consistently communicate valuable information about a company to existing and potential customers. When you brand your space, it helps to educate visitors about your products and services in an engaging environment, without being obtrusive. Here are some suggestions to have your walls and workplace environment start telling the story about your company and your brand:

 

  • Choose Brand Colors – When painting your office choose colors that not only represent your service and product but also reflect your specific brand. If the hues of your brand are not conducive with painting an entire office, then choose an accent wall or accent items.
  • Create a Timeline Wall or Wall of Values – Use your branded color palette as a background for a wall that displays the history of your company with images, awards, or a timeline of the company’s history. This personal touch will allow clients to see your values. Some companies use words such as integrity, innovation and/or teamwork as decoration to showcase the brand image.
  • Create a Space that Reflects your Brand Values – If you want to portray your workplace as warm and inviting then arrange an entry area, waiting room and employee workspace that represents that. Choose comfy chairs, an open work area instead of cubicles, or possibly a community area that encourages teamwork or communication.
  • Create a Mural or Design – Striking images or designs in a commercial environment not only creates a stimulating environment, but it helps improve morale, company identity and branding. It has the power to enhance a person’s experience with your brand.

 

Trends: Chalk Painted Furniture

Have you ever found a great piece of furniture that needed a little TLC? One of the hot products on the market right now for DIY projects is chalk paint, which has gone from a niche specialty product to one that’s rapidly becoming more and more available at local paint and home improvement stores. Chalk paint is different from the chalkboard paint we’ve seen on the market for the past few years. It’s meant for furniture or cabinetry, and is meant to cut down on the time and effort necessary to complete a restoration project, while at the same time making the end product look like a professional paint job.

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With chalk paint, it’s easy to create a bedroom or dining room set out of mismatched pieces that end up looking like they have always belonged together, simply by using the same shade of paint and using the same technique.

If you’re particularly adventurous and handy, there are even recipes for making your own chalk paint with plaster of paris or latex paint!

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One of the advantages of chalk paint is that there is no sanding, stripping, or other physically intensive labor involved in the process – the chalk paint sticks well, even to enameled surfaces. A small amount of paint goes a long way, and it rolls on thick, but smooth.

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Here’s how to use chalk paint.

First, the piece of furniture should be cleaned thoroughly with a TSP-like product, or basic soap and water, and completely dried. Make sure you have enough space to paint without accidentally marking nearby surfaces, and place a drop cloth under the piece.

Remove all the drawers and hardware. Read the directions on the chalk paint – most paints need to be mixed very well, and some need to be placed upside-down for a half hour to an hour to make sure the heavier particles don’t stay at the bottom of the paint jar.

A good quality paintbrush will make your job easier and lead to a better looking finished product. Coat the piece evenly, but make sure the coat is thin enough to not drip.

It may take two or three coats to finish your piece. Let dry for at least one hour between coats, longer if your specific brand’s directions indicate. Make sure you let the final coat dry before re-installing hardware and drawers.

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Chalk paint is also great for giving furniture an aged, distressed, shabby chic look. Simply sand before adding a top coat.

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While chalk paint can be left on its own for a muted, matte finish, there is also the option to finish the piece with a specialized wax product to make it shine. There is clear wax, dark and light waxes, each with their own look, as well as aging dust that can be applied over the wax. Also, a clear polyurethane top coat can be used to permanently seal the piece if an annual re-waxing is not something you’re excited about.

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If chalk paint sounds like a dream come true, it sure can be! More information on chalk paint and accessories can be found at your local paint or hardware store.

 

 

How To: Painting an Accent Wall

Repainting can feel drastic, especially when you’re not looking for a complete change but rather a point of interest or a shift in mood. For that, we recommend painting an accent wall. An accent wall is just a wall painted in a different color (or painted in a different pattern) than the rest of the room. It’s an easy way to add more dimensionality to a room or a space.

painting an accent wall - interior painting company MA

The nice thing about painting an accent wall is that it’s an easy DIY painting project for the layperson who has never done any interior painting before. That said, as with any painting project, it pays to think and plan ahead when you’re painting an accent wall. Here’s how to get started after you’ve chosen your wall:

1. Choose a color palette. You want to be careful here because presumably you’re not starting from scratch – unless your walls are white you need to take your other wall colors into consideration when choosing an accent wall color. You can be as subtle or as bold as you like when making your choice, but a good rule of thumb is to choose a color on the opposite side of the color wheel if you’re want a dramatic accent wall or choose a color a few shades darker than your other walls for a more subdued look.

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2. Decide whether your wall will have a simple eggshell finish or maybe even a pattern. A striped accent wall is a trendy and fun choice, and other options include textured paint, a stenciled wall or a repeating pattern made with sponges or specialty paintbrushes. One word of caution, however. While the options for finishes and patterns are near endless, first-timers should consider starting with regular interior paint. Choosing accent wall colors can be hard enough!

how to paint an accent wall - interior painting company MA

3. Prep your room. One night thing about painting an accent wall is that you don’t have to clear a whole room or cover every last piece of furniture. Simply move everything against and near that wall toward the far wall, cover the floor a few feet out from the wall, and tape the wall and ceiling. Don’t forget to take outlet cover plates off and tape off the outlets themselves. A little protection goes a long way toward a perfect paint job!

4. Prime, prime, prime! This step is especially important if you’re painting a light color over a dark one or using very saturated primary colors – which tend to have less coverage per coat. In the latter case, opting for a tinted primer can save you from having to apply fourth, fifth, and sixth coats to get adequate coverage.

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5. Finally, begin painting. You should begin by painting around the edges of your wall, feathering outward. Don’t overdo it with paint because you want to avoid drips and paint actually dries and cures better when it is applied in multiple thin coats. Next, use a roller to fill in the wall itself, making sure to overlap your strokes with the paint you applied around the edges. Then stop, fix yourself an icy cold beverage and give the whole first coat a chance to dry before applying a second – and possibly even a third – coat.

Every Massachusetts exterior painting and interior painting project is different, and unlike other MA interior painting companies, we will always treat your house, building, or surface as one-of-a-kind. Need help choosing paint colors? We can do that with an expert eye. Call us for a free estimate at 978-546-6843.

Home Improvements to Tackle This Winter

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Just because the temperatures plunge doesn’t mean you need to put home improvement on hold. Wintertime is the best time to turn your attention to your home’s interior. The nice thing about winter home improvements is that they can be completed at a more relaxed pace because you don’t have to worry about weather causing a work stoppage. This winter, why not put these low-pressure improvement projects on your to-do list?

Refinish those doors. Smudges, scratches, dings, and dents on bedroom and other doors can make your whole house look tired. You will be shocked at how sanding and staining or painting wood doors can freshen up hallways and other spaces.

Tackle tiny to-dos. What minor repairs have you been putting off? A leaky faucet that needs fixing? Squeaky or sticky doors? A rough patch of floor? You’ll feel so great after doing just one repair that you may get through your entire list!

Add some color. Interior paint is amazingly transformative considering how little a few gallons can cost. If you don’t feel like disrupting an entire room for a splash of color, why not try an accent wall, a stripe, or even painting a piece of furniture? Bright colors are the perfect antidote to winter doldrums.

Shed some light on things. Dark rooms in winter can ruin your mood since the sun is hardly up before it starts going back down. Add a few lights in the form of track lighting, which you can aim so the darkest corners of your home become the most cheerful.

Update your backsplash. As improvements go, it sounds a bit boring, but this is a budget-friendly way to give your kitchen a facelift. Paint it, add decorative tiles, or hang a mirror. Just try something new.

Get organized. If this wasn’t on your list of 2015 New Year’s Resolutions you can still add it! Make yourself a nice cup of hot chocolate and pick a closet to clean out. Then another. It can sound like a massive job – one you don’t want to even think about – but it’s easy when you do one thing at a time.

Little by little, get rid of all the old things, expired food, clothes you don’t wear, art you don’t love, and see if you don’t feel lighter and more energetic for having done so.

Spring will be here before you know it and you’ll be happier in your house for having had a productive winter!

This story originally appeared in our monthly newsletter, Prime Time by Jerry Enos Painting company in Massachusettsto subscribe, contact us!

When to Paint (and When NOT to Paint)

There are lots of things that can inspire you to paint. Maybe you’re getting a little bored with your current interior or exterior décor. Or could be that your siding and your walls are starting to show their age. Whatever your reasons for painting your home, there’s no right or wrong colors to use or styles to try! Have fun with it, and you’ll love the results.

It is worth mentioning, however, that there are definitely right and wrong TIMES to paint – especially where weather is concerned.

exterior painting company MA

Here are some must-know dos and don’ts for painting interiors and exteriors:

DO read paint can labels. Paint manufacturers include temperature guidelines on their product and the recommended min and max temps have been set for a reason. Stay within the suggested range to get the best and longest lasting results.

DON’T rush interior paint drying times when it’s humid or wet outside. Always make sure that the coat you applied last is totally dry before starting your next coat.

DO open a window when you’re painting inside, even if it’s cold outside. Besides the fact that even the scent of low-VOC or no-VOC paints can make some people feel lightheaded, paint will dry much more slowly in a totally enclosed room.

DON’T even thinking about painting exteriors when it’s raining. Even if there is a slight chance of rain in the forecast, reschedule. A downpour will not only ruin your paint job, but may also splatter wet paint onto other surfaces.

DO start on the side of your house that’s in the shade and then follow the path of the sun so you’re applying paint in the shade as much as possible. Too much direct sunlight can cause lap marks and blistering.

DON’T paint when it’s too hot – if you’re using an airless paint sprayer, your paint can actually dry in the air before it ever hits the wall!

DO wait until the relative humidity is 40% to 70% to paint to get the best results. If humidity is high it can cause condensation to form on new paint when the temp drops, leading to streaks, fading, or poor adhesion.

DON’T paint when the wind is howling. When the wind is really blowing, leaves and other debris can blow onto wet paint and stick there. A strong wind can also cause paint to dry too quickly.

DO crank the heat and open a window when you’re painting indoors because heat plus air flow can help paint dry. Turning on a fan is almost never a bad idea.

Of course, if you’re working with a New England painting company that is concerned with quality, the team handling your painting project will be following these guidelines by default. Experienced painters know that drawing out a project because of weather is better than having to go back and fix the issues that extreme heat, cold, wind, fog, humidity, and rain can cause.

Every Massachusetts exterior painting and interior painting project is different, and unlike other MA interior painting companies, we will always treat your house, building, or surface as one-of-a-kind. Call us for a free estimate at 978-546-6843.

A Paintbrush Primer

For speed, nothing beats paint rollers and sprayers, but brushes will never lose their place in the painter’s toolbox. Only they can do the kind of fine detail work that makes an interior painting or exterior painting job look truly finished. It’s brushes that can reach into tight corners and into trim’s nooks and crannies, trace around window sills and sashes, cut into ceilings, and color along floors.

types of paintbrushes - interior painting company MA

Not all paintbrushes brushes are created equal, however. And even the best paintbrush on the market won’t be suited to every application. Today we’re going to take a look at the anatomy of a paintbrush and what makes a great paintbrush so useful.

Natural vs. Synthetic

Natural bristles from boar or oxen have naturally flagged (i.e., split) tips that are perfect for holding onto paint and then releasing it gradually through each stroke. Some are extremely durable, making them especially useful when painting rough surfaces that might shred a less hardy brush. That doesn’t mean natural bristle paintbrushes can’t lay down a smooth coat, however. Traditionally natural paintbrushes have been the go-to choice for painters using oil paints, varnishes, glossy enamels, poly, and shellac.

Water-based paints are typically paired with synthetic brushes that are crafted from nylon, polyester, or a mix of both. Nylon is the better choice if the choice is between one or the other because it’s very long-lasting, handles well on rough surfaces, and can lay down a smooth coat. However, it can also soak up water and get floppy after prolonged use. The appeal of polyester brushes is in the price tag – but remember that you get what you pay for. The best synthetic option is a paintbrush with both nylon (for durability and action) and polyester filaments (for firmness). Some synthetic brushes have even been designed to mimic the feel of natural bristles, making them appropriate for oil paints and finishes.

Shape for Form and Function

Paintbrushes came in a dizzying variety of sizes and shapes, from your most basic brush that looks like what you see in your mind’s eye when you picture a paintbrush to tiny detail brushes with curved flexible elastomeric (and ergonomic) handles. Some brushes have extra long handles and bent heads for reaching behind things like radiators or into deep crevices. Angled sashes let painters make extra accurate strokes – especially along narrow strips. Tapers offer a painter the ability to control how much paint is released, from wide stripes to fine feathered edges. There are paintbrushes with bristles bunched into a square shape, extra narrow brushes, and extra wide ones, too. And they all have their own uses, so don’t make the mistake of thinking a paintbrush is a paintbrush is a paintbrush.

Choosing the Right Paintbrush

Whether you are tackling an interior painting job or an exterior painting job, a quality brush will make it easier. The true test of a paintbrush’s quality is how well it picks up and releases paint. While there’s no way to test that in a store, reading reviews before shopping can help. And when you’re ready to shop, look for things like tapering (which indicates the brush will form a line as you paint rather than flailing out), a full body (there should be a reservoir in the middle but plenty of filaments on both sides), soft bristles, and quality construction.

At Jerry Enos Interior Painting Company, we know the right products for the job. Every Massachusetts exterior painting and interior painting project is different, and unlike other MA interior painting companies, we will always treat your house, building, or surface as one-of-a-kind. Call us for a free estimate at 978-546-6843.

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The Best Interior Paint Colors for Small Bedrooms

You should feel relaxed in your bedroom. Merely walking into it should make you feel peaceful. Color is a big part of that but remember it’s all subjective. While color psychology suggests that pale blues should be relaxing and bright reds should be stimulating, your own preferences will always be more important when you’re choosing bedroom paint colors.

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But let’s talk in generalities. Bedroom wall colors are more than just decorative. As mentioned above, color can influence the way we feel as well as the way we perceive a space. That makes color an extremely important consideration when you’re dealing with a smaller (or just seriously small) bedroom. Here are some tips to help you find the best colors for your small bedroom:

1. Obviously if you’re selling, your goal should be to choose interior paint colors for the bedroom that make the space look as large as possible. In that case, shades of white or off white (e.g., cream, ivory, pearl, or even light gray) will create a sense of space in the bedroom. And a somewhat brighter white ceiling will create the illusion of height.

small bedroom color ideas

2. In your own bedroom, choose serene colors to promote sleep – think lighter, soothing shades of blue or green like sky or sage. More exciting shades of these colors can make a small space feel practically claustrophobic so if you love them, balance them with a crisp white ceiling, doors, and molding.

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3. Calming colors are especially important in rooms where the bed takes up most of the available floor space. You want your small bedroom to feel cozy – especially if it’s a guest bedroom – not like the walls are closing in around you (even if they are). Be careful of stark whites, which can make a small bedroom feel cold and clinical.

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4. An accent wall is a great way to incorporate a favorite bold color or even a pattern using wallpaper. A deep shade or stimulating pattern can actually elongate a room, making it feel larger. Choose a color scheme that treats the accent wall as the focal point of the room and decorate around that.

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small bedroom paint colors

5. Stop worrying about the fact that your small bedroom is small. Remember when we said color choice is subjective? If a fiery, intense orange interior paint appeals to your aesthetic but you’re worried it will make your already small bedroom feel smaller – chill out! Unlike a living room, it’s okay for a bedroom to “feel small”. When it comes to bedrooms, cozy is good.

6. Light matters. A small bedroom with huge windows that let in plenty of daylight all day long will make a color look one way. That same color in a windowless corner room will look very different. Buy paint samples and actually put them on the wall before making any final decisions.

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Images via: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6/7

At Jerry Enos Interior Painting Company, we know the right products for the job. Every Massachusetts exterior painting and interior painting project is different, and unlike other MA interior painting companies, we will always treat your house, building, or surface as one-of-a-kind. Call us for a free estimate at 978-546-6843.

Peeling Paint in the Bathroom: What Do You Do?

The most common places you might see peeling paint are on bathroom walls and kitchen walls. That’s because these are the areas of the home with the most moisture in the air, and moisture is more often than not the culprit behind peeling paint. While fans that vent outside and adequate ventilation can go a long way toward preventing peeling paint, paint can still peel. Once it does it becomes a prime breeding ground for mildew and bacteria. Worse, it can trap even more moisture doing further damage.

Can you repair peeling paint in the bathroom? The easy answer is yes.

First chipped paint has to be removed completely using a scraper. Nothing but firmly adhered paint should be left behind. Next, it’s time to patch the uneven surface using thing layers of a quick-setting patching compound. Once it’s dry, a layer of all-purpose drywall compound is the finishing touch. This will need to be sanded smooth – preferably with a shop vacuum outfitted with a dust collection bag and a sanding attachment.

Finally, it’s time to prime and paint. Paints specifically marked for use in bathroom is a good choice because it will stand up to the humidity.

As to whether you should repair peeling paint on your own – whether in the bathroom or anywhere else – the answer depends on your comfort level with the project. Are you handy with tools and paint? Then it will likely be a simple project.

But if you’re new to home maintenance or you suspect your home may have lead paint then repairing peeling paint is a job best left to the pros.

This story originally appeared in our monthly newsletter, Prime Time by Jerry Enos Painting company in Massachusettsto subscribe, contact us!

How to Dispose of Paint Safely

When the Jerry Enos Painting crew finishes up on a jobsite, there’s only one thing they’ll leave behind besides a beautiful paint job and that’s the leftover paint. It’s not that we get lazy after putting our noses to the grindstone – rather, it’s that we know that homeowners and other clients are eventually going to need that paint for touch ups. In fact, if all of the paint purchased for a particular project has been used, we’ll make sure the client has a quart of each color they’ve chosen so touch ups are no problem.

But of course, tastes change and homes change hands and that means that what looked gorgeous on the living room walls now no longer seems quite as delightful. In a single decade a room might change color two, three, or even four times! Multiply that by multiple rooms; add in exterior paint for shingles, siding, stairs, and railings; and suddenly it’s not just a few touch up quarts in your basement but stacks upon stacks of half empty gallon cans.

Which, as you probably already know, can’t just go out with the trash as-is. Paint disposal laws and regulations are set by the Environmental Protection Agency but the enactment and enforcement of these rules are generally left to cities and towns. The best way to dispose of old paint is always going to be the exact way recommended by your area’s sanitation department for a given type of paint, but there are other acceptable methods, too. For instance:

Dry it out, then throw it out

Open your acrylic or latex paint cans and put them somewhere outside where they’ll be shielded from the elements. Then you wait! And wait and wait. Once the paint is completely dry the cans, with lids still off, can be put in the trash. Alternately, expedite the drying process with equal parts clay cat litter or commercial paint hardener. For other kinds of paint, you may need to contact your city for hazardous waste pick up.

how to dispose of paint - disposing of old paint

Turn old paint into new paint

This option is for cans that are half or mostly full of paint. Here in MA, the Paint Exchange is the only commercial paint recycling center around and the fee for disposal is $2/can, but many towns have disposal centers that participate in city-run paint recycling programs. Recycling in this context includes simple re-use, re-blending (which is a nice way of saying that many different colors and paint sheens are mixed), and re-processing (which blends old paint and new to create a more versatile product). Check Earth 911 to find the closest drop off site.

Put it on Craigslist – seriously

You may be surprised that there’s demand for your old paint, but as long as you have enough to paint a small room or hallway or the right amount to use in a refinishing project you’ll probably be able to find that paint a new home. Just make sure that old paint hasn’t gone moldy or curdled, and that rust from the can hasn’t gotten into the paint so you’re not just passing on your paint disposal problem to the next homeowner.

Get creative with those old colors

You’ll be amazed at what you can do around the house with little bits of latex paint or other finishes. Many paints can be used in furniture refinishing projects or to “upcycle” things like picture frames, lamps, and trim. Maybe now is the time to finally try your hand at art! We’re not saying you should hold on to old paint forever, but do consider whether it might be helpful in the completion of projects around the house.

Of course, before you do anything to dispose of old paint figure out which cans you absolutely need to keep. Our rule of thumb is that if a color is still on your walls, keep the can. You never know when you’re going to need to patch a hole or touch up a scratch. Annoyed by having to store a big can for just a little paint? Pick up a few empty quart cans at the hardware store. Just make sure that whatever interior and exterior paint you keep is clearly labeled because having to guess at what’s inside an old paint can is no fun.

At Jerry Enos Painting of MA, we know the right products for the job. Every Massachusetts exterior painting and interior painting project is different, and unlike other MA painting companies, we will always treat your house, building, or surface as one-of-a-kind. Call us for a free estimate at 978-546-6843.

Choosing the Right Paint Sheen for Every Wall

If you’ve ever walked through the interior and exterior paint aisle at your local New England hardware store then you know there’s a dizzying array of options from which to choose. Flat… matte… eggshell… velvet… satin… it’s hard enough choosing paint colors! Now you have to choose, well, what exactly?

Those terms – and others like semi-gloss and high-gloss refer to what’s known as sheen. Sheen is defined as the degree of shine in interior and exterior paints, and it can definitely be tricky to pick the right sheen of paint for your walls.

The common paint sheens, in order of lowest shine to highest, are:

  • Flat
  • Matte
  • Low-sheen
  • Velvet
  • Eggshell
  • Satin
  • Semi-gloss
  • Gloss
  • High-gloss

When it comes to choosing the right paint sheen, the rule of thumb is: the higher the shine, the higher the durability. Shinier paints are stain resistant and can be wiped, washed, and even scrubbed with no ill effects. That’s because they create a harder barrier – especially high-gloss paint, which is the hardest and most durable of all the paint sheens.

But of course, durability isn’t the only thing people look for when choosing paint. Flatter sheens minimize imperfections because they don’t reflect as much light, so imperfect walls appear smoother and more beautiful. However, flat, matte, and low-sheen paints are much harder to clean and more likely to stain so probably best for households without small children or pets.

Here’s where to use some of the paint sheens you’ll see on hardware store shelves:

In kitchens, baths, and high-moisture/high-traffic areas, more sheen is better. Flat paints can take on water stains and are almost impossible to clean to like-new condition if exposed to oil or food spills. Semi-gloss is a good option for walls that will encounter sticky finger and trim subject to above-average levels of abuse.

Painting kitchen cabinets and bathroom cabinets calls for high-gloss paint. This hard-wearing sheen of paint is best for any surface that is going to endure a lot of touching or dirt and is also good for window trim. Keep in mind, though, that it will show every imperfection so don’t skimp on the prep work.

choosing paint sheen

Use satin where you want a flatter look without sacrificing durability. Satin combines the look of flatter paints with much of the durability of higher sheen paints, making it good for kids’ rooms, foyers, hallways, dining rooms, and family rooms. Be aware that satin paint will not hide application flaws and that makes it hard to touch up when scratches happen.

Use eggshell in the living room – especially if your walls aren’t perfect. Eggshell looks gorgeous and comforting on living room and grownup bedroom walls, and it’s a great choice on walls that have problems you can’t repair easily. That doesn’t mean you can avoid the usual prep, though.

Once you have a handle on paint sheen, picking the right one for your project should be no problem. The one place you could run into trouble is if you’re switching brands mid-project. One company’s idea of eggshell might be another’s velvet or vice versa. Most hardware stores will have a sheen chart available that can help you make sure that the paint you want comes in the sheen you need.

At Jerry Enos Painting, we know the right products for the job. Every Massachusetts exterior painting and interior painting project is different, and unlike other MA painting companies, we will always treat your house, building, or surface as one-of-a-kind. Call us for a free estimate at 978-546-6843.