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Five Most Common Painting Mistakes

Let’s face it, homeowners can make a variety of mistakes in areas from lawn care to decorating their living rooms. However, to make really long lasting mistakes can haunt your wallet. In our line of business we have seen it all, but here are some of the most common mistakes that makes us shake our heads and wonder why they didn’t call us first. Let’s take a look at common painting mistakes.

 

  • Lack of Prep – Prepping to paint a room takes a whole lot more than most people realize. Clearing the room of furniture, wiping down the walls, covering the floor and taping areas off are just a few of the steps needed to start the process off properly. Some prep mistakes we have seen include: floors that become stained by paint drops, spider webs painted into corners and electrical outlets gunked with paint.
  • Skimping on Paint Tools – High quality brushes and rollers may cost a bit extra but there is a reason why professional painters swear by them. Good brushes and roller covers give better coverage and save you on paint in the long run. A common problem with cheaper products is that the knap can come off on the wall and cause clumps and bumps that are unsightly.
  • Skipping the Primer –The purpose of the primer is pretty straightforward. Primer covers flaws in the surface and gives you a smooth, long-lasting finish. Without primer, coverage can be spotting and even missing in some areas. A lack of primer may mean you spend more on the actual paint as it is doing the job of both the primer and the final coat.
  • Painting Over Wallpaper – While it may seem tempting to skip the wall paper removal process and just paint over old wallpaper, it will come back to haunt you in the not too distant future. Not only do homeowners risk having the paper peel or decay, but painting without water based paints can lead to whole other problem later.
  • Cutting Corners on Clean Up – At the end of any painting job no one wants to clean up. You are tired and the last step of washing and cleaning brushes and rollers may seem tedious, but skipping this step may mean you ruin the brush or roller and will need to purchase new products the next time you paint.

 

Want to avoid common homeowner mistakes. Start by calling Jerry Enos Painting and hand the job over top our professionals.

 

 

2016 Design Trends: Encaustic Tile

 

If you’re a fan of patterned tile that draws the eye, this is your lucky year! One of the emerging design trends for 2016 is colorful, cool encaustic tile. This type of varied, kaleidoscopic ceramic tile used for flooring or backsplashes is made from a multicolored clay design inlaid on a background color. While the majority of these tiles are two tone, the design process that produces an encaustic allows for as many as six colors.

 

Tile by Lindsey Lang
Tile by Lindsey Lang

The intricate pattern of the clay is formed first by a die that resembles a cookie cutter, which gets filled by a mixture of natural pigments, Portland cement, and marble dust. In the second step of the tile-making process, the background mixture of solid grey concrete is poured around the finished inlay pattern to form a square.

 

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Encaustic tiles aren’t a new trend – they’ve been used for centuries and were referred to as “inlaid” tiles during the medieval period. They were primarily used in religious settings to adorn ornate churches, and then moved into decorating palatial homes. They enjoyed a resurgence in popularity in America in the late 1800s, but fell out of use in new construction after the Great Depression. Some New York City brownstones still have these type of tiles in the entryway or foyer! Encaustic tiles can be found all over the world, but were most plentiful in England, where the greatest number of the tiles were produced. The tiles are known for their longevity – because the design is ¼ inch thick, the tiles will last for years without wearing down. The below medieval tiles are from Cleeve Abbey in England.

 

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The encaustic tile of 2016 comes in a range of styles and prices. Because of they way they’re made, the tiles are quite heavy – the average 8×8 inch tile can weigh in around three pounds. Many are made by designers who produce them in small batches or by custom order, which can add to the price, but their widening popularity means it’s getting more and more likely your local tile or flooring store has a selection, or can order them for you.

The possibilities for decorating with encaustic tiles are endless, and with so many varieties and styles, will fit with any design scheme! Below, this modern, southwestern take on a zig zag pattern works for living room, kitchen, or foyer.

 

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Don’t limit your imagination to the indoors. Outdoor spaces like the veranda below receive just the right pop of color with these blue patterned tiles. Encaustics are great for spaces that have neutral walls with muted design schemes, so the tiles can really shine!

 

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When it comes to bathrooms, larger encaustic tiles featuring wide patterns can make a small space look bigger, like in this vintage Spanish inspired room featured on House Nerd.

 

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As you can see, encaustics aren’t just a fad – they’ve been around for centuries, and their timeless beauty will improve the look, and value, of any home. So why not choose encaustics in your next renovation project?

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

2016 Design Trends: Rustic Dining Rooms

Often relegated to the back burner and used only when company came, the formal dining room is set to return to glory, as this spring’s emerging design trends will have families wanting to eat there for every meal. According to ElleDecor,  this year more homeowners are opting to keep their formal dining room rather than converting to a family room or office than ever before, and they expect the formal dining room to be a hot design trend for spring.

The D.C. Design House features this gorgeous dining room by designer Sara Wessel. Photo via Architectural Digest.
The D.C. Design House features this gorgeous dining room by designer Sara Wessel. Photo via Architectural Digest.

The dining room tends to get the back burner when it comes time to redecorate or renovate. Compared to the kitchen or living room, it may not see as much use unless it’s the holidays or you’re expecting guests for dinner, so it’s natural to want to redecorate those rooms first. However, keeping your formal dining room fresh and inviting can lead to more family dinners together, as well as increase your home’s resale value.

Photo via Honey Bear Lane
Photo via Honey Bear Lane

One of the top dining trends that has emerged over the past few seasons, the rustic, vintage farmhouse look, continues to gain popularity in 2016. This design style tends to pair well with many of the antique colonial New England homes here on Cape Ann, as well as more modern homes. A country farmhouse decor can lean either towards an industrial, iron factory look, or can be more shabby, colorful, and inviting, depending on individual taste or preference.

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Photo via Indulgy

The simple, timeless farmhouse style table is the staple and centerpiece of a rustic dining room. These tables can either be used with individual chairs, or with wide picnic-style benches, depending on how casual or formal the room should be. Some have been handed down from generations and have seen decades, possibly even centuries, of use.

As these photos show, the wide-planked, large wooden tables look wonderful with either matching, upholstered chairs, or a collection of mismatched wooden chairs that can be found anywhere from thrift stores to flea markets or yard sales. Some rustic farmhouse dining rooms even use vintage iron tractor seats for bar stools.

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Photo via Shades of Light

Lighting is one of the most important parts of any room, and the dining room is no exception. A dining room was once defined by its chandelier – the grander, the better. Thankfully for your eyes, and your wallet, that’s no longer the case, especially when it comes to farmhouse design aesthetics.

A simply stated, unique, light fixture upgrade can draw attention and change the whole look of the room without breaking your budget, especially if paired with a new coat of paint.

 

Photo via Shades of Light

 

When it comes to the rustic look, black iron chandeliers paired with candle-type light fixtures or single hanging Edison lightbulbs surrounded by cages help to evoke a 1920’s vintage farmhouse feel, like the ones above, sold by online retailer Shades of Light.

Photo via Colby Construction/Pinterest
Photo via Colby Construction/Pinterest

Accessories work to pull together a country farmhouse style dining room as well. Everything from vintage bread boxes to checkered napkins can brighten up a country-style dining room. Aged wooden crates can be used as both accent pieces or as actual storage for linens or accessories.

If you’ve left your dining room to languish, now is the time to give it a fresh, clean rustic country makeover.

5 Unique Uses for Blue Painter’s Tape

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 It’s a common scenario – you’ve finished with your painting project, but have a lot of blue painter’s tape leftover. Saving it in your junk drawer or tool bag for the next project is always an option, but if those projects aren’t common, or you just don’t want it lying around, you’re in luck. There are great alternate uses for that ubiquitous blue tape!

  1. Cheap chip clip (say that one five times fast!) Because painter’s tape is meant to be mildly adhesive, it can be used to close an open bag of snacks – and be re-used until the bag’s empty. This is great for camping, picnics, or any other time a chip clip isn’t available. It can also be used to keep other food fresh – sugar or flour bags, bags of rice, and bags of cereal will last much longer with an application of painter’s tape to keep the bags closed.
  2.  As a home project manager: Don’t laugh – it’s true! For instance, if you’re installing curtain rods, and need to keep screws, drill bits, or other small parts within reach while up on a ladder, use painter’s tape to tape them to the top step of the ladder. You know, the one that says “do not use as step.” This means no more screws that roll off the top step, across the floor, and under furniture, or the radiator. They’ll finally stay in place until they’re needed.
  3.  Party helper! Next time you’re hosting a super bowl party, cookout, or birthday party, bring out the blue tape. It has multiple party uses you’ve probably never imagined. For instance, use it to hang decorations so the paint or wallpaper doesn’t get marred. Use it to label drink cups so there’s less waste. Playing twister? Tape down the corners of the board so it doesn’t slip! You can even use it to mark off areas of the home or rooms that you don’t want guests to use, or label the bathroom door to avoid everyone asking where, exactly, the facilities are.
  4. Labels! Because blue painter’s tape is less permanent and sticky than regular masking tape or duct tape, but is easy to write on (unlike packing or scotch tape), it’s great for labeling. Use it to label everything from cords behind your desk or entertainment center, to yard sale item, food in your fridge, or your children’s school items.
  5. Decorating. Blue painter’s tape is useful for making a long, straight line on your wall – that can be removed with no residue – if you’re hanging multiple pieces of art or photos at the same level. Alternately, if you’re attempting to lay out multiple frames on the same wall and want to picture how it will look before making all the nail holes, cut the tape into the dimensions of the frame and place it in its prospective new home. You’ll be able to stand back and get a good feel for the final result, and adjusting the tape is much easier than more drilling or nailing.

With these tips, it’s easy to see how useful that blue tape can be, beyond keeping paint off your ceilings or trim work. So don’t throw it in a drawer forever – make it work for you!

4 Painting Products You Never Knew You Needed

If you’re like most DIY homeowners who have no problem tackling a smaller painting project (whether or not you leave those bigger projects to the professionals like us), you may think you already know all the tools you need to get the job done. Painter’s tape, a tray, rollers, and roller covers, right? Not so fast. There’s a whole array of painting products you didn’t know you needed – especially if you’re up for not only one painting task, but many over the course of months or even years! Here’s a few added tools to think about before you begin your next painting task. While we don’t specifically endorse any product over another, we found some great tools that have been rated well among buyers.

Paint Fragrance Additive

These concentrated fragrance additives for latex or oil paint can work wonders on walls where odor is an issue, such as in homes formerly owned by smokers, multiple pets, or kitchens with heavy, long-term cooking odors. There are many scent choices that can last for weeks after application, including linen, citrus, and Gloucester’s favorite, sea breeze!


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They are available online, as well as at your local Benjamin Moore paint store, and come in a variety of fresh scents. Most come in one ounce packets or bottles, and mix in with one gallon of paint or primer.

Mr. Long Arm Extension Paint Pole

For painting ceilings, stairways, or tall walls, ladders will work – but there’s always the danger of a slip and fall. For $17, you can purchase a paint pole that will remove those precarious ladders. The poles thread into the end of a standard paint roller, as well as standard broom ends – which makes this useful for not only painting, but for cleaning cobwebs or other chores.

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The Rejuv-A-Roller

Most DIY-ers toss out their roller cover after their project is finished. But why not spend a little more on a better-quality roller that last through multiple projects, and then wash it clean after you’ve finished? The Rejuv-A-Roller does just that, and is less than $20. It’s not only cost-effective, but environmentally friendly as well – and better quality rollers not only use less paint, but make your job much easier and faster. The Rejuv-A-Roller hooks up to a standard sink. When the water runs clear, your work is done! The product only works with water-based paints, and can clean rollers from 3” to 9”.

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Paint and Store Lid

Pouring from a gallon of paint can be unwieldy, wasteful, and prone to spills. Avoid that, and keep your paint fresh, with a stretchy, re-usable lid that also functions as a pouring spout.  The lid helps your paint last longer by minimizing air contact, while also avoiding the potential disaster of an overturned can. Best of all, it’s inexpensive and will last through many projects. Use with water-soluble paint only.

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While some of these items can be found online, a lot are located right at your local paint store, Ben’s Paint here in Gloucester – which comes with the added bonus of professionals to give you advice on anything else you’ll need for your project.

Announcement – Lynn Fire Claims Life of Jerry Enos Team Member

We at the Jerry Enos Painting family are saddened to announce we lost a member of our team last Friday evening when a three-alarm house fire in Lynn claimed the lives of four people. Rodolfo Mercedes died after going back inside the burning home to try to find his mother. He had been a valued member of the Jerry Enos team for three years.

Rodolfo was a hard worker who liked to help others. He was quite close to his family, who were all avid Lynn Spanish 7th Day Adventist church-goers.

rodolfo

His uncle, Santiago Cruz, is also a longtime employee of the company. He has lost not only his nephew Rodolfo, but two sisters, including one who was seven months pregnant, and his 19 year old niece, a college student. Two other family members, one a Lynn English high school senior were saved by firefighters. The cause of the blaze is yet undetermined, but not only have the Cruz family lost four members, but 18 survivors living at the three-unit home are left with nothing but the clothes they were wearing.

We ask you to keep the Cruz family in your thoughts and prayers, and a memorial fund has been set up to help Santiago’s family with funeral costs for all four victims. To donate, please mail a check payable to Memorial Fund for Four Victims of Lynn Fire ℅ Salem Five Bank, 210 Essex St, Salem MA 01970.

Featured Local Artist: Peter Herbert of Annisquam

For the past twenty years, local artist Peter Herbert of Annisquam has been following his passion for painting here on Cape Ann. Since his retirement from practicing law in 2006, he has been able to paint on a daily basis.

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Peter’s chosen field is mainly outdoor “plein air” representational landscapes and housescapes. However, he also offers portrait painting for subjects who come to his home studio and pose while he paints. Much of his work can be seen on his website, peterherbertpainter.com.

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Landscape View towards Essex Marshes

Herbert’s work has been exhibited in many galleries in Cape Ann and beyond. In New York City, his art has been featured at The Crosby Gallery, The Century Association, and the Art Students League. Locally, his work has been displayed at the Wenniger Gallery in Rockport, the Rockport Art Association, the North Shore Arts Association in East Gloucester, as well as every summer at the Annisquam Art Fair. Currently, he shows his art at his home studio by appointment.

Down Squam Rock Road

When asked which other artists have influenced him most , Herbert explained, “My favorite artists are Spanish painter Joachin Sorolla because, in my opinion, no one has ever painted light on form the way he did (and my definition of art is the painting of light on form). My favorite portrait painters are Lucian Freud for oversized non-traditional approaches, and Rembrandt and John Singer Sargent for traditional work.”

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Herbert explained that his creative process is simply to go out and paint, regardless of whether he is in the mood. “Mood of course is sometimes created when a particular scene or subject strikes you as exciting for many different reasons. Most often, mood is created when you start to paint and can see the abstract shapes that make up an ordinary subject. A painter doesn’t think in terms of grass, trees, mountain, sky etc. But rather when we look at an outdoor subject, we see abstract shapes, colors, values (the degrees of lights and darks that appear in our vision. It is seeing in this way that excites me as a painter. If I were simply painting “things,” rather than light on form, I would not be a painter.”

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Herbert’s advice to novice painters is this: “Painting can be easy if you look at the world as a patchwork quilt of abstract shapes like a jigsaw puzzle, and include in your painting only the big shapes – like the shape of the land mass, the ocean mass, the mountain mass, the sky mass, overall shape of a tree – painting each shape the middle value of the color that you see. Then make each colored shape its degree of lightness or darkness. That’s all you need to know. Then, you must do this many many times, and you will be a painter.”

Currently, Peter’s work can be seen by private appointment at his home in Annisquam. He can be reached by telephone at 978-283-2263, or via e-mail at peteraherbert@comcast.net.

 

Pro Tip: Wait to Paint Until AFTER a Move

What is the first thing most of us do once we’ve bought a home or signed a lease? We start contemplating paint colors. After all, there are so many walls to consider and the furniture’s not even in yet so the timing seems perfect!

But trust us when we say wait. Before you start browsing for paint chips at the paint store, stop and shift your focus to more important things like getting your surprisingly big piano through the surprisingly narrow family room door. Here’s why:

Toronto designer Judith Taylor had plenty to say in her Houzz piece about making any room better but her number one tip was waiting until last to pick the color of the wall paint. She understands the appeal of moving into a freshly painted house or apartment but says that generally it’s not ideal from a design point of view. That’s because there are literally thousands of colors of paint – and each of those can come in various shades and tints.

The color you love in your current home may not be right for the analogous space in your new home thanks to differences in shape, size, and lighting.

Plus, she adds, chances are you’re going to be buying some new furniture and accessories or using your old stuff in new and exciting ways. Ideally, you “want the color that best complements your upholstery, artwork, rug, and whatever else. You can pick that color only if your stuff is actually inside your home.”

Is it convenient? Not necessarily since painting in situ means having to move and drape everything you own. But waiting until you’re moved in before even beginning to explore the vast variety of paint colors available may mean you end up with a more cohesive, more beautiful space.

Quick tips:

Spend a few weeks getting a feel for how light looks and changes throughout the day in each room you plan to paint.

Look for paint colors and shades that complement your upholstery, artwork, and rugs in their new placements. Consider whether you plan to move any furniture or accessories.

When you’re ready to paint, take the time to move, cover, and otherwise prep each room from top to bottom.

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

 

All About Accent Walls!

accent walls - interior painting companies MA

Before you ask, let’s get it out of the way: an accent wall is just one wall in a room that’s painted a different color. Usually a much lighter, much darker, or more saturated color, but not always. An accent wall defines the room much more clearly than any one color applied to all four walls can. In fact, accent walls are a lot more like décor accessories than like interior paint. A painted accent wall can also highlight something like a treasured piece of furniture or your favorite artwork. It may also help create a seamless color flow from room to room. In either case, painted accent walls are a striking design element that can transform any room from ordinary to extraordinary.

Pink girls bedroom accent wall

Considering an accent wall in a living room or bedroom? As with any interior paint color decisions, it helps to think about what you’re trying to accomplish. A vibrant color can bring areas and elements of a room into focus and maximize the look of a smaller space. A warm color can make a space feel cozier. For instance, in a hallway that seems cavernous, a warm color accent wall at one end will make that length less obvious. On the other side of the spectrum, a cool color can visually expand a space. A single cool hued accent wall will make any room feel more expansive.

We mentioned vibrant colors specifically because many people use an accent wall to showcase a favorite bold color safely. Worried about too much dramatic color in one space? Painting one accent wall is a way to dip your toes in without a big commitment. There’s plenty of impact but the color doesn’t become overwhelming.

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How to Paint Accent Walls

Now, which wall to choose… Remember that whatever wall is painted will draw the eye toward it, so whatever is along that wall will attract more attention than before. But consider that the same wall will lose a lot of its impact if it’s mostly obscured by a big china cabinet and a massive TV. On the other hand, a totally exposed accent wall with no furniture or artwork on it can be a little much. So when you’re deciding which wall will become your new accent wall don’t be afraid to move furnishings!

interior paint accent walls tips

If you’re still not sure which wall works best, look at the room as it is right now. Do any of the walls seem like the right choice – do you get a gut feeling that there’s one option that makes more sense? Don’t ignore that hunch! A friend can help here, too. Have them walk into the room and tell you their first impressions. Which wall do they think ought to be enhanced with a new color? Why?

orange accent wall - painting company in MA

Once you’ve chosen your accent wall, it’s time to nail down a color choice. Maybe you already have one in mind based on the décor of the room – but maybe not. In that case, it’s time to work on choosing a color palette for the room as a whole. To pick an accent color, think of a color you adore and google some of its different shades. Blue might be sky blue, peacock, navy, teal, or a greenish Caribbean ocean blue. You can build a color palette around the accent wall or work in the opposite direction, choosing a color that works with the existing wall color. There’s no right or wrong way to make your decision.

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In fact, you can even get creative with patterns and stencils. If you’re not comfortable painting a patterned accent wall you can explore the possibilities of wallpapering a single wall for extra pizzazz. Vinyl decals are another easy option – one that’s easy to experiment with because you can swap them out any time you want.

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And there you have it! That’s the skinny on accent walls, from how to pick them to how to paint them!

Summertime Grilling: Get an Early Start with These Warm Weather Favorites

summer grilling - deck restoration

Are you totally ready for summer – real, honest-to-goodness summer – to get here so you can get outside on your newly restored deck and start grilling? Us too, but we say “Why wait?” We start grilling out on our decks as soon as there’s even the hint of a thaw!

Summer staples like burgers and dogs may seem a little out of place on your plate before beach season, so fill up that propane tank and give some of these springtime grilling favorites a try.

Swap out beef for lighter fare like chicken or salmon. An apricot glaze or butter, dill, and freshly squeezed lemon will give you your first taste of summertime!

Grilled asparagus seasoned with nothing more than olive oil, salt, and pepper cooks quickly to perfection right on the grill. Make it even tastier by topping it with shaved parm and thinly sliced almonds.

Craving more veggies? Bell peppers – red, green, yellow, or orange – grill up amazingly delicious with no or very little seasoning needed.

Round out your May meal with new potatoes cooked with butter, salt, and crushed garlic – quartered new potatoes can’t go on the grill directly, of course, so make a little dish with heavy duty aluminum foil.

And now for the surprise ending. Grilled pineapple is an amazing spring and summertime dessert that’s easy, too. Toss pineapple rings with brown sugar and cinnamon, and grill for a treat that’ll leave people wondering why THEY never tried fruit on the grill!

Of course, anything goes when it comes to grilling, but here’s a hint: rosemary, parsley, dill, and cilantro make everything springier!

Image via: woodleywonderworks