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S & S Painting llc

Mechanicsville, VA

Quaint, But Hard to Paint

The crew had five days to spruce up the entire house while still respecting its historic character.

Old homes have character, and much of that character is from the charming advance of aged imperfection. It’s quaint, but hard to paint. S&S, on the map to paint a nearly 95-year-old home, was given a deadline of five days to repaint the house, updating and maintaining that “olde tyme” character at the same time. “We had to prep, prime and paint the ceiling, walls and trim throughout the entire house, which was made up of two bedrooms, one bathroom (with a claw-foot tub), a hallway, long closet, living room, dining room, kitchen and mudroom,” said company owner Stacey Spear.

The age of the house prevented them from their usual sand and prep routine, and like many homes of that age, the trim had been caulked and painted several times over the years, and not always professionally, which put up a barrier to cutting in a straight line. The medium-lustre paint requested by the homeowner would amplify any imperfections if not properly applied.

Since the original trim was coated with oil, instead of sanding it the crew decided to degloss. “We filled holes and small imperfections in the walls with DryDex, and then wet sanded so as to not disturb the existing paint,” said Spear. Then a bit of magic: “In order to make straight lines along the trim we created our own line slightly further out from the trim. It was an illusion to the eye,” said Spear.

If you’re going to paint a house with character, it helps to have the character to paint it!

The crew deglossed before applying a new coat of flat.   A special challenge was “straightening out” uneven trim.

Key Products

  • SW Cashmere Flat
  • SW Extreme Blocking Oil Primer
  • SW Multi-Purpose Latex Primer
  • SW ProClassic Waterborne Alkyd, semi-gloss New White
  • SW ProMar Ceiling Paint White