Any tips to get a better straight line?

20 Sep 2010
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United Kingdom
Hey folks,

Just painted my porch and the meeting with the coving, although it was masked with tape, is really all over the place.




Masking tape was used, but still not looking neat. Any tips and tricks about how to get a better straight line, or ways of touching this up?

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A good paint brush and carefully done. Most pro decorators that I have seen don’t tape.

Doesn’t help a light against dark colour any little imperfection is visible.
Steady hand and lots of practice.

Don't get too much grey on the grey wall, it may make the wall look patchy.
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Frogtape. The yellow (low tack/delicate surfaces) one. Make sure you peel it off (carefully) before the paint dries, and ideally leave fresh paint a few days before sticking any tape onto it. Works much better than masking tape in terms of bleeding edges. Expensive (I think) but made all the difference on cornicing/feature walls for us...
Will be impossible to get a good line between coving with and wall using two different colours unless you clean up the coving adhesive that are giving you rough edges between coving and wall. Perhaps run a sharp blade along or something?
I'd do it with a small, well-loaded brush and no tape.
I would recommend a decent quality 3 inch brush.

You may need to run a bead of caulk first to make the area smooth and then allow the coving paint to deviate on to the wall before then cutting in the dark colour.

Try to use a moveable light source to cast a shadow under the join between the coving and wall. You can then use the shadow as a datum line to follow.

Either don't drink any booze the night before or have a pint before cutting in.

Try to work with long strokes, approx 40cm or more depending on how well the paint flows. A little bit of water or Floetrol will help the paint to flow.
I found frog tape was rubbish for me. I even used a wallpaper guide blade.

I ended up using a 2” paintbrush and a steady hand. There was a good technique on youtube. Don’t load up with too much paint, apply enough pressure that the bristles splay out a bit and maintain the flow.

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