If your ceiling has imperfections, you can camouflage them with nothing more than a little creativity, some stencils and paint. Painting a border and finishing it with stencil work can hide all of the imperfections and draw the eye to the beautiful design you have created.
Clean the Ceiling
Before the ceiling can be painted, it must be cleaned.
- Use a broom to knock down all of the cobwebs and dust.
- Wrap the end of your broom with a damp cloth and wipe the ceiling. This can also be done with a flat-mop and soapy water.
- If the ceiling is textured, dip the tip of your broom bristles into a bucket of soapy water and do your best to remove dirt built up on the ceiling.
- Let the ceiling dry.
Prep the Ceiling
Properly prepping the ceiling will ensure that the finished product looks as beautiful as you hope.
- Use painter's tape to tape all of the edges to prevent paint from getting on the adjoining walls and trim.
- Tape around light fixtures.
- Remove ceiling fan blades or cover them with trash bags to protect them from paint splatters.
- Cover the floor with drop cloths. If you are using multiple cloths, tape them together to keep them from separating as you move the ladder around the room. Plastic cling carpet runners can also be used to cover the flooring.
Apply the Base Coat
Applying a fresh base coat will help to ensure the finish is even. Choose a light shade – typically white or off-white is used on ceilings, but if you are feeling courageous, go with a light shade that you enjoy and that coordinates nicely with your décor.
Choosing the type of paint should be relatively easy. Latex paint is much easier to work with than oil based as it is much easier to clean up when you are done. Semi-gloss paint will help to brighten the space because it will reflect the light in the room without showing every flaw on the ceiling. If the ceiling has many, many imperfections, choose a flat or egg-shell finish paint. These finishes won't reflect as much light, but they will work well to conceal the imperfections.
Wait for the paint to dry fully before continuing.
Create the Border
How broad of a border do you want in your room? For best results, smaller rooms should have smaller borders – a 10' by 10' room should have a border that is roughly 8". Measure the width of the border the whole way around the room marking your measurements with a pencil. Then, use the painter's tape to tape off the edge to ensure that the finish is perfect.
Use a roller with a shield on it. This will help you to decrease the amount of paint splatter that you get in your face while you paint above your head. Take the shield off now and then to wipe off the excess paint to keep it from dripping off.
Stencil the Details
Let the paint dry and follow up with some stencil work. You can use any stencil to create the design that you want. Consider using the same stencil on your ceiling fan to create a dramatic effect.
If you aren't comfortable with completing this project on your own, talk with your local painting contractor, like Meyer & Meyer, for assistance.