I painted “stripes” in the playroom this Spring.  There’s a lot of color-on-color action and it was imperative that I had crisp breaks between the colors- no bleeding or seepage, I wanted PERFECT straight lines.

Check it out:

How’s that for a perfectly straight crisp line between two colors!   That’s a flat wall, not a corner!

OMG the trick I learned is a MUST-KNOW and here’s the How-To Tutorial on how YOU can get crisp lines just like this!

STEP ONE– obviously paint your walls.  Usually you have a lighter color and a darker color if you are painting two colors.  Paint the lighter color first, taking it a couple inches past where your line will be.  When you paint the darker color, only take it about 1″ from where your line will be.

STEP TWO– apply the tape!  When painting a crisp line, it’s better to paint the darker color over the lighter color- less coats of paint, so you want your line to be on the ligher paint.  Mark your line and then tape it with FROG TAPE.  It is absolutely imperative that you use FROG TAPE and not BLUE TAPE.

If you look at my picture, I actually put the tape about 1/8″ away from my line because I wanted there to be NO line when I peeled away the tape.  Don’t put tape ON the line, or when you pull off the tape you’ll still have your pencil line!

STEP THREE:  Paint the lighter color again.  YES, again.  The purpose is to seal the edge so that there’s no seepage of the green paint over the tan paint.  By painting the same color that’s already there, any seepage will be invisible because it’s the same color!

STEP FOUR:  After the lighter color paint dries, apply the darker color over that same area:

You may need to do a couple coats.  Be sure to let the paint dry between coats.

STEP FIVE: After applying the second coat, pull up the tape- yes, while the darker color is still a bit wet.  Not totally wet, but you don’t want it to be totally dry either.  When you lift the tape- you will see this:

Perfectly straight and crisp lines!


So share this with your friends….save the tutorial for your next project, it’s the only way to go!

By the way, this also works for caulking.  I recently repainted all the baseboards around the house and wanted to finish the edges with some fresh caulking for that extra crisp look.  I did not use any paint to seal the edges, just taped both the wall and the baseboard edges about 1/8″ away from where the two meet and then applied the caulk, ran my finger to smooth it, then immediately peeled up the tape- check it out: