After months in the new space, I’m slowly but surely getting around to larger studio projects that I’ve been wanting to tackle since we moved in. Finally, right?! My plan from the get-go was to keep everything light and white, for shooting. But after being here for a little while, I’ve realized that there are a few key areas that are calling out for pops of color.
I’ve been really into the pattern trend these last few months and with murals popping up in my feed more and more too, I thought a colorfully painted mural in a geometric(ish) pattern would be perfect for the upstairs half wall. But it would also be a cool DIY idea for an entryway, hallway, or landing. No half wall required!
The painting process and overall design was partially planned out and partially on-the-fly, AND (more importantly) 100% doable for anyone wielding a paintbrush with a little bit of time on their hands. Here’s what you’ll need to make a mural like mine…
- ScotchBlue™Pre-Taped Painter’s Plastic (to protect baseboards and floors from paint splatters and drips)
- ScotchBlue™ Delicate Surfaces Painter’s Tape
- damp cloth for cleaning baseboards (if necessary)
- screwdriver for unscrewing wall outlet plates (if necessary)
- paint roller
- paint brush (I like to have a 2 inch wide short handle brush)
- flat interior paint (in 2 colors)
- paper, pencil, and scissors (optional – see step 6)
Note: Follow all ScotchBlue™ Painter’s Plastic package instructions for proper surface cleaning and prep, adhesion and removal.
1. Start by cleaning baseboards with a damp cloth and making sure your walls are free of debris. Remove any outlet plates on the wall with a screwdriver as well.
2. Once the wall and baseboards are completely dry and free of debris, apply ScotchBlue™Pre-Taped Painter’s Plastic (available in 2 sizes in a loaded dispenser like mine) the same way to apply regular painter’s tape. Get as close to the edge where the baseboards meet the wall as possible and press down firmly over the tapes surface with your fingers (or a putty knife) to make sure the tape is secure. Cut the end of the Painter’s Plastic with the attached blade and unfold the Painter’s Plastic to cover baseboards and flooring.
Note: I love this product so much, I used the Painter’s Plastic on the top on the wall as well, where there is a little overhang. The fact that I didn’t have to buy a drop cloth to protect my floors, baseboards, or top molding was pretty cool in my book. Paint can get expensive, so the more money I can save on projects like this one, the better.
For more tips and tricks on masking, etc visit the “How to Mask for Painting” section on ScotchBlue.com.
3. Next, paint the wall, with a paint roller and paint brush (for the trim areas) in a solid color. Apply a second coat of paint, if necessary according to the wait time suggested on the paint you’re using. Then wait 24 hours for the walls to dry completely before moving onto the next step.
4. Next, using ScotchBlue™ Delicate Surfaces Painter’s Tape (which is for delicate surfaces, like freshly painted walls, and comes in a variety of widths), start taping off large geometric shapes in a random allover pattern. When applying the tape, press firmly over the tapes surface with your fingers (or a putty knife on smooth walls, if you prefer) to make sure the tape is secure.
Note: Be sure to step back and look at how the shapes are looking together as a whole every so often to make sure you like what you see. If you need to make changes, you can easily remove the tape and start again. Much easier to get it right during this step than to have to repaint later.
5. Once you are satisfied with the basic pattern, use a roller and/or brush to paint inside the tape lines with the second paint color. Wait for paint to dry before adding a second coat if necessary.
6. While you’re waiting for the paint to dry from step 5, I decided to use some heavy paper to create some smaller stencils to fill in additional areas that looked too plain. This step is completely optional, but if you want some organic shapes in your mural as well, this would be the time. I traced household objects for circles, half circles, etc and drew a couple of additional shapes freehand. Then, cut them out and traced them onto the wall with a pencil. And then painted them with a paint brush.
Note: I also found it helpful to tape the shapes to the wall before tracing them, to make sure I liked the placement before painting.
7. Once all the wall paint has completely dried, it’s time to remove the tape and painter’s plastic. Starting with ScotchBlue Painter’s Plastic, slowly remove tape at a 45° angle and pull the tape back onto itself for best results. This will give you a nice crisp line.
8. Then remove ScotchBlue™Pre-Taped Painter’s Plastic, the same way you removed the Painter’s Tape in step 7. And if you don’t get around to this part right away, it’s okay! This product can be removed cleanly up to 14 days after painting, so you’re good to go.
Photography Amelia Tatnall + Brittni Mehlhoff
If you were painting a mural like this one, in your home, what colors would you use?
This post is in partnership with 3M. All opinions are my own and additional products used in the project were selected by me. Thanks for supporting the brands that help keep Paper & Stitch running.