Monday, August 13, 2012

how to paint perfect stripes on textured walls


ruler or measuring tape {i use my 4"x14" acrylic omnigrid quilter's ruler. bought at joanns (with a coupon of course) but can also be ordered from amazon.}
1" painter's tape {i prefer blue painter's tape}
roller and tray
level {if you don't have a good eye}

: : first : :

paint the entire wall one of the two stripe colors. 

since my stripes will be white and grey, i painted the wall white.

: : second : :

figure out how many stripes you want.

i like to have a darker colored stripe at the ceiling and at the baseboard, so i would need to paint an odd number of stripes.

put your ruler on the wall and see how wide you'd like your stripes.

i have wide stripes in the new nursery {only 5 stripes on a 9ft wall} and knew i wanted thinner stripes on this wall.

my little equation to figure out stripe width:

wall height {9 feet} x 12 inches = 108 inches - baseboard height = 105 inches.
now i just need to find an odd number that divides easily.
if i did 17 stripes, they would need to be 6.18 inches, but if i did 15 stripes, they would need to be 7 inches wide. that's MUCH easier to measure.

: : third : :

measure and tape.

if your ceiling isn't straight and level, this part could really screw the whole thing up. but mine are, so i just measure 7" and make tiny little marks with my pencil and tape below the marks as i go.

i have a good eye when it comes to seeing things straight, so sometimes i don't always match up my tape with every single little pencil mark if it doesn't look straight if i do.

** next row. **
measure 7" from the top of the tape.
tape above the marks.
this is going to look uneven and weird, but you have to take the 1" painters tape into allowance.
now tear off tiny pieces of tape and tape them along the wall.
you aren't painting this stripe, so those little pieces of tape will be your reminder.

next row.
measure 7" from the bottom of the tape.
** tape below the marks. **

repeat the two steps between the ** stars ** until you reach the bottom.

: : fourth : :


grab your paintbrush and the paint color you painted the whole wall with.

paint over the tape where you will be painting your other stripe color.
sounds confusing.
i know.
what you're doing is sealing the tape to the wall so there is no chance the darker stripe paint color will seep under the tape and bleed.
i've tried every kind of tape and it will still bleed. even if you use the edge of a credit card and really get in those textured spots, it WILL STILL BLEED.
and then you'll be pissed that you spent all that time trying to seal it with a stupid credit card and it didn't work.
this is a tad more work, but it has guaranteed results.
and that makes you happy. 
trust me.

so you only need to paint one edge of the tape, like so:

and be generous.
not so generous it gets all drippy, but generous enough that it seals that tape good.

now let it dry.
don't get impatient and try and do the next color before it's all dry because then you'll have white paint on your grey paint brush.
just WAIT.

now roll on your stripes and use a brush to cut in on the sides, top and bottom {you could tape these as well, and paint to seal the tape, but i only did it at the baseboard this time.}

do a second coat if needed.

: : fifth : :

remove your tape and bask in your pretty clean striped room.


  1. that is amazinf! The process is kind of long and complicated but it all worth it at the end... the result is perfect!

  2. You've seriously just given me the confidence I needed to try to tackle painting stripes on my textured walls. Thank you for sharing!

  3. Thank you, Erin! We have a couple of rooms (teeny tiny bathroom & master bedroom) I would like to incorporate this idea. The Omnigrid will help A LOT! I'd better do this project when my husband isn't home so he doesn't panic:-)
    Thanks again!!


i love candy, sewing and the power to delete :) have a great day!