Popular Interior Paint Colours for 2014

August 20th, 2014

A fresh lick of paint really revamps a space and brings life to any room.  This seasons colours are beautiful, rich and natural, the amazing hues chosen by designers and painters for this year is a colour palette created by nature.  2014’s colour schemes are derived from the ocean and the forest with cool colours of sky blue and mint green, warm sandy beige’s and browns inspired by drift wood.  The calming seaside colours can be lifted with pinks, whites, yellows or industrial shades.  Here are a few tips on how to use these vogue colours and make them your own.

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Classic.

The ocean hues range from mint green to pale delicate blue to fresh turquoise.  Use these blues to paint the walls and choose cushions and throws in sandy beige and seashell pink.   Use this colour combination in a room full of natural light and lined with windows.  The light and colours will help you to feel like you’re on vacation all year round.

Modern.

Make these natural and neutral colours modern by pairing them with contemporary designs.  A room full of the lively colours inspired by the beach can be striking with industrial metals in rust or dark silver.  This is perfect for a kitchen space.  Paint your cupboards blues or beige’s and invest in a rust coloured bench top to lift the room.  Be inspired by the beach but play with modern elements.

European.

Be inspired by the energy of nature, use bright and friendly colours to accent the walls in the living room, family room or kitchen.  Combine cool teals with rich reds and bright yellows for a touch or European summer.

Cooling.

If you live somewhere too hot you will try anything to stay cool.  Cool yourself down with colours of the sea in any room.   Pick greens and blues of jewel and mint tones.  The calming colours will help feel cool and calm even in the middle of summer.

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Warming.

The tone of the year is ocean, the colour of the year is mellow yellow, these themes combined create a beautiful warming space.  Use yellow in open spaces  to create a fun, fresh and warm space.

Calming.

For the bedroom stick with the beachy colours but add in pastel tones.  Creamy whites, pinks, yellows and greens are light and airy creating a good space to relax and sleep.

Pretty.

For the living room go for beautiful natural colours, stick with filtered blues and  greens but add a splash of lilac for a breath of fresh air.  These colours are timeless and will look beautiful in winter and summer.

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Natural

All the tones for 2014 are neutral but try to stay away from cold hard surfaces which can be common in modern life, look to the woods for warm colours.   Think grey stones, apple green and deer brown.  These colours with pops of blue evoke a wonderful sense of nature, these colours are stylish but ultimately create a comfortable home.

Mud.

Brown colours are beautiful, natural and can be paired with almost any colour.  This years delicately named colour looks beautiful with shades of blue or off black.  Use in the bathroom or kitchen for a striking change.

White.

White is always an easy choice but this year its not for the walls.  Paint walls warm greys or shades of taupe and create a beautiful sun room with white furnishings.

Style: "Agfa"

Ombre.

Ombre colouring has been a popular choice for almost everything over the past 2 years, this year it has reached paint.  Go safe with grey to white or be more bold with red and yellow on walls and furniture.  The ocean wouldn’t be complete without a beautiful sunset.

 

Go for beautiful, warm and natural colours this year and make any living space will like the ocean.

System Heating and Cooling Split Systems vs Seperate Appliances

August 19th, 2014

Australia is a beautiful and versatile country, we have hot summers spent on the beach and cold winters spent playing in the snow.  Which is great but in Melbourne, Canberra and Sydney it means that one heating or cooling system isn’t sufficient. Most homes have one or both but the cost of buying and maintaining two systems can be a lot.  The main options for heating a home or business is ducted heating, standalone heaters or split system heaters. For cooling you can opt for refrigerated air conditioning, reverse cycle air conditioning, evaporation cooling or fans. But with all these options it is sometimes hard to know which one is right for you. Here is a brief over view of what each systems pro and con is.

Refrigerated Air Conditioning 

Pro- Refrigerated air conditioners are a premium choice for Australians.  The air conditioners work in both dry and humid conditions. The unit sits in a roof cavity and blows down.  Refrigerated air conditioning, despite the name, heats and cools so can be used in any season.

Con- It heats and cools just as a split system does but is twice the price to run.

appliance 1

Evaporative Cooling

Pro- Evaporative Cooling is the cheapest way to cool your home of work place and there are many great Australian air conditioning brands on offer.  Fresh air is drawn from the outside across water-filled pads & distributed via ducting in the roof and blown down. The system is quiet and is still effective even if windows or doors are left open.

Con-As it draws in air from outside it does not work well in humid conditions.   Only invest in this appliance if you live in a hot, dry state.

Fans

Pro- Fans are cheap and are easy to set up and start running. You save costs on workmen and installation costs. A fan can be moved to any room with you and packed away in the colder months.

Con-They don’t actually provide cooling, only wind.  They are not very effective for cooling a large area down but just provide a breeze for one of two people directly in front of it.

Ducted Heating

Pro-Ducted heating can be installed in the roof or the floor giving great versatility in price and location. The heating is provided by gas and usually an outlet is installed in each room of the building.  The whole house can be heated with the touch of a button, it is cost effective, requires little maintenance and is very efficient.

Con- Unless you opt for the more expensive ‘zone heating’ you can’t just heat one room and it works best if all the doors inside a building are open for airflow. This isn’t great for privacy or if only one area needs to be heated.

how-ducted-air-conditioners-work

Standalone Heaters

Pro-They work fast, are cheap to buy and can be moved from room to room with you.

Con-They don’t heat wide areas and can be expensive to keep running.

Split-System Air Conditioners

Pro-They are designed for heating and cooling single rooms and multiple rooms so are perfect for the home or office. They are cheap to run and require little to no maintenance. They can be installed in one room or linked into multiple rooms via copper piping.

Cons- They are big, bulky and ugly. They take up quite a bit of room and need to be installed professionally.

Hope this helps when you are choosing what system to install in you home or work place.   Whether you are upgrading, renovating or buying a new home temperature appliances are a must.  Call a professional for more advice, installations or repairs!

 

Heating up the home: Fire Place Options

January 29th, 2014

If you’re looking at building a home, or renovating, selecting heating options is a unique choice for owners. However many people are looking at multiple options, with ducted heating and fireplaces.

If you think installing a fireplace into your home is the right option there’s a few things you need to consider.

In this era there are more options than the traditional ‘real log’ fireplace. Although the inbuilt fireplace is a common choice for many people, there are many different available choices. You need to think about what you’re aiming to get out of the the fireplace, what you’re willing to spend, and how much maintenance you’re willing to complete. Luckily you can easily find an option that best suits your circumstances.

Structure:

Fireplace options come in a range of different structures, and this is only one factor to consider when looking to install one into your home. You can choose from the following:

Wall Mounted/ Inbuilt:

Wall mounted fireplaces are generally considered to be ones that burn ‘real wood’ however wall mounted fireplaces can also be electrical, or gas. If you’re thinking of a wall mounted style then you must consider this in great depth, as this requires some major renovation work. You’ll need to pay to get the whole thing designed, in accordance with your wall structure. However the actual fireplace insert can varying in price depending on your choice of brand. Running costs will also be dependent on whether it’s electrical, gas, or real wood.

 

fire 2

Free Standing:

Another option in terms of structure is the free-standing fire place, another common choice for home owners. With this option you don’t need any grand re-structuring, as it stands off the wall and is connected via the chimney to the roof. You can also get this type in wood, gas or electricity.

fire 3

Portable:

A portable fire place is the perfect choice for those who don’t want to commit to a permanent structure in their home. If you choose an indoor portable fireplace then it will run off electricity, a cheaper option than gas. You will also find that there are many sizes and styles available.

fire 4

 

When deciding the structure of your fireplace you need to co-currently consider what type of fuel you want to use, as you can get electrical, gas, or wood fireplaces.

Electrical:

  • Doesn’t require regular maintenance.
  • Safe- no fumes or carbon dioxide.
  • Easy functioning, simply connect to power point.
  • Cost depends on usage and power price.

Gas:

  • Gas fireplaces can easily mimic the look of real wood fires.
  • Simple functioning, and can be used with remote.
  • Vented and non vented types available.
  • Installation can be expensive.

Real Wood/Log:

  • Best thing about your real log fire is the naturalistic aspect- if you like smelling and hearing the sounds of your rustic fire.
  • You don’t need electricity to use this fireplace.
  • Requires a lot more maintenance and cleaning then any other fireplace (cleaning ashes, grime, restocking wood, stoking utensils).
  • Won’t heat large areas of a home, but can heat closed rooms or areas.

Installing or buying a fireplace for your property is a major investment in most cases, so ensuring you know the details of your options is important. You don’t want to invest in an electrical portable heater if you want to use it as your main source of heating, as it won’t do you justice.

Make sure your do your research and look at all the brands before you make the leap of faith!

 

 

Bench-Top Ideas and Materials

October 29th, 2013

When you’re deciding on adding some extra spark or style to your kitchen, looking at different kitchen bench- tops can be the perfect solution. You may also be thinking about kitchen bench tops when completing some kitchen renovations.

Looking at the expansive range of kitchen bench tops can be an exciting process, as there are so many different options.

You’ll see some very glamorous and expensive options, as well as some more affordable types. If you’re unsure about your decision it may more appropriate to ask questions when working with a kitchen and bathroom renovation specialist, they may be able to shed some new light on particular styles.

If you do decide to You really need to set yourself a budget when looking at bench-top options, as you can easily get confused by all the different brands and prices. However there are the basic bench top materials to consider, and with these types you can reach a basic understanding on what will suit your kitchen.

Natural Stone:

Generally speaking natural stone bench- tops are on the pricey side but are very popular due to the different looks available. Made of complete stone it’s very classy and very easy to clean. It’s unlikely you’ll scratch this surface as it’s very durable material. All need to be resealed to keep the standard in check. Make sure you’re careful with breakable objects on this bench- top, it can smash a lot of precious items.

You can get : Limestone, Granite, Sandstone, Marble, Slate and Soapstone

Granite- You can get a whole range of colours, from natural beige, to subtle blue tones. Is of a denser material than marble.

Marble- You could definitely say this is the epitome of elegance, with it’s many beautiful designs and patterns.

marble 1

Stone Composite/ Engineered Stone:

Made from reconstituted stones/ granite granules or quartz, and mixed with a resin or silicon base. Easily withstands most heat applied (however not if excessive heat is regularly applied this will cause a stain). You can choose from a range of styles and tones. It will not easily scratch so you don’t have to be too careful when bustling around the kitchen. If you’re looking for a cheap option, this is not the right product, as it’s usually quite expensive. Brands include: Ceasarstone, Essastone, Stone Italiana & Silestone

Laminate :

Laminate bench- tops are the most popular choice in households, due to their price and range. You can find endless amounts of styles and looks, as the top layer is made from melamine resin. With this type of material it’s very easy to imprint designs and colours, so you can even get one which mimics a more expensive type. If you’re on a budget this is the option for you. However with all types there are some disadvantages, it’s not good with heat, marks can easily be imprinted, and when it does wear out it’s very noticeable.

laminate

Glass:

Glass material for bench- tops isn’t an overly popular choice, and usually because it seems expensive and fragile. It could be said that more people are afraid to go in this direction purely due to their own imprinted bias surrounding glass, however this bench- top isn’t the scary thought we imagine. Apart from looking clean and fresh in the kitchen, the glass used is not thin, so it’s very resistant to breakage. Another bonus is that it’s completely heat resistant. Downside is that it can be expensive if you have a large area to cover, and it’s usually cut to size.

Types include: plain glass, tinted, patterned slumped, and painted.

Timber:

Timber bench tops can look very suave and stylish, especially when you’re going for a rustic look. You can choose from different wood types and this means being able to select according to your budget. If you’d like to keep banging noise out of the kitchen, this is a much better option than any other hard bench-top materials. However you’ll need to be careful with hot pans and kettles, as this is wood, it won’t withstand direct heat.  If you regularly reseal this bench top then you can keep it’s quality in tact for a long time.

timber

Stainless Steel:

Stainless steel bench-tops has a definite look and feel, so if you’re heading in this direction you obviously want to go with a particular style. Usually you’ll find stainless steel to be in commercial kitchens, due to their industrial strength. Stainless steel will provide a sleek and simple surface to your kitchen, with the benefit of durability. Although your stainless steel bench top can be scratched, it will not be affected by heat, is easy to clean, and is easy to maintain.

 

With this basic information you should have a better idea on what direction to go with bench- tops, however it doesn’t hurt to do further research like go directly to manufacturer websites and look at different designs other home owners have implemented. Make sure you choose an option that will best suit your circumstances and match your budget.

 

Hot water system issues!

May 20th, 2013

Do you have a hot water system that’s decided to start playing up? Perhaps its leaking? If you’re not a plumber then it’s difficult to figure out what’s actually happening inside the water system itself, you can see it’s leaking, but the reason isn’t obvious. Generally the life of a hot water system is between 10 and 12 years, so make sure you check the date of the system to ensure you shouldn’t be already thinking about replacing it. If it’s under this time period then you should investigate the problem further, as there can be a few different things wrong with it. If you hot water system is inside the house then you are probably going to have more urgency to get the problem fixed, but you should look into getting a leaking hot water system fixed as soon as possible. You don’t want to end up with a worse problem than you started with, it can be costly.

plumb2

What could it be?

-Debris caught inside- sometimes small amounts of debris can get caught inside the hot water system, which can easily be flushed out.

-Faulty temperature relief valve- the function of the valve is to allow water to leak in small amounts to relieve pressure of the hot water inside the tank, but if is leaking more than normal, in large amounts, it’s not functioning correctly.

-If its leaking from the bottom it can be the element gasket- this is where all the electrical wiring. which means this should be dealt with very quickly, due to the mix of water and electrics. If the rubber gasket is old then it must be replaced by a qualified plumber.

-Temperature of the system is set too high- if you have the temperature set to too high then this will cause too much pressure on the system, so if you turn it down it should fix the problem. You are never suppose to turn the thermostat to the highest setting, remember that!

Why you don’t want to leave it too long…

If you notice that your hot water system is leaking then its not a good idea to leave it too long, depending on what the issue is, there can be varying costs.

-If you have a bad valve and leave it then the system could blow out completely and you’ll probably hear it if you’re in the house at the time. Leaving you with flooding. Replacing a faulty valve can be quite quick and easy if you catch it time, so its very important you take care of it immediately.

– Electrocution can occur if it’s the element gasket.

If you think this is all a bit much and just want to call someone who can figure it out without the safety issues, then call your local South Perth Plumber. Calling a plumber may be the most appropriate solution for those who don’t feel comfortable with plumbing issues, which is quite a lot of us.

Plumber South Perth- John Babic Plumbing & Gas

 

 

 

Remodeling Your Kitchen For Storage

May 17th, 2013

When you’re deciding to remodel your kitchen, to give it more style, but most of all practicability, then deep thought needs to go into layout. Most of us think about getting more out of our kitchen space, whether we have a large kitchen or small kitchen. We always seem to need more space, always.  If we look at what we current storage space we have and what really can be done, it’s actually quite surprising.

The island…

If you haven’t got a kitchen island but have the space for one, this could be a good investment. Not only is the kitchen island a stylish addition to any kitchen, but it can be modified to make the most out the space in your kitchen.  Getting a kitchen island in the middle of your kitchen means that you obviously have created more bench space, which can be both dangerous and complimenting.  If you’re desperate for space to place things, then this addition could be your answer. Although if you end up treating the space as a rubbish tip for bags, tissue boxes, or lunchboxes, it’s actually more of a burden. Most people find that once they get an island built, it looks wonderful, but they do end up abusing the space. So remember to have minimal on the island bench top itself, only place what’s needed, and with care.

With the island you can also add additional cabinets on the sides of the island, making the island hollow with plenty of storage space. It can look fantastic and act as a practical measure of storage.

kitchen island

Overhead cabinets…

Including storage space into you kitchen is very flexible, you have room to create and imagination you own designs, as long as you have the space. You also need to make sure you have right help, reliable professional help is a must. On major adjustment to your current kitchen could be the inclusion of overhead cabinets, on the walls surrounding your kitchen space, you may just have blank walls at the moment, but adding additional cupboards and cabinets will make a huge difference.

overhead cabniets

overhead cabinets

Some people might find adding too many cabinets and cupboards can ruin the design of your kitchen, but if you have the right ideas you can really make storage look fancy. If you need a kitchen that’s practical because you have a large family, then there’s no reason not to try getting creative with storage options.

 

Safety and Gutter Cleaning

May 17th, 2013

Most people are worried about plumbing or electrical issues in their household, but have you ever really put much thought into your gutters? Although we’re aware that we have gutters, that serve a purpose, yes, but new home owners perhaps forget that they need regular maintenance. It’s safe to assume that a young adult moving out of home won’t really consider the health of their gutters, they are something at the back of every persons mind. You must remember however, that gutter cleaning is a must! For every home owner!

So many people could tell you why we have gutters:

-To collect the water which spills off your roof when it rains, then to guide the water into spouts

However there are people that couldn’t tell how many times your suppose to clean your gutters and the best method to cleaning gutters.

gutter cleaning

Why should we clean our gutters?

Well, without cleaning your gutters on a regular basis then you are going to run into some costly problems.

-Cluttering and debris

-Leaking

-Cracks

Above are the symptoms that will first appear if you aren’t cleaning your gutters regularly, but the actual consequences of leaving these symptoms are much worse.

-Your gutters themselves can become too full, and break off your entire house

– Your house can implode due to saturation of water on soil around your home, caused by gutters which are clogged, and don’t naturally release the water into the correct down pipes.

Yes, you’re house could implode, which means that’s a lot of money to fix the problem. You’re going to re-build parts of your house, which is likely going to be an expensive job, and you’ll be left wondering why you didn’t just clean your gutters.

gutter cleaning 2

Safely cleaning your gutters…

When you decide to clean your gutters, you must make sure you are attempting it with a safe technique and method.

-Make sure you check out where the gutters are and the ground below, as uneven ground can be very dangerous.

-Make sure you are completing the gutter cleaning during calm weather conditions- wind can cause major issues, and having slippery surfaces from the rain can be disastrous.

-If it is a really high gutter then it’s best to have another person watching over you and helping with the ladder.

-Never take the chance of getting your hands dirty without wearing some gardening or safety gloves, there can be anything caught up in the gutters.

 

Although this all seems like common sense, many people still don’t follow simple safety measures because they believe its a simple job. Remember to regularly clean your gutters, or if you want an easy option then call your local gutter cleaning service. If you’re a Brisbane resident then try calling Gutter Cleaning Brisbane- Shane’s Gutter Cleaning Solutions.

 

 

Getting a house extension

April 22nd, 2013

Many people find after having a house for years that they could’ve used another room, or space.  In some instances this might mean you have a obnoxious teen that you want at the other end of the house, or you’ve just had your heart set on a sun room. Either way we all sometimes find we want another room, and the process of getting one can be made easier by some simple things to consider.

What to think about when getting a house extension…

How is the house currently set up?

-You need to really think about how your house is currently set up, in terms of it’s functionality.

-How is the plumbing and electricity connected?

Power points? Internet set up? (Although most people now have wireless internet, you still need think deeply about how this new room extension will affect internet workings).

-Where are all the bedrooms? Are you going to want a new room wall to wall with another room? Or next to the kitchen?

 

What sort of extension do you desire?

You can get a horizontal extension or a vertical extension?

-If you have a small but tall house, you are going to have to look at whether you want to add to the upstairs or whether you want to increase the bottom level. Sometimes you wont have a choice in this matter, if you have a small block, you’re going to have to build upwards.

-If you have the opposite problem, building horizontally can expand  a good width of your house, but you need to be prepared to lose the garden.

-Do you want your extension room to be a bedroom, kitchen, bathroom, or lounge room/sun room?

 

Other things to think about?

-Will you need some sort of council permit to build the new extension? Get this sorted before making all the big decisions about design.

-It is always going to be more expensive to maintain an additional room in the house, so think about ways you can cut costs, such as having more windows (to prevent needing to buy air conditioning or connect it).

-Safety is another very important factor to think about when getting an extension, you need to consider all possible risks the extension could involve.

So if you’re thinking about getting a house extension and not quite sure where to start, take some advice from a professional carpenter.

 

 

Re-designing a new bathroom…the challenges and ideas

April 19th, 2013

Are you sick of the boring layout and functionality of your current bathroom, or are considering replacing the shower but then deciding to re-model anyway? Perhaps your looking to add a 3 in 1 bathroom light or dimmer.  Either way moving around the bathroom layout is one tricky job, it takes a lot of planning and resources.  If you bathroom is really old then this is a good chance to get some more modern, environmentally friendly features to the bathroom, as well as giving you the scope to create a more modern look.

All the factors to think about

bath 3

Plumbing, Pipes and everything not so nice.

-When you are going to re-design a bathroom it’s not always going to involve the enjoyment of picking colours or patterns, there are a lot of practical issues that need to be addressed. You need only go to your local plumbing retailer to see that plumbing has changed over the years, and it’s common that you need to fix one thing, yet the plumbing piece you’re looking for is non existent now.

-So when you go to think about how exactly you want to design your bathroom, you need to look at your current plumbing systems and figure out what exactly is going to have to change in order to get that design your dreaming about.

bathroom 1

Planning the design.

-When planning the design of your new bathroom you need to look at what your current design is, both it’s layout and style. You need to think about what exactly you want to change about it (i.e functionality, look, colour) whether you just want a complete change, or just fancy a new sink. If you have a specific bathroom in a magazine and you thought “that’s it” then you really need to analyse every spec of detail.

-Get the drawing board out! This means get someone who can draw on board,  whether it be a friend, yourself or family member. Draw a general idea of what you like, in terms of colour, layout, textures. From the small sketch you do, you can show a professional designer or renovations expert, and be on your way to achieving your dream look.  Once there is a general outline, you have a better chance of getting the right help, and at the same time you will figure out what exactly is going to work, and what isn’t.

 

Research your resources!

-When you have that idea in your head, or magazine picture cut out, you will become a raging bull in order to get what you want. However you may find along the way that you cannot acquire all the elements you’d hoped, perhaps you cannot find that marble tile, or stylish glass shower door.  Some things will just be impossible to get your hands on, but more importantly it can cause a lot of unwanted stress.

-So what can you do to avoid too much anger and drama, do research before you get your heart set on certain features, look locally, or online to look at your options. Having back up resources is a very good idea, it will save you getting let down.

BathroomPlan

With these tips in mind you will now be mindful of some pitfalls that go with designing a new bathroom, maybe it’s put you off, or maybe it has inspired a large project for the family. If you need help with the renovations then you should look at calling Bathroom Renovations Newcastle-Impact Bathrooms, they can help with the nitty gritty.

 

Paint or Wallpaper: The Great Debate

March 20th, 2013

If you thinking of changing the walls in your bedroom, living room or study, it’s likely you’ve become a part of the great debate. Should I attempt the wallpaper job, or go with a standard paint job? If you’re doing it yourself, you’re probably already leaning towards paint, which is fair enough considering the nightmare stories. However what if you’ve found a wallpaper so amazing that you simply have to get it. Well here lies the crux of the problem.

These days you can find the most beautiful and elegant wallpaper designs, ones that scream your personality. In the end we really want our house to shine of our personality or family, and what we love. Lets have a look at both options in there bare facts:

Wallpaper:

Now wallpaper is always going to be the more delicate task in comparison to painting. Although it has a very large amount of benefits. One major benefit is that you can get many different patterns and pictures on wallpaper, something you can’t really do with paint.  This means there are endless possibilities for every space, meaning you can find fun kids designs and also plain elegant designs.

Major con: If you already have wallpaper on the walls, you need to get it off. Not so fun. Involved in this process is the right tools and equipment, so not to have parts of wallpaper stuck, with others removed.  You need either chemicals or physical equipment to pull this task off, leave it to those who have good skills at controlling anger.

Another con is that if moisture somehow gets into the walls, the paper may not withstand. However once wallpaper is on, it can change a room completely in the best of ways. A part from the water issues, it’s generally got a long life span, so choose carefully.

vintage_wallpaper4-Edit-2

Paint…

Paint is often what most people choose if they want simplicity and relative ease with the whole process. You can find a great variety of colours and gloss to match your room. In terms of making a mistake it’s a lot easier to fix up a paint mistake in comparison with vinyl wallpaper. In a way it can provide more family fun, if you want to get others involved.

Con: It’s less durable, and more messy. You have to be extremely careful while painting because you’re not dealing with solid material.  Most people are aware that if you choose to get involved in a painting job you’re going to end up covered in the stuff.  Although the worst part is if you get that paint on your floor, carpet or furniture, that’s nasty.

The other element that’s a bit restricting when choosing paint is the design, as mentioned above in the wallpaper paragraph. You can’t get too fancy with paint, unless you’re a trained painter or artist, even then it’s risky. You’re most likely going to end up with one or two colours.

Sponge Painted Wall

 

So what side of the debate are you on?

 

Either way sometimes you need a professional to finish the job, that way mistakes are less likely, and you less stressed about the whole situation.