PREP IS KEY
Before you even think about paint, prep your surface. First scrub your tiles with sugar soap to remove dirt and grime. Then go in with some coarse 80-100 grit sandpaper.
If you have shiny tiles then sanding is a must, this will create a key to help your paint grip to the surface. Prep work is the backbone of durability, if you skip this step, you're more likely to see your hard work chip and peel.
Don’t just slap any old paint on! Use a multi-purpose primer, Zinsser is a firm favourite across the board. If you're thinking about skipping this step to save pennies, see it as an investment, you can use multi-surface primer for all kinds of DIY projects. Always handy to have a tin tucked away for a rainy day.
ITS ALL ABOUT THE BASE
A brush or roller will do the trick, but don’t apply too thick. You don’t want to see any brush marks!
2-3 thin coats is always better than one thick coat for maximum durabilty. If you do get any bits or brush marks in the paint before it dries you can lightly sand with a fine grit paper in between coats to keep the surface lump free and as smooth as a baby’s bum!
TIME TO STENCIL
We always recommend using 2 stencils for any tile projects. This is a big time saver. All of our tile stencils have a 2 pack buying option.
Start with your whole tiles across the middle of your floor first, save the edges and awkward areas for last. Stencil every other tile, in a checkerboard pattern, to speed things up.
The number one mistake most people make when stenciling for the first time is using way too much paint, this leads to bleeding under the stencil, and no one wants fuzzy lines! It’s surprising how little paint you actually need. So we always recommend having a practice on some scrap card first.
Our stencils are nice and flexible so you can bend them easily to fit flush against most edges.
However, in most cases, you will need to cut your stencil at some point. This is where your 2nd stencil comes in handy again!
Try and bend your stencils wherever you can, and leave any final cuts for the very end.
SEAL THE DEAL
Use a polyurethane floor varnish. There are lots of brands out there on the market, but Polyvine is a customer favourite.
We recommend using a roller for this step, to get a nice smooth finish.
For high traffic areas, such as floors, you're best applying at least 3 coats.
MAKE IT LAST
Don’t forget, whatever products you use, follow the manufacturer instructions to the letter! Pay attention to drying times, curing times, ideal temperatures etc.
This is key to maximising on durability.
But like any painted surface you will get wear and tear over time, some maintenance may be required, so keep your stencil just in case.