How to Paint a Wall Two Different Colors

picture with a wall with 2 tone

Giving different rooms in your home a personalized look is easier than you might think. Typically, people believe that they can’t paint the room more than one color because it is hard to accomplish, let alone look good when you are done. Well, get ready for your perspective of two-toned painting to change!

Using two different colors on one wall, divided either horizontally or by vertical stripes, creates visual interest. This technique allows for creativity, and even neutral colors can be made more interesting by using different shades of the same hue.

Here are five easy steps to follow to get an attractive, two-toned paint job, brought to you by your premier Painters Rockford IL!

Step One: Pick your colors

While this might seem easy, for some, this is the most challenging step in the whole process. Put some thought into what color scheme you’d like to use on your walls.

Monochromatic color schemes use different shades of the same hue. This method has a subdued effect, while also standing out more than using just one color. This is a safe option to take, because colors from the same color family will always look good together.

Analogous colors are colors that are related, or next to each other on the color wheel. Usually, one color is dominant, while the other color is used to enrich the effect. Examples of analogous colors include greens and blues, or oranges and reds.

The most obvious color scheme is using complementary colors. This method pulls two colors that contrast each other without clashing. These are colors that complement each other, and are found opposite each other on the color wheel. When using the complementary color scheme, it is important to remember that one color needs to be the dominant color.

Colors can either make a space feel larger than it is, or they can make a space feel smaller and cozier. Lighter and brighter colors give the illusion of space, while darker colors give the illusion of a smaller area. When doing two-tone divided horizontally, it generally works better to use the darker color on the bottom portion of the wall.

Not only do you need to decide what color scheme you want to use, but you also have to consider how your color choices might look in your room. Paint samples on your walls, or tape up swatches to see how they will look in the space. Consider the furnishings and accessories that will be in the room to find paint colors that will not clash with furniture colors and patterns.


Step Two: Prepare the room

Preparing the room prior to painting will help to ensure that your paint job looks flawless when finished. Remove all furniture from the room if possible, or, if not, move it to the center, away from the walls. If you are leaving furniture in the room, make sure it is fully covered to protect it. Cover the floors with a drop cloth or tarp, and secure with painter’s tape. Remove all light fixtures, window coverings, light switch covers, and outlet covers. For the things that you can’t remove, mask them off with painter’s tape to protect them from getting painted.

It is important to wash your walls, and repair holes prior to applying your first coat of paint. This is important because paint doesn’t adhere to dirt or damaged areas of the wall. Allow time for the walls to dry after washing or repairing holes.


Step Three: Mask the wall

To achieve the two-toned effect, you will need to have some sort of visual dividing line between the two different colors. If you don’t have molding or any other sort of permanent feature that creates the divide for you, you can easily create a distinct line by using painter’s tape.

Use a level or a yard stick to ensure that you are getting a straight line when applying your tape to the wall. Ideally, the middle of the wall horizontally (36 – 40 inches) is an aesthetically pleasing location for a horizontal divide. Measure up and make a mark, using a pencil. Hold your yardstick with one hand while placing your level against your mark. Adjust your level until your guide is level, and trace a line with a pencil. Continue this process across the wall. Place painters tape along your pencil lines when completed. Remember, if you started from the bottom of the wall, you’ll want to place the tape above your pencil mark.

Once you have the tape applied to the wall, use your fingernail or the dull edge of a knife and go along the edge of the tape. This will keep the color from going under the tape and bleeding onto the other color.


Step Four: Paint!

Now that all of the prep work is done, you are ready to start painting! Starting from the top of the first section, go down in a “W” shape. Once you have reached the bottom, refill your brush with paint, and start from the top again, working to fill in the “W” shape. This process will ensure that all of the paint has been applied in the same direction, providing even coverage across the whole wall. An angled brush is ideal for painting in corners, and other areas where attention to detail and smaller strokes are required. Allow paint to dry the recommended drying times before applying additional coats.

Once you have completed painting your first color, carefully remove the painters tape at a 45-degree angle. Let the paint fully dry before painting the second color. Once you have let the paint completely dry, apply painters tape on the other side of the line, following the same technique that you used the first round. Once the paint is back in place, you are ready to begin painting the second color! Paint just like you did for the first color, in a “W” shape, and use an angled brush for corners and other details.


Step Five: Clean up

Congratulations! You’ve almost finished painting. You are now on the last step before you can sit back and enjoy all your hard work. Now, replace all lids on paint cans, and pick up drop cloths. Clean all brushes and other tools that were used with warm, soppy water. Wash your brushes and rollers until the water runs clear, and then hang them up to dry. Carefully pick up drop cloths, and be extra careful to not spread around any paint that might have been spilt on the cloths. Finally, remove the last of the painter’s tape at a 45-degree angle.


Now that you are done, step back and admire your handiwork! For those of you who are still too timid to try doing a two-tone paint job yourself, painters Rockford IL are professionals who can get you the perfect two-toned paint job guaranteed.  Contact us today!

How to Fix a Leaking Roof


A leaking roof is never a good thing. It can be a sign of something more serious, and can lead to substantial damage if not taken care of promptly. While most leaks can be patched with a few new shingles and a couple hours of your time, other leaks require roofing contractors Naperville IL to completely replace your roof. For easy fixes, here is a quick guide to help you through the process.

Step 1: Locate the source of the leak

This is not always an easy task. Before repair work can be performed, you’ll need to know where the leak is coming from. Where the water is dripping from inside your home is not always the same location as where the leak is. It is important to find the leak and get it repaired, before your whole roof suffers extreme damage.

The easiest way to locate a leak works if you have an attic. Go into the attic on a rainy day. The leaking water will reflect light, so be sure to take a flashlight along with you. Locate the source of the water, and mark the spot. On a nice day, have a helper go in the attic and tap on the mark while you are on the roof.

Step 2: Look for damaged shingles

Once you have located the source of the leak, look for damaged, curled, or missing shingles near where the water is getting in. If there are shingles that are curled back, use a blow dryer (do not use a torch or open flame) to soften the shingle. Reattach the curled shingles with asphalt roof cement or compound around the edges. Use a generous amount to prevent the shingles from curling up again.

Step 3: Replace any damaged or missing shingles

If you notice that you are able to lift your shingles with little effort, or that they break and crumble easily, they need to be replaced. Simply remove the old shingle by lifting up around the edges, and removing the roofing nails that are holding it in place. Scrape the area below where the shingle had been to remove any leftover roofing cement or nails. With the prep work done, you are ready to install new shingles. Slightly round the back corners of the new shingles using a utility knife, and then slide the shingle into place. Once in the right place, use large roofing nails in the upper corners to hold the shingle in place. Cover the nail heads with roofing cement.

Fixing a leaking roof is easier and a lot more cost effective than replacing the whole roof. But if you find that your roof is beyond a simple DIY roof repair, your friendly roofing contractors Naperville IL are willing to step in and do the job for you!

How to Change a Light Fixture

An affordable fix that can have a dramatic change around the house is to update old or broken light fixtures. This easy project is simple enough to do that, as long as you have a few simple tools and a ladder, you can effortlessly accomplish it. From the not-so-handy homeowner to the general contractor Dixon IL, this is a project that can be done quickly by anyone!

Step 1: Make sure the power is turned off

Find the breaker that is connected to the room where you will be working, usually located in your electrical panel. Switch the breaker off, so that there is no more power going to that room.

Step 2: Remove old fixture

Climb a ladder so that you can reach the fixture without any trouble. Carefully remove the old cover, and remove the old wire connectors. Untwist the fixture wires from the installed wires. Remove any other elements from the old fixture that are left.

Step 3: Secure electrical box

Once the old fixture has been removed, check to see if the electrical box is securely attached. If not, tighten the screws holding it in place, being careful not to over-tighten them. The electrical box must be securely mounted to the building structure, in order to support the weight of the light fixture. The box must be grounded, or attached to a grounded wire in the ceiling. If you have any concerns about your existing electrical box, purchase and install a new one prior to installing your new light fixture.

Step 4: Connect wires

When installing a new fixture, be sure to keep all instructions that come with the fixture. Read the manufacturer’s instructions when it comes to matching the wires on your fixtures to the wires already installed in your home.

Generally speaking, black wires connect to black, and white wires connect to white. Grounding wires are typically green, and connect to a grounding screw on a grounding bar. Using a wire stripper, carefully remove the protective layer of the wire from your new fixture. Wrap the newly exposed wire to the bare section of the corresponding wires in the electrical box, and screw a wire connector over the two wires. Finally, connect the grounding wire.

Step 5: Secure base

Once all the wires have been connected, carefully fold the wires back up into the electrical box. Using the included hardware, attach the base or canopy of your fixture to the electrical box. If you are working on replacing a fixture on a high ceiling, having another set of hands nearby could be beneficial.

Step 6: Install lightbulbs

Each light fixture has recommended lightbulbs and wattages to use for maximum efficiency. Install the recommended bulbs, upgrading to more efficient LED bulbs if possible. Once the lightbulbs have been installed, turn the breaker in your electrical panel back on. With the power back on, switch on your light switch to the fixture to check and make sure everything is working.

Step 7: Install cover

Now that everything is installed and working properly, attach any trim pieces and the cover to your light fixture. If your fixture is a pendant or hangs by a chain, make any necessary adjustments to the length.

If this seems a little overwhelming, general contractor Dixon IL can assist in changing out light fixtures for those who are a little timid when it comes to playing with electricity, or aren’t equipped with a tall enough ladder! Contact us today. We are happy to help!