Progress has been a bit slow on the hallway as of late, so I really needed to do something to give myself a boost. Little effort for maximum benefit.
The stairs really needed painting as the old yellow and mustard coloured paint look was really starting to get tired! But first a little prep...
There were some big old gaps between the steps and the steps had taken a battering with the amount of staples and nails that had been put in them over the years.
So, I started by filling them in. Some of them were really quite large so I started with Gripfill, hoping that might do the trick. Some also needed some stripwood to fill the gap as it was that large.
Unfortunately, even in areas with a small amount of filler, it shrunk quite a lot on drying and it all cracked up.
Round 2 of filling.
I went back to my trusty deep gap filler from Toolstation.
There was one particular hole which wouldn't retain any filler. So I got a little crafty. I cut out a small section of foil from a foil tray (narrow enough to just be able to fit through the hole) and pierced a small hole in the middle. I then got a pierce of string and knotted it underneath.
[It just happens there was a big hole in one of the stairs, and one hole in the floorboards on the landing - the following photos are of the landing, but I used the same technique for the stairs]
I then put some gripfill on the upper side of the foil (the side with the longest length of string), and carefully poked it through the hole.
Once I had poked it through, I used the string to gently pull the foil up and make contact with the underside of the floorboard. I used a piece of tape to secure the string just whilst it dried, and then added a little more gripfill to try and fill the gap a little bit to start with.
Once dried, the string can be cut. The hole on the landing I topped up with wood filler as this would be stained to match the floor, but the hole on the stairs, I filled with deep gap filler as this would be painted.
I intended to use Johnstones Acrylic Eggshell Paint in Brilliant White as it claims to stay white and not yellow over time. I will see how it lives up to those claims in time. But to use this product it advises you use Johnstones Joncryl Acrylic Primer. A bit of a sand of all my filler first and I was good to go.
What a difference a bit of paint makes! I also LOVE the contrast between the white and the wall colour. Yum!
I also discovered the joys of masking tape, specifically yellow Frogtape (for sensitive surfaces). It has paint block technology to give a really clean edge. I'd never really had much success with masking tape and it always bled paint underneath. Confession - I always figured it was for people without any skills to paint a straight line. That is until now! I LOVE it!
It saves so much time. Rather than faffing about - just tape on, paint (not even taking any particular care), tape off. Done. I'm sold.
That's only the primer on the steps, I still need to prep and paint all the spindles and banister on the stairs (a job I'm putting off as I know it will take ages!), as well as properly paint the steps with the top coat, but progress is progress nonetheless, and I'm chuffed.