How to Paint a Bedroom: 4 Simple Steps

One of the easiest and most rewarding DIY projects is painting a room.  A fresh coat of paint in a bold, new color not only makes a room more visually appealing and can change the entire feel and mood of the room.  Inexpensive and easy to do for even the most novice of home improvement DIYers, interior painting is a great way to add richness and depth to a room without expending a lot of time and effort on design.  In fact, when considering an update to any room, painting walls should be your first consideration. 

A great way to transform a drab bedroom is to add a bold color to just one wall, creating an accent wall.  If you’ve recently purchased a custom-made piece of sustainable furniture such as the Orchestrator California King bed, it may be time to update the wall color so that the crushed velvet headboard makes an even more dramatic statement in the space.  If you’ve purchased a newly constructed home, chances are you are living in a world of “builder’s beige,” and painting your bedroom can provide an escape from the mundane color that currently flows throughout the house.  If you’ve simply got some extra time on your hands (and this year, who doesn’t), painting your bedroom can also provide a much-needed reprieve from the monotony of days spent socially distancing inside your home. 

People generally have two opinions about painting and they are vastly different:  Group one says painting will be a breeze, and group two says it’s going to be a nightmare.  We at Whom find it’s somewhere in the middle; although it takes a little prep work and more time than you probably expect, you can avoid major snafus with just a little planning, and turn out a really nice product that can change an ordinary bedroom into a virtual sanctuary.  As such, we have four simple steps to help you plan, prep, paint, and enjoy your bedroom. 


<h3>Planning to Paint</h3>

The old adage is true: fail to plan, plan to fail.  Painting your bedroom isn’t something you want to rush right into.  Planning is more than just picking a color you think will look nice and showing up with a bucket and brush.  Here are three steps to plan the color and amount of paint you will need.

  1.     Color options.  You will likely build your color options based on the furnishings already in your bedroom.  Whether you are coordinating your paint color to a unique piece of artwork, or using a neutral shade as a backdrop for an oversized headboard, it’s important to collect several samples in the shade family you like to make sure you pick the perfect match.  We suggest picking at least three samples from the same color and shade family to decide upon. 
  2.     Space. You aren’t limited to four walls when you paint your bedroom.  Although you can certainly paint them all the same color, consider whether your room would look better with an accent wall, or if the molding would look fresh with new paint, too.   Beyond the four walls, you can also try different painting techniques, like rag-rolling or sponge-painting.  These different methods give a completely different look to a room and stand alone as works of art that are eye-catching and easy to create. 
  3.     Swatch test.  Once you’ve collected your paint shade samples and have determined how you’d like to paint your bedroom, the next step is to apply a small stroke of each sample to the wall so you can compare and decide which looks best “in real life.”  Leave the swatches on the wall for a few days; chances are one of them will stand out as the perfect shade, and you can confidently purchase that color to paint your walls.  The store salesperson can help you determine how much paint will be needed, but you’ll need to give them information about the size of the walls you are painting.    

Preparing to Paint

Possibly everyone’s the least favorite part of painting a bedroom is the prep work, but to get the most professional-looking finished product, it is absolutely essential to master painting preparation techniques.  Here are four ways to prepare your bedroom for painting. 

  1.     Remove and/or cover your furniture. If possible, you’ll want to remove as much furniture as you can from your room prior to painting.  If you cannot remove your furniture, you’ll need to cover it with plastic wrap tarps, plastic sheeting, or other material you don’t mind getting paint on.  Make sure the tarps and furniture coverings cover the furniture all the way past the legs. If you can't remove the furniture, scoot it as far away from the walls as you can to reduce unwanted spackling and make paint drips less terrifying.
  2.     Fix imperfections on the wall. If there are holes in the wall or other imperfections, you can use caulk to repair them prior to painting.  Make sure you fill them all the way, and don't forget, sanding them down ensures a smooth surface.
  3.     Tape it up. Tape all electrical outlet covers (or just remove them), cable television outlets, light switch covers, and HVAC registers.  Use painter’s tape or masking tape to carefully tape around baseboards, crown molding, and door frames.  Your goal for taping is to cover everything you do not want painted.  If you’ve decided to paint a patterned wall, now is the time to tape for that pattern as well. 
  4.     Spread a drop cloth.  This is an often overlooked step and super important.  Invest in a large drop cloth to cover your flooring prior to painting.  No matter how meticulous and careful you are, you will inevitably get paint splatters on your flooring if you don't take the time to cover the floor up.  It can be a nightmare trying to remove it, and it can be avoided altogether by simply using a drop cloth. 

Paint Your Room

This is the part that generally takes the least amount of time!  Open the paint can with a putty knife, screwdriver, or preferably, an actual paint can opener, and carefully pour your paint into a paint tray, making sure to wipe excess paint so it doesn't drip even onto the drop cloth. Generally, a paint roller is the most efficient to paint an entire room, but a paintbrush or angled brush among your paint supplies can also come in handy for tackling tight corners and around window frames. 

However, painting in these tight spaces will actually come last--for now, focus on laying down a first coat that doesn't stretch all the way to the corners or edges of the walls just yet, leaving a few inches of buffer space. 

Once you have covered this space with one coat of paint, let the paint dry two to four hours. 

Once the first layer of paint is dry you can determine if you need a second coat.  You need a second coat if you can see the original wall color through your first coat of paint.  Once you have applied your second coat and allowed that to dry, you will need to “cut in.”  Cutting in is the process by which you apply your paint in the hard to reach areas like corners and around the crease where the ceiling meets the wall.  Take your time and be patient and this process will go a lot smoother and you can avoid getting paint where it shouldn't go. 

Clean Up and Enjoy Your Hard Work

Once you have completed painting and have allowed the paint to dry for twenty-four hours (or longer according to the paint manufacturer’s instructions), you can carefully remove your painter’s tape, drop cloths, and tarps.  Be especially careful when removing your painter’s tape, as it can pull paint off if it is removed too quickly. 

Replace any furniture or artwork that you removed from your room, remembering that your walls are freshly painted and it is extremely important to move slowly so you don’t scratch them up.

Your bedroom refresh is now complete.  Sit back and enjoy your hard work!


Painting your bedroom is a great way to change its design, update it, and add style without spending a lot of money or time.  You can get a great look by deciding how you want to add color to your bedroom (basing it around a mood, piece of art, furniture, etc.), and what walls you would like to color.  Preparing for your painting project is extremely important, and will prevent accidents like paint splatter on the floor or baseboards. Take just a little extra time to plan and you'll have a new DIY masterpiece in no time!