The end of another year…boy time flies!

Although it will take some time to fully “recover” from the effects of this pandemic, we are getting slowly back to a new normal. It is hopeful to start celebrating with family and friends this holiday. Please know that the deadline to get painting done before Christmas is December 15th. So, if you procrastinated (we won’t judge) click “yes” below and we will have someone contact you right away!
Now, as we move into our slow season we’d like to offer you 10% Off winter interior painting. This discount is ONLY valid in the months of January, February & March (sorry we cannot offer in December or for existing contracts). When “life” happens…we are here to prepare, repair or refresh your home (or business). Thank you for being part of the Hands On Painters family of friends and customers!
So, from everyone at Hands On Painters, I’d like to say thank you for your continued loyalty and trust.
Jonathan Zawacki

Color for Difficult Spaces

An excerpt originally published in STIR®

Rarely is a room perfect. Low ceilings, soaring walls, odd angles, no windows, oddly configured corners – the list of common obstacles goes on. It’s sometimes easy to forget that spatial and functional challenges can often be solved with color. Here are some colorful suggestions to help you deal with pesky decorating dilemmas.
  • A room with no windows. Lighter colors – especially yellow-tinted paints and textiles – help reflect the light you’ll need in a room without windows. Painting the trim white and using white or light-colored furniture will also help throw the light around, as will reflective surfaces, such as glass-topped or mirrored furniture and mirrors hung on a wall. And to help “bring the outdoors in,” consider hanging some prints depicting nature. Landscapes and outdoor scenes that include windows and doorways lead the eye outward, creating the illusion of added space and light. And above all, make sure you install top-quality lighting.

  • A long, rectangular room. To counteract the bowling alley effect of a rectangular space, divide it into functional squares, which are actually easier for the human mind to integrate, says designer Mark McCauley, ASID. How to break up the space? “Use a large plant at the point of demarcation, large artwork, or a bookcase or curio,” he says. These items will divide the space into two halves, each having a separate function; for example, dining room for eating, living room for conversation and TV watching. If you’d rather have the room serve a single function, but you want to give it a more squared-off appearance, paint the two narrower end walls a darker color and the longer walls a light color. This will create the illusion of wider end walls and make the room appear more symmetrical.

  • Oddly shaped room. You can physically change the proportions of an oddly shaped space with built-ins. Not only can built-ins hide construction errors, but they can serve as interesting focal points while also providing extra storage. To draw attention from a sloping ceiling, uneven floor or a misplaced corner, place a colorful area rug in the center of the room to draw attention away from the periphery and create a central living space.

  • A low ceiling. Put down a darker floor covering, be it a wooden floor, carpet or tile. Paint the walls with a lighter color than the floor, or use light-colored wallpaper. If you can, use white paint for the ceiling, since this always gives the room maximum light and instantly draws the eyes upward. Hang wall art featuring strong vertical lines, which give the impression of height.

The Surprising Relationship Between Spices and Paint Color

By Amanda Lecky

If you’ve ever been inspired by the rich red of cayenne or the intense gold of curry while cooking, you’ve reacted to the natural pigments found in spices. In fact, it turns out that when it comes to color, spices and paint share an ancient history.

The chemical compounds that give spices their vibrant colors tend to fall into several categories, including chlorophylls, the greenish pigments that all plants contain; carotenoids, the red, orange or yellow pigments that give paprika, saffron and turmeric their brilliant hues; and flavonoids, the yellow pigment found in cassia cinnamon, for example.

Plants use these different natural pigments to help capture the energy of sunlight for photosynthesis and to attract insects and animals to aid pollination and seed dispersal. And for centuries, humans have also adopted natural pigments — many of them derived from the same spices they used for their native cuisine — to add vibrant organic color to their surroundings. The paint used in 50,000-year-old Persian cave art contained saffron, just as classic Persian “Jeweled Rice” does. And the same turmeric cooked into a Tibetan curry also gave Buddhist monks’ robes their golden hue.

Today’s synthetic pigments have made it easier to surround ourselves with these earthy hues — and tap into our instinctual appetites for color.

“Spice tones create in us a very visceral connection to color. They’re rooted and anchored, they come from the soil — which is very comforting,” says Sue Wadden, Director of Color Marketing for Sherwin-Williams. “Of course, if they’re bright — like a cayenne-pepper red — these colors can be stimulating, so you have to decide what kind of effect you want when you’re deciding where to use them.”



EPA Lead Certified – Did You Know?

Did you know, Federal law requires all contractors performing renovation, repair or painting projects that disturb lead-based paint in homes, child-care facilities or schools built prior to 1978 to be certified and to follow specific work practices to prevent lead contamination?

Hands On Painters has completed the certification process and has been trained by an EPA-accredited national training firm. Team members are trained in; Regulations, Prep Work, Dust Containment, Clean-Up, Record Keeping, & Job Site Supervision

If you have a building that was built before 1978, make sure your contractor/painter is EPA certificated!

Q & A; Can you apply latex paint over oil-based paint?

The general answer is yes. However, it is vital that the surface be properly prepared. Generally, sand the surface until it’s no longer slick. Then wipe the surface down with a cloth and apply one to two coats of primer and let dry before applying two coats of paint. If the surface may have been coated prior to 1978, please consider the following lead hazard cautionary statement:Warning! Removal of old paint by sanding, scraping or other means may generate dust or fumes that contain lead. Exposure to lead dust or fumes may cause brain damage or other adverse health effects, especially in children or pregnant women. Controlling exposure to lead or other hazardous substances requires the use of proper protective equipment, such as a properly fitted respirator (NIOSH approved) and proper containment and cleanup. For more information, call (in the U.S.) the National Lead Information Center at 1-800-424-LEAD or contact your local health authority.

Best Bedroom Blues

Our bedrooms should be a space for sanctuary. Neutral and versatile, blue paint can act as a bold accent, or provide the perfect backdrop to give you a sleepy, sweet sanctuary.

THE BOLD & BEAUTIFUL – “Navy” may be a dark paint color, but pair it with bright decor and accents to create a balancing contrast. Create a focal point for your bed by using navy on a geometric accent wall. The dimensional lines will naturally draw the eye toward the center of your bed.

BORING BEDROOM NO MORE – Say goodbye to boring bedroom walls with a splash of bold color. Try combining bright hues like Sherwin-William’s “Lagoon” with natural textures and white accent colors to give your space an uplifting look that feels carefree and coastal.

SAIL AWAY TO SLEEP – Try a nautical-inspired hue to bring the calming vibes of the beach to your space. Sherwin-William’s “Deep Sea Dive” is a jewel tone that can be balanced with warm-colored accents. As a backdrop this bold is the perfect way to highlight your most beloved belongings.

Ready to dive into a blue bedroom refresh? Call us at 410-242-1737!

Except from Sherwin-Williams

Prepare Your Home for Selling

Everyone’s timeline for selling their house looks different. Whether you’re looking for more square footage or embracing the minimalist draw of downsizing, we’re sharing our tips to sell your home, so you’ll make the most of your listing no matter where you are in the process.


Sometimes the right house pops up when you weren’t even looking – the good news is you don’t have to pass on your dream home just because you weren’t planning on selling. If your timeline is tight, get down to basics with a little cleaning and light painting. Start by fixing any holes on your walls from hanging decor. Once repairs are taken care of, give your trim a fresh coat of paint to make your rooms look sharper and more defined.

BONUS TIP: Painting your front door is another quick project that goes a long way. 


If you have a few months before selling, start by clearing out clutter. Now is the perfect time to go through the things that’ll make the move with you and say adios to the things that won’t. Not only does getting rid of extra decor and dust collectors make it easier on your move, but it also gives you more room to stage your space and make some cosmetic changes.

Giving your space a new coat of color is a huge bonus for you and potential buyers. Painting walls in a new hue can increase your home’s value while attracting buyers with that shiny, move-in-ready appeal. If you’re not sure which color to use, sticking with neutrals will always be a crowd-pleaser when it comes to selling.


While these tips to sell your home are a great place to get started, you might not be ready to leave your abode until a few years – this means you’ll have even more time to think about the bigger picture. Much like a newly painted space stands out, a renovated room can be just as enticing to potential buyers.

Make a list of the spaces around your home that could use a little sprucing. Whether it’s updating a half-bath with new fixtures or adding new hardware to kitchen cabinets, you can prioritize little updates here and there that go a long way in increasing the value of your home.

Regardless of when you sell your home, there’s always one golden rule to keep in mind – show your exterior some love! A picture-perfect space that feels move-in ready inside and out is a big draw for making potential buyers feel right at home.


Choosing Stain Colors

Staining can be colorful (and easy). It doesn’t take a doctorate in color theory to work with stain colors. Start with the basics like opacity and stain palettes.

Determining your proper opacity is crucial in the staining process as opacity can range from lightly pigmented to total coverage. Opacity options include solid and semi-transparent, all of which enhance and protect any porch, deck, trim or siding as well as concrete driveways and walkways.

Color mixing and matching. Discover the world of stain colors and let the natural wood shine through, match grain colors or cover unsightly wood blemishes.

  • Stain is available in several pre-mixed colors; a great way to bring colorless areas to life.


Color Theory

Learning the basic “language of color” will help you achieve your decorating goals.


Hue identifies the general family of a color, such as red, yellow, blue or green. The traditional color wheel is made up of twelve color families: red, red-orange, orange, yellow-orange, yellow, yellow-green, green, blue-green, blue, red-violet, violet and blue-violet.

Color Wheel

Colors on the opposite side of the wheel from each other are called complementary colors. In combination, these create striking contrasts. For less contrast, choose colors next to each other on the color wheel, which are called analogous colors. Choosing colors of different tints within one color family creates a monochromatic color scheme.

Warm or Cool?

Different colors in the same family may be described as being “warm” or “cool.” Colors with yellow undertones will seem warmer, while the same color with blue or red undertones will appear cool. Cool colors – blue, green, violet – invite relaxation and thought. Warm colors – red, orange, yellow – encourage conversation and play. Color experts suggest using both warm and cool colors in rooms where you desire balance and variety.


Value describes how light or dark a specific color may be. On Sherwin-Williams color strips, lighter values are at the top, mid-tone values are in the middle and darker values are at the bottom. When you combine colors from a single color strip, you’re creating a monochromatic color scheme – perfect for creating a sophisticated, spacious look in a single room.


Seeing Green

When you think of March, you think of green! Spring is coming and a few warm days quickly reveals green shoots springing up from the brown earth. Green is a color of expectation, promotes tranquility and reminds us of nature. And don’t forget to wear your green on St. Patrick’s Day—or you risk getting pinched!

When you’re thinking about how to work green colors in your home, consider the feeling you want to create in the space. Do you want your family room to give people a burst of energy? Or do you want it to feel more peaceful and relaxed? Figuring this out first will help guide you through the many choices of the shades of green.

You also want to think about how much color you want to bring into a space. Both, pastel greens & dark rich greens, can work well as whole room colors. However, brighter shades of green, work better for an accent wall. One thing to keep in mind is how the natural lighting in the room affects the green paint hues. Typically, brighter greens can affect the appearance of your skin tone. So, you may not want to paint your make-up area or bathroom lime green.

As March greens up, remember you may just find your next room color at the end of the rainbow!