This $5 Paint Project is So Quick and Easy, But the Payoff Is Huge

published May 14, 2022
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Small sample-sized containers of pink and green paint, with a brush resting on the pink can
Credit: Air Images/Shutterstock

When it comes to home transformations, it’s hard to beat the power of paint. A cold-feeling room can get a cozy upgrade with a couple coats of dark paint, or a dated-looking space can get a fresh and modern update with just the right shade of white.

But you don’t have to stick to giant whole-room — or even whole-wall — projects to create a big impact. You’ve seen arches and other accents before, but there might be one spot in your home you’re overlooking that’s a natural fit for a little paint-over: open doorways. Whether it’s arched or angular, a doorway provides a canvas that’s just the right size for a teeny but transformative project.

For inspiration, take a look at this painted archway from homeowner Megan Housekeeper’s kitschy mid-century living room. In this space, the walls are a neutral shade of creamy white — perfect for showcasing all of Housekeeper’s colorful and statement-making vintage finds. But the arched pass-through between the living areas was calling for something with a little more spunk.

All it took to liven up the small area was a little bit of paint in a bright orange color that works with the decor of both spaces. You can pull off this project yourself with any color of your choice — and since there’s not much surface to cover, you can get away with buying no more than a sample pot of paint, which usually runs for under $10.

For extra-crisp lines, tape off the exterior of the arch before painting the edges the same color as the surrounding wall; this will help prevent any bleed-through when you follow up with a couple coats of your accent color. If you’ve got a steady hand, you can also use a 2-inch angled paint brush to cut in at the edges before filling in.

If your walls are white, try a bright color like Housekeeper did, or a dark color for a little more drama. Already painted them a non-white color? Try a deeper shade of the same hue, a contrasting color, or go totally unique with an unexpected but complementary color. Whatever you choose, you’ll be able to turn a pass-through area into a can’t-miss highlight — and all for under $10 and an hour or two of work.

This post was originally published on Apartment Therapy. Read it here: This $5 Paint Project Barely Takes Any Time or Effort, but the Payoff is Huge