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Preventing “Holidaying” When Painting Walls

Tips to Ensure a Flawless Paint Job

While many home DIY tasks like painting walls can be accomplished with minimal training or experience, mistakes do happen. In order to prevent holidaying when painting you must stay focused and attentive. “Holidaying” is a term that often crops up in the world of painting.  It’s a somewhat whimsical way of describing those sneaky missed spots. These can catch you by surprise, especially in rooms with insufficient lighting. Typically found around edges and areas where brushes are used, holidaying can be a minor setback if spotted early. Fortunately, it’s possible to prevent this phenomenon altogether by incorporating a few smart practices.

Understanding the Origin of "Holidaying"

In the realm of painters’ jargon, “holidaying” carries a comical undertone, implying that you might have momentarily gone on vacation and overlooked a spot. Regardless of its origin, holidaying is a term painters don’t take lightly—it signifies an unfinished job.

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Minimizing the Risk of "Holidaying"

To effectively ward off holidaying mishaps, consider these strategies:

Optimize Lighting

Ensure ample natural light during daytime tasks, and introduce bright artificial lights if working at night. Proper illumination can reveal potential missed areas and help you achieve consistent coverage.

Choose the Right Roller Cover

Selecting an appropriate nap roller cover for the task at hand is essential. In some cases, opting for a longer nap roller cover can help prevent holidaying.

Properly Saturate the Roller

Before painting, allow the roller to soak up the paint by letting it sit in the paint-filled roller pan for at least two minutes. This ensures even paint distribution and reduces the risk of missed spots.

Take Your Time

Avoid rushing through the process. Apply two to three coats of paint to each section, ensuring comprehensive coverage and minimizing the chances of skipping.

Apply Paint Generously & Firmly

Be generous and consistent in your paint application. After each pass, use the open end of the roller to lay off the paint, moving away from the finished area. This technique helps prevent unsightly track marks.

Focus on Critical Areas

Pay close attention to corners and the spaces between ceilings and walls—these are common areas where holidaying tends to occur.

Inspect as You Go

Regularly inspect your work using a portable light source. This allows you to identify streaks or missed spots while the paint is still drying, making corrections easier.


“Holidaying” might be a light-hearted term, but it’s a phenomenon that can undermine the quality of your painting project. By employing proper lighting, careful paint application, and diligent inspection, you can effectively prevent this issue and ensure a flawless, professional-looking finish. Remember, the key to a successful painting endeavor lies in patience, attention to detail, and a commitment to achieving the best results possible.

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