Checkered Ceiling Tutorial

I am finally getting around to sharing the tutorial for my checkered ceiling. I posted it over at Centsational Girl a week or so ago but thought I would post it here too.

The first thing you need to do is measure your ceiling. Once you have your measurements you can sit down and figure out how big each square needs to be. Uggg. I hate math so this was the least fun part of the whole process BUT probably the most important. Measure, measure, measure.

Then get a laser level that will stick to your ceiling. Mine uses adhesive strips. This whole projects is easier if you have a helper so grab a willing assistant too :) After you make marks along the perimeter, then use the laser level to line up the marks on either end. My husband and I use a long piece of molding as our straight edge to trace the laser line across the ceiling. Once you trace all the lines going one direction, then trace them going the opposite way to create your squares. I guess it depends on the size of your ceiling but this really didn’t take as much time as it sounds like it would.

I marked every other square with an X to show which ones would be painted the darker green.

When I taped, I didn’t cover the line up. This way it would get painted. I figured I would have less pencil lines to clean up when all was said and done. P.S. Magic Eraser will get pencil off really well.

This is the part I kind of dread telling you. You will need to tape twice. I am sure there are other ways I could have approached this project, but I knew that doing it this way would create really straight, clean lines. You will tape so that every other row will be painted. You can’t tape all of it at the same time because you have to tape outside of the line for one row which puts the tape inside the next row. Can you see how some of the square look smaller? That is why.

My secret to getting beautiful lines when painting stripes or squares is this step right here. Use the base paint to seal the tape. My ceilings are mega textured. Even with good quality painters tape you would get some leaks. This way, any leaks are the same color as the ceiling and you don’t notice them at all. I know it adds one more step but it is totally worth it. You wouldn’t want to have gone to all this trouble so far only to have fuzzy lines.

I brush (or roll) towards the tape.

I wish this picture was even more clear so you could see exactly how clean those lines are.

Here it is with half of the squares painted. Sorry for the bad picture quality. I have 4 little boys so I have to work at night :) Darn flash.

Next you need to rip off the tape. I take the tape off while the paint is still wet. Otherwise you may have it rip the paint off as well. Go slow.

Wait for the paint to dry for at least 24 hours. You will be taping over the newly painted squares and you don’t want to risk the paint coming off.

And there you have it! It was probably more work than my stenciled ceiling in my bedroom, but I personally think it was worth it. I have had this on my to do list for over 6 years! I am happy it is finally done and I get to enjoy it everyday.

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  1. Heart and Haven says

    Great job! I don’t think I’d have the patience for that project. I hate painting over my head as it is…but with all that detail work, yikes!

  2. says

    Love the tip about painting again with the base coat after taping. You did such an amazing job with this. Love how it turned out. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Debora Cadene says

    Wow!! Your ceiling looks amazing, but I have to tell you, the first thing I thought when I saw it was, “are you out of your mind? Painting the roof is worth it after all is said and done, and its really not one of my favourite things to do, but you have taken it to a whole new level. Good job for sure.