Right tools make painting a cinch

Why it pays to spend a little more on quality

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One of the quickest and easiest home makeovers you can do is to apply a fresh coat of paint to walls or woodwork. Painting lets you add color and a clean new look to any room, and it's also one of the most common and straightforward projects for the do-it-yourselfer to undertake. With any home-improvement project, good results with a minimum amount of hassle results from having the proper tools, and painting is certainly no different. Luckily, you can get a basic set of professional-quality painting tools for very little money, and properly cared for, they'll last a lifetime. Brushes: There are hundreds of brushes available, but for the average do-it-yourself painter working with latex (water-thinned) paint, a set of two is all you need -- a 1 1/2-inch-wide brush for trim, and a 3-inch brush for larger areas. A polyester/nylon blend is a good choice for latex, with either a straight or angled set of bristles, depending on your personal preference. For oil-based paints, varnishes and ...