We recently had an interview with a professional painter decorator, Richard, who explains what really goes on in the decorating world.
Introduce yourself and your company
Hi, my name is Richard Drew owner of Drew Décor. We specialise in decorating domestic properties, both interior and exterior. From modern homes to Victorian homes we have worked on all styles.
How long have you been a professional painter and decorator?
I have been a professional painter and decorator for 20 years. With experience in all aspects of painting and decorating from water/fire damaged homes to the ultra-luxurious.
How did you get started in your industry?
I started out with a apprenticeship with a local decorating firm, past my NVQs. It’s hard at first and takes many years to master. There are so many aspects to painting and decorating it takes many years to become capable of producing the perfect finish.
What are the common mistakes you see people making when decorating?
Many people have a go at painting and decorating but most neglect the preparation. Preparation is key to a nice finish and is the most difficult part of the job to get right. Sanding down surfaces and using the correct primers is key. The most common mistakes people make is using cheap paint and tools.
What is your 1 top tip for DIY-ers when decorating?
My No.1 tip for DIY-ers when decorating is to buy quality tools and quality materials. Head out to your nearest trade decorating centre for the tools, materials and advice. This is much better than your regular DIY superstore because this is where the professionals go!
Why do you think it pays to use a professional?
It pays to use a professional because it is more cost effective.
- You will have a perfectly decorated room
- It will last longer
- You can go to work while its been decorated
- A quicker job
- Less stress
What essential item do you always need in your tool bag?
At Drew Décor we are always innovating. Buying new tools to help us produce the perfect job. We use many tools from our top of the range brushes, rollers and wallpaper hanging tools.
The best tool we have is our dustless sander. The dustless sander enables us to sand ceilings, walls and wood work perfectly with out dust. This helps and protects our health, the customers health and eliminates dust in the atmosphere when painting.
What is your essential Owatrol product and why?
Our favourite Owatrol product is Owatrol Oil. Owatrol Oil is the best rust inhibitor!
It penetrates deeply until it reaches the sound metal below and drives out moisture and air, stabilising the rust and preventing it from forming again.
We use it for many tasks, its so versatile. It can be used on old rotted wood to stabilise it and you can even add it to your paint to improve adhesion and prevents cracking and peeling.
What has been your most painted colour this year?
Each decorating project is different. Each customer has different tastes but our most used colours is greys and neutral colours. Teamed up with a bold colour or wallpaper makes it more interesting.
On average how many cups of tea do you drink a day?
Decorating is a thirsty job. This means tea first thing in a morning, one at Ken Bruce’s pop master, one at dinner and finally a mid-day tea at 2:30pm
Unfortunately for me I have recently gone caffeine free!
Do you have any nightmare stories of where a job has gone wrong?
We had to take two chandeliers down….only joking!
Do you have any celebrities on your client list?
A few clients have made Wikipedia but my I have signed the official secrets act.
What is it that makes your service stand apart from the crowd?
Our excellent customer service. Turn up on time when quoting and arriving on site, responding quickly to emails and our attention to detail.
We do things properly and thoroughly without cutting corners. We have won an award for our services with Which Trusted Trades which we are proud of.
Describe a typical working day for you and your team.
Normally I will be collecting materials from the local decorating centre and then on to pick one of the lads up before arriving on the job at 8am.
We meet up with the rest of the team and proceed to start or carry on with our latest decorating project. We paint exteriors as well as painting and wallpapering interior rooms. Our most common jobs are hall, stairs and landings.
We work hard all day with a few tea breaks thrown in. We generally complete jobs in five days so it’s easier on the customer. If it’s a large project we have all four men on the job. If it’s a smaller project we split the team into two and run two jobs at once. So a ‘typical’ day is always different.
Where do you see both yourself, and your business in 5 years’ time?
In five years time I plan to have expanded the business with more employees to cope with the high demand. This might see me taking a back seat to manage, organise and quality control.
Thank you for your time Richard, we wish you and you company all the very best.