Has your picture hanging left perforations in the wall? Gaff Goddess has the answer
Household Hack: How to repair a hole in the wall like it never happened
Once you are happy that the hole is filled and the surrounding area is looking smooth, you can paint. Photograph: Getty Images
Holes in walls from previous wall hanging can really distract the eye in a chic room. It can also be a reminder of a DIY moment that has gone wrong or be something you need to take care of before the end of a lease. But how exactly do you fill a hole in a wall well and not create even more of an eyesore? It’s easy, I promise.
– A tube of filler – go for a quick-drying, premixed tube. Massage her gently in the tube to prepare the contents for use.
– A filling knife – a points card will do here if you don’t have one.
– Sandpaper – I like a fine grade in a block.
– Safety glasses and a mask – safe is chic and you are fabulous, so let’s protect ourselves, shall we?
– A tub of water – just trust me here.
You need to smooth out the area around the hole first. Usually it will be a little lumpy or cracked. Run your filling knife over the area, kind of like you’re shaving your legs. Be gentle – you just want to take away any peeling or cracked paint. If the hole is raised from a fitting being pulled out, use the bottom of the filler knife handle to very softly tap it, to recess it a little. Applying the filler over a dent is better than adding it on to a lump.
You now need to squeeze the filler on to your filling knife. This will look like a clay mask. How stunning. Smear it over the hole and then smooth it outward. Many people will tell you that’s it for application, but in this house we do things right. Dip your filler knife in the tub of water to wet it and then go back over the patch of filler, working again from inside out. This will fade the filler out from the hole instead of leaving a raised edge.
Allow drying time as per the instructions on the pack. Once complete, you’ll need to sandpaper over the filler patch – goggles and mask on please, there’ll be lots of fine particles floating around.
Run your hand over the patch to see if you’ve missed any rough or raised areas. You are trying to flatten it right down so it looks like it’s not an add-on to what’s already there.
Once you are happy that the hole is filled and the surrounding area is looking smooth, you can paint. A word here: unless it is a super-matte white paint it can be difficult to pull off a top-up patch. Going over the whole wall is usually the best way to make it look like it never happened. Sheens and colours change over time and it can be hard to get an exact match even with the same tin of paint.
Laura de Barra, aka the Gaff Goddess, is a property manager, author and She–IY enthusiast from Cork, now based in London