Tuesday, April 19, 2016

"No Matter The Age Or Condition, A Coat Of Paint Provides A New Beginning"

Take an old home - even one not in very good condition. Take an apartment that has been vacated with various signs remaining of its previous tenant. Take a wooden or metal piece of furniture that has started showing its age - or even one collected from a yard sale or lying by the side of the road.

What's one thing all of these items have in common? A can be improved with a coast of paint. The same is true of new homes, but that is to add personalization more than to cover inherent flaws or signs of wear.

Paint has the special quality of being able to be applied over a surface and to hide (maybe with more  than one coat) what was there previously. It might be a color that is no longer desired, one that is too bold, one that doesn't go with the current decorating scheme or furniture choices, or one that was selected by someone else at an earlier time.

There might be patches in the wall or on the piece of furniture. There could be large stains. Maybe the paint is faded around where a large piece of furniture or painting used to be so that silhouette of that other object is still visible as a darker color.

Even when paint isn't needed to mask or cover up flaws, repairs, or stains, it is used to provide a fresh start.  Often, when someone moves into to an apartment or an existing home that has been occupied previously by someone else, one of the first things that is done - often before even unpacking the boxes or moving in the furniture - is to paint the walls. Any smudges, stains, or reminders of the previous occupant is easily removed with a covering of paint. Plus, it "sanitizes" the home or apartment by removing any traces of the previous occupants and making it belong to the new owner or tenant.

Paint has a wonderful quality of transforming objects to which it is applied. It really is amazing what a coat of paint will do for changing something drab, dingy, or outdated - or something associated with a particular time or event in our lives or with people we didn't even know in the case of a previously occupied home or a second-hand piece of furniture - into something completely different. It is literally giving something a fresh start.

Painting isn't limited to just an occasional or infrequent application either. Anytime we want to revitalize a tired room or an experienced piece of furniture and give it a new life, just add a fresh coat of paint to it. We know how great a fresh coat of paint can be for a tired room or piece of furniture that we want to revitalize.

Paint also adds a lot of color that appeal to us emotionally, it brightens our mood as a result, and it can be changed as often as we feel like it.

Paint has semi-magical properties that we need to remember and use - for ourselves or for our aging-in-place clients - as often as we need its help.


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Steve HoffackerCAPS, MCSP, MIRM, is a licensed Certified Aging-In-Place Specialist instructor and best-selling author of universal design books. To learn about this and other programs for aging-in-place or universal design, visit stevehoffacker.com or call 561-685-5555.