“Duct tape fixes everything,” they say and, if you’re any kind of a handyman (or even a housewife), you know this is true. Today, however, we’re going to take a look at an under-appreciated relative of our favorite silver sticky tape – Painter’s tape. Don’t let the name fool you though… While it might have originated for the purpose of helping people when they painted, it’s graduated on to bigger and better things.
What is Painter’s Tape?
Painter’s tape is a variety of paper tape that bears a strong resemblance to a roll of blue masking tape. The main difference between masking tape and painter’s tape (aside from the fact that painter’s tape is blue) is that masking tape has a slightly more sticky adhesive on the back. Painter’s tape is sometimes referred to as drafting tape, though some argue that drafting tape is more narrow. For simplicity’s sake, we’re simply referring to blue paper tape as painter’s tape today (no offense, drafters).
Painter’s tape is usually used to edge off areas that you don’t want to paint on, such as using it to cover the glass when you’re painting the trim around your window or some artists use it to cover an area of canvas when adding certain effects. If you’re planning to paint something and you don’t want the paint to get in certain areas, painter’s tape is your best friend. But, not only is painter’s tape useful to painters – there are many useful things to do with painter’s tape, even if you never pick up a brush!
Painter’s Tape and Pets
If you have pets, painter’s tape can come in very handy. I have a Boston Terrier, a Chihuahua and a Turkish Van cat – all of whom shed. Taking a length of painter’s tape, I wrap it around my hand, forming a loop with the sticky side out. In a pinch, this is a fantastic method of removing pet hair from your clothes (and works on lint as well). Simply slide your hand up and down your clothes, allowing the tape to roll loosely around your hand, and the pet hair will stick to the tape, effectively cleaning it from your clothes. It’s a lot cheaper than a lint roller too!
Living in Florida, we always have to be ready for hurricanes, in case we have to evacuate. Painter’s tape is also a convenient method of marking our pets’ belongings, such as the carrier, brushes and combs, collars, etc. Painter’s tape will stick to the object you put it on, allowing you to write your name and phone number on it, but when you go to pull it off the object at a later time, painter’s tape will pull off cleanly, not leaving behind the sticky residue commonly seen with masking tape.
Additionally, painter’s tape is helpful for that elderly pet that doesn’t see as well as she used to. Making an X of tape on a screen or glass door will help the pet that’s visual impaired by making the invisible barrier visible once more (this trick also works for small children).
Organizing With Painter’s Tape
Looking to tidy up your house? Painter’s tape is an excellent tool to use any time you want to organize things. It can serve as a label for ziplock bags or aluminum packages of food that you intend to freeze, and it makes an ideal label for totes and items that you’d prefer not to write directly on. This is especially helpful for painted objects, as painter’s tape is less likely to peel off the paint than something with a stronger adhesive, such as masking tape or duct tape.
You can help your kids organize as well, using painter’s tape to show them where certain items belong. This teaches them to always put things back in their place and, once they’re old enough to memorize where items go, they can enjoy the fun and feeling of accomplishment as they peel off the painter’s tape and throw it away. It’s a simple technique, but one that works! Also, if you have a teenage girl that loves to put up pictures of Adam Lambert or Justin Bieber on her bedroom walls, don’t use masking tape as I learned (the hard way) that it takes the paint off your walls. What can you use? You guessed it! Painter’s tape will stick to the walls but lift off much cleaner than masking tape.
Ever find yourself frustrated by the tangle of cords behind your entertainment center or your desk? Try gathering up your cords and taping them together in a small group. Blue painter’s tape works great for that because it isn’t all that sticky, allowing the cords some play, plus you can label them for future reference. It’s nice knowing that this bundle of cords goes to the dvd player and that bundle of cords belongs to the video games.
Painter’s Tape Can Even Help You Study!
It’s true! Instead of running out and buying more expensive Post-it Notes, just use a strip of painter’s tape – it’s far less expensive and will lift cleanly off your books and papers, leaving no mess. A strip of painter’s tape can be used to mark a particular page in your book or, depending on how you position it, can even keep track of what paragraph you were on.
Putting Up Blinds Becomes a Snap With Painter’s Tape
This is a personal pet peeve for me – Have you ever tried to center the screws in the plastic tabs, when you go to put up mini blinds? It sure is a pain, trying to line them up and then keep the screws straight as you put them in. Next time, try putting up a strip of painter’s tape first, then put the plastic tab up against the tape and use it to mark exactly where the screws should go. You can then use your screwdriver and install the screws in the wall before pulling up the tape and, tada! The marks are all gone but you have perfectly straight mini blinds!
Painter’s Tape Works With Caulk Too
If you’re putting caulk around your sink, bathtub or shower, be sure to use painter’s tape around the edge of the basin. This way, you can put on your caulk, smooth it out nicely and, when you pull up the painter’s tape – Wow! You have a very clean and sharp edge, compliments of your painter’s tape. While everyone else gets caulk all over and remarks about how nice a job you did, you can just smile and bask in how easy it all was.
There’s Nothing You Can’t Do With Painter’s Tape!
(Well, alright… Don’t go bungee jumping with it!)
Painter’s tape has many wonderful uses – These are just a few examples of the versatility of painter’s tape and drafting tape. Do you have any great uses for blue painter’s tape? If you do, be sure to let us know – We always love to find new uses for this wonderful blue tape!