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March 8, 2007 2:33 PM   Subscribe

I punched a hole in the drywall on my apartment. I probably should be asking about managing my anger, but instead I need advice about fixing the hole.

I've patched it up, using a mesh patch and compound, but I'm left with a big bright white square in the middle of a more opaque white wall. Outside of repainting the entire room a new white, is there any good way to camouflage the brighter, lighter drywall patch? I have tried sanding around the edges to make it blend. That makes it better, but doesn't really solve the problem.
posted by owenville to Home & Garden (15 answers total)
You pretty much have to prime it and paint it with the same color as the wall. If you get a pretty decent match on the paint, you may only have to paint the patch to get it to look "good enough". Your building manager might have extra paint laying around, so I would ask there first.
posted by Green Eyed Monster at 2:39 PM on March 8, 2007

Green Eyed is right, you'll have to paint over it. A couple of important tips:

1) To save time and possibly avoid repainting the whole room, you have 2 options. 1 is asking your landlord/building manager. The other, if they don't have any or if your'e afraid to ask, is taking a paint chip to Home Depot and asking them to match the white. However, this may not end up perfect.

2) When using compound, be sure to flatten it very smoothly with a trowel. Then let the compound dry. Next, get a big, squishy, soft sponge and use it to smooth the edges of your patch, as if your'e "sanding", so that even if the patch curves out from the wall a bit, there are no obvious edges/transitions.

Finally, you'll paint over it and assuming you've matched the paint, you're good to go.
posted by twiggy at 2:44 PM on March 8, 2007

I probably should be asking about managing my anger

Well, I know you aren't, but as a young lad I had this inclination many times. The last time I hit a stud. Hand go crunch. It would behoove you to work on the anger management.

Your building manager might have extra paint laying around

I agree with this, but be careful how you ask. "I punched a whole in the wall and now I am trying to fix it" is probably not the best way. Tell them you want to touch up some things.
posted by Big_B at 2:45 PM on March 8, 2007

That's nothing. You should see what happens to people who live in glass houses.

Paint the whole wall, buddy. It's the only way.
posted by fourcheesemac at 2:51 PM on March 8, 2007

Places like Home Despot have digital scanner things that can match paint color if you bring them a sample (maybe something left over fromm your repair). Apparently they're pretty good - I bet if you did this you could get away with just painting the patch.
posted by exogenous at 3:09 PM on March 8, 2007

Painting the whole wall is not the only way, but it is the best.

Regardless if you go the "extra paint" from the building or the paint chip to the hardware store, you'll want to be sure that you're using the same finish on the wall. If you've got a semi-gloss wall and you use flat to touch up, or vice-versa, it'll be glaring.

Know your finishes.
posted by FlamingBore at 3:11 PM on March 8, 2007

Big_B, I did a similar thing but I was being more drama queen than legit rage and I made a mental note of where the next stud should be and hit as hard as I could aiming to miss it, hoping to put a hole in the sheet rock. I was in a basement apartment and didn't realize the walls were cement. My hand wasn't right for several years.
posted by InkaLomax at 3:59 PM on March 8, 2007

I put in a few good holes that i patched up, sanded down, and left as-is.

I left up a few christmas cards to deal with the color mismatch.
posted by jma at 4:06 PM on March 8, 2007

This may be beyond obvious, but use a roller to paint over the patch so that the texture matches the rest of the wall. If the paint is a good match and you carefully "feather" the paint at the edges -- lifting the roller off very gradually to provide a little bit of overlap with the existing paint job -- you may be able to almost completely mask the patch.

Also -- if you do end up having to repaint, you may be able to get away with just repainting the one wall rather than the whole apartment.

I thought I was the only one ...
posted by ourobouros at 4:30 PM on March 8, 2007

My roommate freshman year of college put two holes in the wall. He put a poster up because he couldn't match the paint... If you can bring some of the paint to home depot they can try to match it. For instance if you have the hole you punched out...
posted by magikker at 10:21 PM on March 8, 2007

Hang a picture over it.
posted by Flashman at 12:59 AM on March 9, 2007

You could have painted the entire wall in the time it took to read this thread anyway.
posted by fourcheesemac at 4:19 AM on March 9, 2007

My fiance has punched the wall or ceiling a few times. Once he screwed an air vent over a hole in the ceiling. Everyone thinks it a fan. May not be the best solution though.
posted by elvissa at 6:21 AM on March 9, 2007

One thought: you should get a stud finder and subtly mark the wall for future rage venting - 2X6 boards don't give like drywall...

And, you put a time capsule in there, right?
posted by M.C. Lo-Carb! at 7:46 AM on March 9, 2007

Second marking the studs for next time.
posted by lostburner at 6:30 PM on March 9, 2007

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