Murals are one of the most popular design elements for children’s bedrooms, playrooms and nurseries. Find out what you need to know whether you plan on DIYing or hiring a pro.
As far as how long proposals take to put together and how they’re presented, Michelle says it depends on the scope and the setting. The expert muralist adds, “Sometimes the proposal happens on-site verbally just minutes after I’ve met with the client, mostly for informal settings such as a small home.” And although small jobs like the two rooms done for the Ciotti family are quick to price out and also to execute, larger jobs are a different story. Michelle notes, “For something with much larger scope, such as a 5,000-square-foot home or a loft-like space with enormous walls, the proposals take way longer due to insurance proofing and tons of red tape, not to mention logistics for getting in and out and abiding by homeowner’s associations rules.”
Something Michelle suggests to homeowners either attempting murals themselves or looking to hire a pro is the importance of creating schedules, especially when it comes to children’s rooms. The expert explains, “Since sleep is so important both for young children, especially toddlers and preschoolers, and also for their parents, it’s important to decide when the best time to prep and paint is. If you throw off a child’s sleep schedule or render their room inaccessible, the experience can be negative, and murals are supposed to be fun.” By mapping out what task of the project will be done on which day, then allowing a certain amount of hours for each task, it will make the multiple layers involved much less overwhelming.
As a way to avoid extra costs related to working with a professional muralist, Michelle suggests keeping revisions to custom sketches minimal. Revisions are time-consuming, and to cut down on the number of revisions, Michelle likes to consult in person once during the initial brainstorming process, then revise the design strictly via email, then scan the updated sketches for client approval. Something else to consider is adding change orders. “Be careful when you start to add extra things on additional walls, new characters or special finishes. The muralist will need to recalculate costs since this increases labor and materials,” Michelle says. As far as the normal routine for payment is concerned, aside from change orders, muralists require 50% of the project price up front, plus the addition of any added-on changes upon completion.
Whether a homeowner plans to hire a professional muralist or paint the room themselves, Michelle suggests doing as much preparation as possible, not only to save money if a professional is taking on the job, but also to ensure a better end product. These tasks include the following: painting the walls with the mural’s dominant color first; laying down drop cloths everywhere, even layering several on top of one another; laying all supplies out nearby; taping all baseboards, molding and ceilings; sealing painter’s tape to prevent bleeding; taping off outlets; and having a fan to help circulate air throughout the room.
To see more of Michelle’s work, check out her website and portfolio.