One saying that has really saved me a lot of time is from my brother, Rich - it goes thus, "We ain't making watches!". In other words, some things require a lot of detail work (making watches) and some don't (90 % of the rest of the stuff we do).
Case-in-point: the floors at our new house. They are nice but they are not perfect (stains, cupping, etc.) so we decided to just do a quick coat of varnish.
Sure, you could pour your varnish into a paint tray and then dip your mop...or... you can skip that watch-making step and just dump it from the can directly onto the floor:
Then just mop it out evenly:
This took no more than 15 minutes:
Steve spent the weekend up at Milkweed Meadows (what we will call the place) and so had time to do misc. projects whilst waiting for varnish to dry.
He found some cans of good primer in the basement and so decided to go ahead and use those up in the bedroom:
Here's the closet, primed and ready to paint. Steve also used some latex caulk (also found in the basement) to fill-in the lightly cracked and chipped plaster. Caulk is a handy way to "cover up some ugly" pretty quickly.
All painted (with some "country white" that was found in the basement) and ready to go:
Floor of the closet stained and varnished (yeah, with stain and varnish found in the basement!). We'll add some quickie baseboard later.
That country white paint went on so nicely - why not paint the inside of the kitchen cabinets (that were pretty crummy):
This looks much nicer and took only about 1/2 hour:
The cabinets in this place were made in the 50's (judging by the hardware, etc.) and are therefore pretty good quality. They look pretty good once cleaned up:
Why not paint the kitchen floor? Here Steve uses some primer/sealer to cover up the original slat subfloor. The sealer also seals the grain (which is pretty coarse and precludes a stain/varnish finish).
Priming the kitchen floor took about 1/2 hour:
Now for the fun part; adding the color! We chose a nice red porch paint:
Lay it on thick (and buy good paint) and you can get it done in one coat! We've already purchased the wall paint and, let's just say, it'll go well with the sassy floor color.
The next day the floors that were varnished on the day prior looked pretty darn good:
With a few area rugs and our trash-to-treasure and family/friend heirlooms furniture, this place will be darn homey! Take-home lesson: we are, generally speaking, not making watches (which leaves more time for gardening or whatever else you like to do!).