I believe that careful prep work pays off.  I make sure that I mask my areas carefully before I start any paint job.

Despite my best efforts, I will sometimes get a little bleed-over.  This problem can be difficult when the paint is on a newly finished staircase.  One way to regain a nice sharp edge is shown below:

  1. A rag is placed over a putty knife.
  2. A little Goo Gone is dripped on the rag.
  3. The edge is carefully scrapped.
  4. A new sharp edge is formed!

Rough paint edge

Cleaning with Goo Gone and a putty knife covered with a rag.

A nice and clean edge!

Staircase overview.