Lewes painter plans on keeping busy

Ed St. Jean says quality matters
August 14, 2014
Ed St. Jean, owner of A Fine Line Custom Painting in Lewes, holds a bucket of paint while standing with his family (l-r) daughter Elle, wife Katie and daughter Grace. SOURCE SUBMITTED

Not everyone who buys a new home wants the paint job that comes with it.

That's what 31-year-old painter Ed St. Jean is banking on.

St. Jean started A Fine Line Custom Painting about 18 months ago, doing what he loves - painting.

“It's been a pretty awesome experience,” he said. “We've met some great people along the way.”

The full-time insurance broker started the business for extra income, so his wife – pregnant at the time – didn't have to work. St. Jean said he didn't want to put his daughter and soon-to-be born baby daughter in daycare, but he knew he and his wife would have to figure out other ways to make their finances work.

He said he knew the numbers didn't work, so he had to make it work. “Instead of finding a job, I decided to create a job," he said.

From that point on, St. Jean said, he vowed to do quality work on everything he paints, from using higher-quality wipeable, mildew- and mold-resistant paint to giving a fair price for the job. He works with a friend, who also has a full-time job, specializing in painting newly constructed homes for homeowners who want to get away from standard builder paint.

St. Jean said he and his wife had been in love with the Cape Region since visiting family, who live in the area, several years ago.

“Every time we came to visit, we never wanted to leave,” he said.

They made the move from Baltimore to Lewes a couple years ago, which forced St. Jean to split his weeks working from home and commuting to Baltimore for his full-time job.

"We love it here. We just knew we needed to live here," he said.

The couple has two daughters, 4 and 1.

A graduate with summa cum laude honors in his class in the Johnson and Wales Culinary Arts program, St. Jean switched career paths but still believes in one thing to succeed.

“Organization is the key to manage anything,” he said.

St. Jean said in the painting business, he's just doing what he's loved doing since high school, and he gets to make a little extra money while doing it.

“We don't have to be some conglomerate business,” he said.

In the next three years, he hopes the company will be one of the premier painting companies in Sussex County. To get there, he said, “We have to be honest and try to do a good job.”

For more information, call 302-945-3285 or go to