Scrap board or dryall to practice on
Brushes (including a nylon brush and a paint roller)
Rag or cheese cloth
You have heard about different painting techniques to texturize a wall and maybe you are tempted to try one, but you are just not sure you want to take the plunge. Here is a Quick Tip that will help you decide and maybe save you an aching back since you won't have to paint an entire room to find out if you like the textured look.
Go to your hardware store or home center where you can usually pick up some scrap lumber for free. You may even want to purchase a nice smooth flat piece of lumber. Next, paint a section with your base coat, (or maybe more depending on how many techniques you want to try). Then mix your paint glaze with your accent color. Usually one part paint, to three parts glaze works well but be sure to read the instructions carefully. If you want more color just ad it to the glaze. Then test your technique on your special painters' palate.
Here are a few techniques:
SPONGING: TAKE A SEA SPONGE AND DAMPEN IT A LITTLE BIT AND SQUEEZE THE EXCESS MOISTURE OUT. THEN DIP IT INTO YOUR GLAZE. START APPLYING IT GENTLY TO YOUR BOARD AS IF YOU WERE TRYING TO LIGHTLY BLOT A PIECE OF CLOTH. YOU CAN USE RANDOM PATTERNS; ANY KIND OF PATTERN YOU WANT LET THE ARTIST IN YOU TAKE OVER. THERE ARE REALLY NO RULES JUST TAKE A LOOK AT IT AND SEE IF YOU LIKE IT. BUT THE THING TO REMEMBER ABOUT SPONGING IS THAT YOU NEED TO GET A CONSISTENT AMOUNT OF PAINT ON THE SPONGE EACH TIME.
COLOR WASHING: FOR COLOR WASHING YOU NEED A NYLON POLYESTER BRUSH. DIP IT IN THE CONTRASTING GLAZE COLOR AND GENTLY APPLY IT RIGHT ON THE BASE COAT. THIS WILL GIVE YOUR WALL OR WHATEVER ELSE YOU ARE PAINTING AN ANTIQUE LOOK.
RAGGING ON: FOR THIS TECHNIQUE YOU WILL NEED A CLEAN RAG OR CHEESECLOTH. AGAIN, JUST DAMPEN IT A LITTLE BIT IN SOME WATER AND DIP IT IN YOUR GLAZE. NOW YOU'RE JUST GOING TO ROLL THIS ON YOUR BASE COAT OR BLOT IT WHICHEVER YOU LIKE. THE IMPORTANT THING TO REMEMBER IS WHEN YOU'RE DOING THIS ON A WALL, AFTER YOU'VE DONE A SMALL AREA, STAND BACK, TAKE A LOOK AT IT, MAKE SURE YOU DON'T NEED TO BLOT UP ANY EXCESS GLAZE AND MAKE SURE THAT EVERYTHING LOOKS EVEN.
When you are through trying out your technique you may even want to take your board and place it against the wall or object you are considering painting to see which style looks best.
Dark or Light is the question...
There are many arguments for choosing a dark color paint over a light color. The argument against dark colors is that they could make your room look small. However, darker colors hide flaws, can be cozy, or make an exciting, dramatic statement about your decorating style. But again, you may be faced with the question; should I take the risk?
You can experiment before you head into the wild dark yonder by using your color in small sections of your home. Try painting the inside of a kitchen cabinet that has a glass door, a dining room corner, or a bookcase. You can also use dark colors in an area of the house in which you only spend a small amount of time. You can try a dark, warming, welcoming color in the foyer of your home. Try choosing a shade from a fabric or print that is in the adjoining room. Hallways are also good as they connect the private and public parts of your home.
If you are feeling a little more confident about a dark color, use it on just one wall of a room. (By the way, texturing just one wall of a room with one of the techniques we discussed can really make the room stand out.)
If you decide to go with an accent wall be sure to paint the lighter-toned walls first and the accent walls or textured walls last. Remember that darker colors take longer to dry because they contain the solvent glycol. Be sure to follow the manufacturer's instructions about the drying time between coats, in some cases a coat of paint will take twelve hours, or overnight to dry.
You can always try using a darker shade of a neutral color such as grays and browns.
Dark tones tend to highlight flaws on a wall, so when painting with dark colors be sure to use multiple coats and prepare the area carefully. To make sure you have a smooth wall, fill and sand all the holes, cracks, and other imperfections. Then you can examine the walls by raking them with a bright light to check your work. When you are confident the surface is as blemish free as possible, you can apply your primer coat. For the really tough areas, you may want to consider hiding flaws with a simple rough finish by using one of the texturing techniques we discussed earlier. You may even want to try applying the last coat of paint with a crumpled plastic bag (again check this out on your scrap board to be sure you like it).
Since uneven coverage shows more readily with dark colors, when painting with dark colors it is essential to maintain even coverage. The more uniformly you apply the dark colors the better. This is where primer can come in handy. Some manufacturers' dark tones require special deep-base primers that provide a deep shade that is close to the final color, yet still covers the paint beneath.
Be sure to use a brush when painting around windows, doors and other places a roller won't reach. This is called "cutting." And you will need to do it each time you roll on a new coat of paint. This goes for interior corners and intersections between the walls and ceiling.
Always remember "wet on wet." Paint blends when it is wet, if you "cut" in areas and they dry between coats before you can use your roller; the paint stacks up in layers. You could get stuck with a variation of shades, so don't paint any more cut areas than you can cover with your roller with in ten to fifteen minutes.
Finally, before you get started be sure to have the proper equipment. You can expect to pay anywhere from $15-$25 for a quality brush and $5-$7 for a good roller cover. According to the experts, the best brushes have beechwood handles and a blend of long and short bristles. If you are using a latex paint, make sure the roller cover you choose is made of nylon or polyester, NOT lamb's wool.
If you are feeling creative and want to express yourself through painting one room or every room in your house, these Quick Tips should help make the job more satisfying when you finally sit down to relax and enjoy your freshly painted home!