Post details: Decorative Painting Primer


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Decorative Painting Primer

You've seen them everywhere -- walls that come alive with subtle texture and color. Now you can create the same finishes in your home with this guide on popular decorative painting techniques.


Skill Level: Beginner

Time (not including painting base coat): 1/2 to 1 day

Paint for base coat
Paint for sponging coat
Natural sea sponge
Paint tray and liner
Paper bags or newspapers for blotting
Cardboard for corners




1. For this project, diluted off-white paint was sponged over pale yellow walls. If you are painting a base coat, allow it to dry overnight. For best results, use two colors that are subtle and close to each other on the color chart.

Sponging2. Wet your sponge with water, wringing it out thoroughly. Pour a small amount of paint into a tray or pie tin. Dip the sponge into the paint and blot excess on newspaper. Cup the sponge in your hand and push lightly onto the surface.




Sponging3. Space the patches of color evenly, but change the position of the sponge for an irregular, mottled effect. Close, overlapping marks have the most subtle look; widely spaced sponging with little or no overlapping appears more casual. Try spaced first, then fill in.




Sponging4. Use a piece of cardboard, held up with one hand in a corner, to protect the opposite corner from being over-sponged. Use a small piece of sponge to work in corners.





Helpful Hints
For the most pleasing effect, choose colors without jarring contrast. Yellow and blue, for instance, would produce too much contrast. If you want to add second and third layers, consider choosing your colors from the same paint card for a pleasing subtle effect.

As an alternative, loosely rag on diluted paint with a lightly gathered, not rolled, cotton cloth. Blend as you rag for a different style.

Better Homes and Gardens



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