Post details: Decorative Painting Primer - Part 3


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Decorative Painting Primer - Part 3


Decorative Painting Primer 1. Tape off moldings, trim, and ceiling. Select two colors from the same family that are near one another on a color chart. (Two shades of olive tans are used here.)





Decorative Painting Primer 2. Pour each color into a separate paint tray. Using small rollers, randomly roll each color on the wall.






Decorative Painting Primer 3. Blend some as you go so the wall is covered with variations of the two blended colors. Don't leave any hard lines. Allow the walls to dry thoroughly.






Decorative Painting Primer 4. Choose a third color several shades lighter than the lightest color used. Dilute the color with three parts water to one part paint. Wear gloves for protection. Submerge a cotton rag in diluted paint. Squeeze out paint. With the rag loosely wadded, press it against the wall. Try to have enough paint in the rag so it shows but not so much that it runs when pressing. Continue to turn the rag in your hand, re-gathering it and pressing it against the wall a dozen times or until you decide you need more paint. Continue this process over the entire wall.

5. After the wall is dry, rag on another layer of watered down paint if you think too much of the underpainting is showing through.

Helpful Hints
- This technique works well for smooth or textured walls.
- The technique is very messy; have lots of clean rags and drop cloths on hand.
- Half of a clean, cotton T-shirt, with sleeves, neck, and hem removed, works well for this paint application.


Skill Level: Intermediate (Complexity comes from keeping lines uniform.)

Time (not including painting base coat): 2 days


- Satin, semigloss, or gloss paint for base coat
- Paint for top coat
- 2-inch trim brush
- Small artist's brush
- 4-inch roller
- Paint tray and liner
- Rags
- Rubber comb (available in the decorative painting aisle in the crafts store)
The base coat here is a grayed
medium-green. The combed
layer is a cream color.

- Blue painter's tape, or another quick-release masking tape


Combing1. Tape off moldings, trim, and ceiling. Choose coordinating colors with enough contrast to differentiate between the base and the combed top coat. Paint the wall with a base coat. Allow the wall to dry thoroughly. Tape the trim. Use a roller to apply paint vertically to wall. Roll twice for approximately an 8-inch width.

2. Holding the comb with both hands, apply even pressure and drag the comb down the wall in one continuous motion. Repeat the process, alternating between rolling and combing.

Better Homes and Gardens



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