DIY Home Decor: How To Paint a Faux Concrete Wall Finish

Color Therapy

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A few years ago I wrote about a distressed glazing technique which has a distressed feel to it, a way we developed to add visual texture to your walls that doesn't like a stock rag rolling. Here, we take this process one step further.

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The look is both soft and contemporary, works well in urban environments, and is still livable. It’s unique every time, and in this example we’re emphasizing a linear quality, as if the “concrete” was poured into a wood formwork.

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We started with a basecoat of Benjamin Moore White Water 2120-60, and then broke up the grey with slashes of black, brown and blue applied randomly with a putty knife, which remain as part of the underpainting.

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We then drew in pencil lines at four-inch intervals; these need not be exact, and follow the rhythm of the room.

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Glazing begins with Nickel 2119-50 (glaze 3:1 ratio to paint) applied with a nine-inch plaster blade and blurred in with a rag, and the knifing aspect of this suggests Venetian plaster or stucco. There’s no sponging this time out, and drips and splatters add to the charm.

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Next, we went around the room again with a darker glaze in Smoke Gray 2120-40 to build up layers, and then closed the whole thing up with a final glaze in our original wall color of 2120-60. This makes the whole thing look like one substance.

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You should think of your room as one big painting, with a beginning, middle and end. It’s like Abstract Expressionism for the walls.

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- Re-edited from a post originally published on July 17, 2013 - DF

(Image credits: Mark Chamberlain)

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