New Takes on Old Paint Techniques

New Takes on Old Paint Techniques

Dabney Frake
Mar 25, 2013
When I think of paint treatments for walls, I automatically think of yellow-y brown paint, faux Tuscan facades (complete with crumbling "plaster" to reveal "brick" underneath), and really bad splotchy sponge paint. Yeesh, the 1980s and 1990s were rough. In search of big impact, low commitment rental solutions, I set out to find ways to mess around with paint — things that were both easily reversible, and that look like they belong in this decade. Here's what I found:

1. Create pattern with paint. This gingham wall was done by Michael Penney, editor of House & Home. You can learn how from Southern Living.
2. This is a clever little system for getting the look of wallpaper, only with a roller. The Painted House has several patterns to choose from.
3. Don't like gingham? Painter's tape makes all manner of pattern possible, like this diagonal striped wall, seen in The San Francisco Gate. Even if you are sick of chevron, there are endless other possibilities. 
4. This custom stenciled wall from A Beautiful Mess is a great statement. They made their own pattern, on the cheap.
5. You can also buy an affordable pre-made stencil. This great large scale pattern is from Olive Leaf Stencils. And don't forget: large = less time to apply. 

6. If you're not up for full-on pattern, but still want some interest, try a treatment like these denim wash walls from Ralph Lauren Home.
7. Wild Ink Press used a spray gun to get this ombre effect, but there's another plain 'ol paintbrush method from Lowe's Creative Ideas.
8. Similarly, this linen look from Martha Stewart is subtle but textured. 
9. You can use paint additives or glazes, or go high gloss, to get slight sheen like Kate did in her Hollywood apartment.
10. Or, mix gloss and matte paint in alternating stripes, as in this periwinkle room from Janelle

As for sponge painting, I will pay someone fifty bucks for a great photo of a current and stylish room using this technique. Anyone?

That aside, would you consider a paint treatment? Have you ever successfully done one in a rental?

(Lead Image: Trompe L'Oeil Art; others as linked above)

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