Faux Marble Painted Floors

Faux Marble Painted Floors

Mark Chamberlain
Mar 6, 2012

Last week I wrote about painted linoleum floors in a Brooklyn rental, which anyone could do in a weekend. This week I return to a project I did a few years ago, which required repair post water damage and is much more complex in its scale and development.

I never really had good photographs of this after so many computer crashes, and it was fun to revisit it in person. The repeat is based on the classical patterns of Romans--they, the masters of Art and Design. I know I took it from my travel photos, and it could easily be from a floor or a coffered ceiling.

Colorwise, I have a list of what we used, but half of it is from Janovic and I haven't used their paint in years. But it's blues and greys and blacks and browns, and if I have one regret, it's that the one center grey that looks slightly sea foam green, I wish it was warmer. And remember, the thing that distinguishes floor paint from wall paint is that it's slightly pliable, though for thin glazes it hardly matters.

About the marbling--I never liked faux marbre until I started playing with it myself--it always seemed liked one bland, crafty thing. To do it well, you must approach your project like an artist, with a beginning, middle and an end; you have to be extremely Zen and delicate; you should be light of touch and transparent in your glazes. Technically, you're applying darks and lights with sea sponges and turkey feathers, and I find that I'm taking up as much paint as I put down with the sea sponge as I go. In this project I tried in different veining in each color, though I'm not sure that's evident in these pix. As Obi Wan said, "Use your feelings, Luke!"

(Images: Mark Chamberlain

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