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Sponge Paint a Room

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Red Sponged Walls

The beautifully sponge painted walls in this room really give it a punch!

Photo by Coral Nafie

Using the simple sponge paint technique, you can transform a boring space into an exciting area. This is one decorator look that can be achieved without a great deal of experience or know-how.

Difficulty: Average

Time Required: Varies

Here's How:

  1. Because sponging adds the look of texture and depth to the walls, this is a good technique for walls that have some irregularities in the finish. Prepare your walls for painting and select your paint. Be sure to practice this technique with your color choices on a piece of board before applying it to the walls.
  2. Paint the walls in your room with the base paint color of your choice. Choose a flat, eggshell, satin or semi-gloss interior paint.
  3. Thoroughly mix 1 part of your second (top) color of paint with 4 parts of faux glaze in a big bucket. The more glaze you add, the more transparent the top coat will be. If you want the top coat to be darker or denser, use less faux glaze.
  4. Using a damp, natural sea sponge, dip into the bucket of glaze and blot or wipe the excess off.
  5. Start by lightly pressing the sponge into the corners. Tamp the sponge onto the wall in a random pattern, leaving a thin coat of glaze on the surface of the under coat of paint.
  6. As you work do not press down too hard, or you will get too much glaze on the surface.
  7. Roll the sponge over the surface to achieve a random appearance.
  8. When the glaze is depleted on the sponge, re-dip it and continue working around the room. Work on a small area at a time, always keeping the edge of the painted area wet.
  9. A small piece of sponge can be used to touch up small areas, get into corners, and help create a consistent and random finish.
  10. Stand back from the wall to and make sure that the whole area has the same portion of undercoat and glaze showing.

Tips:

  1. If you choose a light color for the base coat, the glaze of a darker tone will darken the look of the room.
  2. To achieve a lighter look, choose a glaze color which is lighter than the base coat.
  3. Choose a base coat and glaze color that are close in intensity and tone. Too much contrast will produce a splotchy, spotted look.
  4. Be sure to use a natural sea sponge, not a synthetic sponge. Don't forget to wear plastic or rubber gloves, as you'll get the glaze all over your hands.
  5. Begin sponging in the corners and work out. Always keep the wall and the sponge damp.

What You Need:

  • Paint tray and liner, and paint roller
  • Natural sea sponge, bucket, stirring stick, and rubber gloves
  • Base paint to cover all the walls
  • Top coat paint and faux glaze
Related Video
How to Sponge Paint a Wall

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