Easy Custom Decorative Painting Techniques

Decorative painting techniques are inventive methods to declare your personal style and to give most anything that can be painted, a custom finish. Choose a decorative painting technique that enhances the room it will be applied in, whether it be walls, furniture or accessories. Use of leftover wall paint is a great way to experiment and water based acrylic or latex paints are also recommended for ease of cleanup.

Sponge Painting-On a level of difficulty, sponge painting is probably the easiest decorative painting technique there is. Start with base coating the project you are transforming and allow to dry. Using a damp sea sponge and a shallow dish of paint in the desired color, load the sponge with paint and lightly pat the base coated surface. To get a more blended and speckled look and working quickly, come back with a clean damp sponge and work the paint further. Experiment with this decorative painting technique by applying more than one color. Stencil and mask off areas to remain solid.

Rag Painting-Start with a freshly painted base coat and allow to dry. With this decorative painting technique, you may choose to mix the paint with an extender. This will allow for a longer drying time, giving you the needed minutes to blend and work the paint. Mix the paint and extender according to the manufacturer’s instructions for the extender. Saturate a lint free rag and squeeze out the excess. Roll up the rag like a wad but in the shape of a hot dog bun. Roll the rag lightly in different directions and re-saturate the rag when needed. Continue until the whole surface is covered.

Plastic Wrap Painting-The finished outcome for this decorative painting technique is very similar to rag rolling. Base coat the surface to be painted and allow to dry. For ease of explanation, I will refer to this decorative painting technique on a wall, of course, you can use it on any surface. Mix the paint with an extender. You will want to work in a small area at a time, so the paint doesn’t begin to dry ahead of you. Roll the paint mixture on a small expanse of the wall. Lay approximately two feet of plastic wrap over the paint. Do not be precise, a sloppier look will give you a more interesting texture. Lightly pat and moosh your hands all over the plastic wrap. Carefully lift the plastic wrap off the wall. If you mess up or smear the paint, simple roll over the paint and repeat the process. Continue this decorative painting technique until the wall is finished. You can reuse the plastic wrap many times or consider using old plastic grocery bags for a more economical tool.

Color Washing-This decorative painting technique gives a soft leathery look. Paint a base coat and allow to dry. Choose a contrasting color that is slightly darker or lighter than the base coat. Mix the paint with an extender. Using a lint free rag, dip the rag into the paint mixture and wring out lightly. You want the rag wet but not dripping. Begin washing the wall or intended project in a circular motion. It will not hurt to go over an area more than once, as long as the paint is still wet, to get the desired result. Continue to the end of your project or until a whole wall is completed. Do not stop working in the middle of a wall.

Because these decorative painting techniques are so fast and easy, it is slightly baffling to see the extraordinary results you can achieve in a short amount of time and with very little effort. You don’t even need to be crafty.

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