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Faux Finishing guide

Faux Finishing and Flood

What does it do?

Worldwide, Penetrol and Floetrol have long been recognised as indispensable items for successful faux finishing. Now that this unique finish is becoming more popular, we trust this information will help to make you an expert in the art of Faux.

Imagine the possibilities

Here is your chance to use your imagination in the exciting art of Faux and Fantasy Finishing.

We'll show you how faux finishing techniques can easily add beauty and value to your home.

SPONGING - RAGGING - COMBING
WOOD GRAINING - MARBLING

Our step-by-step instructions and photographs make all of the faux techniques easy to do. Now, you can breathe new life into a room or to old furniture and explore your own creativity at the same time.

 

Before You Start

Take a few minutes to familiarize yourself with finishing basics.

Positive Application

The easiest and most common technique involves applying the paint to a surface with an applicator such as a sponge or a rag.

Negative Removal

This technique involves applying an even coat of paint and then removing some of it, or working with it, using a rag or plastic or rubber comb.

It's important to remember that when you're using different colours, the first colour applied will show the least, and the last colour applied will be the predominant color.

Both finishing techniques start with the application of a solid colour of paint (the base coat). This base coat needs to be a satin or semi-gloss, either latex (acrylic) or alkyd (oil-base), and should be thoroughly dry before you begin faux finishing.

 

General Tips

Creating Faux That Looks Real: It's In The Paint

Whichever faux finishing technique you decide to use, it's essential that your surface is smooth and prepared correctly, and your paint is 'workable'.

In other words, if the drying time of the glaze mixture is too fast, and it "sets" too quickly, you won't have time to create a successful faux finish.

That's why Flood's line of paint additives and surface preps are an essential component in your faux finishing project. They not only ensure that the base coat is smooth, but more importantly they increase the working time necessary for faux finishing.

 

faux2Floetrol

Floetrol, mixed directly into water-based (acrylic) paint, creates a smooth base coat. Floetrol also increases the working time of the glaze colour, giving you the necessary time to create your chosen effect.

Penetrol

Penetrol, mixed directly into oil or alkyd based paint, will improve the brush ability of your paint and leveling of the base coat. Penetrol also keeps the paint from drying too fast thus increasing the working time of your Paints and glazes.

 

Choosing colours

Start your project by first selecting colours from your local paint dealer's paint chip chart.

Try to select colours that will compliment your furniture, carpet, wallpaper or window treatments to help coordinate the look of your room.

Most hues are arranged in values ranging from light to dark. After selecting the correct hue within a given colour family, you will most likely want to choose a lighter value for your base coat. A darker value is then mixed for your glaze colour.

You can reverse the values for a softer effect using a dark colour for the base coat and two to three shades lighter for the glaze.

That's why it's important to practice and experiment beforehand on sample boards, so you can try out different combinations, see which technique works best, and explore your own ideas.

Remember, the colour you apply last will be the most predominant, so start with the colour you want to see least and end with the colour you want to see most.

 

Surface Prep And Base Coat Application

You must have a completely sealed surface for successful decorative painting.

Fill cracks, holes, depressions, etc. with a patch or spackling compound. Then prime and seal the area with a primer/sealer. Your paint dealer can help you with your choice.

Once the surface prep is complete, you can apply a base coat of any interior satin or semi-gloss alkyd (oil-base) or acrylic paint in the colour of your choice. Let it dry overnight.

Once the base coat has dried, you can mask off any areas you don't want to decorate with a low tack painter's tape. Mask off adjacent walls and ceilings. Remove the tape immediately after the glazing step.


faux3Sponging is one of the quickest and easiest decorative painting techniques. It gives a deep, textured appearance to walls, ceilings or furniture. Sponging with different colours adds originality to any surface. You can really be creative with the sponging technique so try it with more than one colour.

Materials You Will Need:

Large sea sponge, paint tray, painter's tape, gloves (disposable), paper towels, for blotting, Floetrol, Penetrol.

Tips:

• Sponge one square yard at a time before moving on.

• Complete opposite walls first, then adjacent walls to ensure you are always putting tape on dry walls.

• If you're applying more than one colour, wait until the first colour dries before applying additional colours.

• Using an empty can or disposable cup as a measuring device, mix 3 volumes of acrylic paint to 1 volume of Floetrol or alkyd (oil-base) paint to one volume Penetrol.

faux41. Pour some paint mixture into your paint tray. Dampen sponge in water and squeeze out excess. Lightly dip sponge into paint. Blot off excess paint on paper or paper towel.

2. Press the sponge lightly against the wall. Repeat this in an overall pattern and texture, making sure some of the base coat is showing through.

3. Rotate sponge (except when touching the wall) so you're not creating repetitive patterns or marks.

4. Work the edges of the wall first. Balance the finish on the wall to match the edges. Be sure to stand back every once in a while to judge the uniformity of the pattern and finish. You can make corrections by using the base coat colour and a fresh sponge.


faux5By using a crumpled rag, you can get a softly textured, delicately mottled effect, creating a backdrop finish for furniture and artwork. Use this technique to add uniqueness to any room, or to revitalize old furniture.

Materials You Will Need:

Lint free rags, paint tray, painter's tape, gloves (disposable), Floetrol, Penetrol.

Tips:

• Work on opposite walls first and let dry. Mask corners. Complete adjacent walls in the same manner.

• Using an empty can or disposable cup as a measuring device, mix 3 volumes of acrylic paint to 1 volume of Floetrol or 3 volumes alkyd (oil-base) paint to one volume Penetrol.

faux61. Pour some paint mixture into your paint tray. Dampen sponge in water and squeeze out excess. Lightly dip sponge into paint. Blot off excess paint on paper or paper towel.

2. Press the sponge lightly against the wall. Repeat this in an overall pattern and texture, making sure some of the base coat is showing through.

3. Rotate sponge (except when touching the wall) so you're not creating repetitive patterns or marks.

4. Work the edges of the wall first. Balance the finish on the wall to match the edges. Be sure to stand back every once in a while to judge the uniformity of the pattern and finish. You can make corrections by using the base coat colour and a fresh sponge.

You can be creative by:

• ragging on more than one colour.

• ragging on the same colour of a different sheen than the base coat.

• ragging clear varnish on a flat base colour.

These are approximate ratios. Surface conditions, temperature, humidity, direct sunlight and application methods vary widely and may affect performance. Experiment on samples using different ratios.



faux7Combing is a negative removal technique that consists of applying a coloured glaze over a base coat and then "combing" through it. You can create a subtle effect by using a dry brush or create a distinct contrast by using a notched squeegee.

Materials You Will Need:

Painter's comb (available at most paint or art supply stores), paint tray, painter's tape, dry towels/rags, gloves (disposable), Floetrol, Penetrol.

Tips:

• Experiment with different colour samples to be sure you have the colours you want. Try using two values of the same hue (medium green over light green).

• This technique is easier if you have a partner. One person lays the combing coat, the other combs through it.

• Using an empty can or disposable cup as a measuring device, mix 3 volumes of acrylic paint to 1 volume of Floetrol or 3 volumes alkyd (oil-base) paint to one volume Penetrol.

faux81. Be sure your base coat is level and completely dry. Start by pouring glaze made of paint and Floetrol (or Penetrol) into a paint tray. The more conditioner you add to the mixture the more open time you have, and the more lucent the finish. Do not add too much conditioner for vertical surfaces as technique may sag or vanish. Plan on combing an entire section (wall) without stopping.

2. Put the combing coat on over the base coat, being sure you cover the entire area from top to bottom.

3. Starting at the top, comb vertically through the coat immediately. Pull the comb through the paint in one long stroke keeping the pressure as even as possible.

4. When you've completed one stroke, wipe all excess paint from the comb on dry towels. Begin the next stroke parallel to the first one. (Don't worry about keeping a straight line or steady pressure, irregularities create appealing textures on the wall.)

Clean painter's comb or squeegee with water every few strokes to get rid of glaze build-up. Continue glazing and combing until you reach a corner or natural break in the room. Stand back away from the wall often to be sure your technique is consistent. Start working on opposite walls, and finish with adjacent walls.

These are approximate ratios. Surface conditions, temperature, humidity, direct sunlight and application methods vary widely and may affect performance. Experiment on samples using different ratios.



faux9The rich pattern and colour of natural wood can be achieved through the wood graining technique. This timeless look can make furniture, walls, doors, and even floors look beautiful without the high price of purchasing, installing and finishing natural wood.

Materials You Will Need:

Wood graining rocker (available at most paint or hardware stores), 3" paint brush, 2 colours of paint (a low luster enamel as a base coat and an acrylic paint in your desired wood graining colour), paper towels, paint pail, gloves (disposable), painter's tape, Floetrol, Penetrol.

Tips:

• Familiarize yourself with this technique before starting a project. Practice and experiment on a large sheet of cardboard until you feel confident with the technique.

• Treat each section separately. Work one section you feel you can finish comfortably in about 10 minutes.

• Using an empty can or disposable cup as a measuring device, mix 3 volumes of acrylic paint to 1 volume of Floetrol or 3 volumes alkyd (oil-base) paint to one volume Penetrol.
faux10

1. Apply your base coat of low-luster enamel, stroking in the direction for the wood grain. Allow your base coat to dry thoroughly (follow manufacturer's suggestions) before applying the wood graining coat.

2. Mix your acrylic paint with Floetrol, or your alkyd paint with Penetrol, and apply a thin, even coat to a small section. Make sure it is in the direction you want the wood grain to follow.

3. Using a wood graining rocker, pads, or brush, slide it through the wet paint to create the grain effect. Move the rocket or brush in a continuous motion through the small section you're working on.

4. Add straight grain to either side of the heart grain.

Use small dry brushes for detailing small areas such as the molding around a window so the wood grain is continuous for the length of each area.

For more interest, vary techniques so that the grain does not run perfectly parallel to adjacent areas.

Wood graining may take some time to get used to, but it does get easier with each project.

These are approximate ratios. Surface conditions, temperature, humidity, direct sunlight and application methods vary widely and may affect performance. Experiment on samples using different ratios.


faux11Marbling adds a luxurious feeling to any room. Many different colour combinations and techniques can be used to add an air of sophistication to any interior surface.

Materials You Will Need:

1 Natural sea sponge, pointed artist brush (available at art supply stores), goose feather, 1 paint tray, plastic plates, paper towels, gloves (disposable), Floetrol, Penetrol.

Tips:

• You'll want to choose three colours for this technique: two colours for sponging, and one accent colour for veining.

• The paints look best when they are from the same colour family. Experiment with samples to choose the best colours for your project.

• Using an empty can or disposable cup as a measuring device, mix 3 volumes of acrylic paint to 1 volume of Floetrol or 3 volumes alkyd (oil-base) paint to one volume Penetrol.

faux121. Start with a light sponging coat, allowing the off-white base coat to show through.

2. Apply the second coat over the first coat, in the same manner, but allowing the base coat to show through.

3. Put a small amount of veining colour into a plastic plate. Dip the tip of the artist's brush into the paint, and drag, push or roll it across the surface to suggest marble veins. Then drag a feather through the veins while they are still wet, shifting the feather's position across the surface to create interesting patterns.

4. Add finer veins last, crossing over larger veins in different directions. Be sure to step back occasionally, to survey the overall look of the piece. It is better to understate the veins rather than overdo it with too many veins. The same applies to choosing colours. Less is more! Colours and patterns will amplify their effect as you increase the surface area over an entire piece of furniture or wall. Roll the handle of the artist brush between your fingers and thumb to get contrasts in your veining.

These are approximate ratios. Surface conditions, temperature, humidify, direct light and application methods vary widely and may affect performance. Experiment on samples using different ratios.


Faux Finishing

An easy, inexpensive way to add texture, depth and interest to walls, ceilings and fixtures. All you need is the right tools, the right paint, FLOETROL or PENETROL to make the faux finish job easier and let your imagination run free.