How to Do Faux Painting For A Decorative Painting Look

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Faux painting is a decorative painting technique used to create the illusion of texture on a wall. Faux painting is an art form that can easily be created using simple tools like sponges, rags and plastic bags to produce a unique decorative painting appearance.


You can use simple faux painting techniques to transform boring pastel colored walls in your home into colorful texture. It might seem difficult to create a faux finish yourself, but faux painting techniques are actually really simple to create and there are many types of faux finishes you can do.


You can create faux painting, sponge painting, rag rolling, crackle painting, faux brick and other faux finishes on drywall, plaster or wood. Follow these steps to learn how to create a faux finish and give your home a decorative painting look and feel.

Things You'll Need

  • Faux painting glaze
  • Decorative painting tools
  • Paint tray
  • Faux painting brush
  • Rags
  • Sponges
  • Plastic bags
  • Drop cloths
  • Painters tape
  • Gloves
  • First you must choose a color scheme for faux painting. You should take your time and understand how to go about choosing a color scheme for a faux finish. For good tips and advice on choosing color schemes, click on my article in the resources section below called - How to Choose Color Schemes For House Painting.

  • Complete all the necessary preparation before you start any faux painting. Faux painting and other decorative painting projects can be messy.

    Preparation will include taping off baseboard, ceiling lines, removing outlet covers, covering floors and also protecting nearby objects with plastic if you're unable to move them. You will also need to patch any holes in the wall before faux painting. Small nicks and marks are likely to be hidden by the faux finish texture, but large holes will not.

  • Apply a basecoat of paint before you begin any faux painting. With a faux finish and any other decorative painting, you apply one or more accent colors over a base coat of your main color. The base coat is usually a regular latex wall paint with usually either a flat or eggshell finish. Flat paint dries faster. Choose a color that will match the faux painting color, or use a different color scheme.

    Sometimes faux painting can be a little more tricky when applying it over eggshell because the smooth surface can make it harder to create the faux finish.

    All you need to do is brush in the edges of the walls with the basecoat color and then roll the paint on the wall.

    Let the paint dry thoroughly before proceeding with your faux finish.

  • Buy some square sample drywall prices from the store. This way you can practice some different faux painting techniques on the sample, before you apply your faux finish to the walls. You'll also be able to find the faux finish effect that you like the most. Paint the sample pieces with the basecoat paint.

  • Buy a faux painting brush that can be used to feather out the faux finish. This gives the faux finish a soft appearance and can make heavy lines or edges of paint less noticeable. Using a faux painting brush can help create a stone, marble, and parchment paper look for a faux finish. You can also use a regular dry latex paint brush to do this.

  • Purchase some faux painting glaze from the paint store as well as some rags and a sponge. The glaze slows down the drying process of the faux finish and also enhances the look of it. With the longer drying time of the faux finish, you have more time to get your faux painting techniques just the way you want them before it dries.

    Mix the faux painting glaze with your faux finish color according to the directions on the can.

  • Put your faux painting mix into a paint tray.

  • Wear gloves while doing faux painting. It can get a little messy sometimes.

  • On your sample board, practice different faux painting techniques. You might like sponge painting, rag rolling or the faux finish effect created from using a plastic bag. Experiment with a few different techniques to find the type of faux painting that works best for you.

  • When using a sponge, dab the flat bottom edge into the faux painting color and then dab it onto a piece of newspaper or cardboard before applying it to the sample piece. Lightly apply the faux paint to the sample and twist your hand in a circular type motion to achieve the desired faux finish effect. Don't overlap too much for the first coat, just fill in the space. Work in small sections and go from one side to the other until everything looks uniform.

  • When using a plastic bag, lightly dab it into the paint and dab off excess paint. Apply the bag from different angles, but flip the bag around so different sides of it are being applied to it. The type off faux panting gives the walls an interesting look.

  • Repeat the process for the faux finish you've chosen and apply the second coat. The second coat will fill in the areas that were lacking texture. The second will be easier, since you've already found the faux painting technique that you like most.

  • Apply your chosen faux painting technique to the walls now. First, carefully fill in the ceiling lines and around molding or frames. You can tape it off first so you don't get paint on anything.

  • Apply two coats of your faux painting color. Allow proper dry time between coats. Use your faux painting brush to feather out any heavy edges before it dries.

Tips & Warnings

  • Don't think about the faux painting technique too much when you're doing it, just try different ways until you find one that looks best
  • Use faux finish glaze to enhance the drying time, so you can spend more time mastering your faux finish technique
  • Tape off ceilings lines so it's easier to faux finish into them without getting paint on the ceiling
  • Don't start faux painting the walls until you've practiced on a sample first
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