Thursday, July 31, 2008

Faux Fade Paint Finish

I found the above pictures on a site called The Art Department. The company was founded by Cindy Chin in 1988. The name comes from the wide variety of services that they offer.

The fade finish is one of my favorites, but really, I have many favorites.
I love the fade finish, because you can use any color combination from monochromatic colors to an assortment of different colors blended and faded into each other.

This finish was done by a company called Red Canary out of Wisconsin.
A blending effect was used to connect the 2 colors. This would also be considered a fade finish.

You can use almost anything to blend the colors, but the Woolie is my favorite. Be sure to mix your colors with glaze and use that to do the blending between colors.

Click the image to order The Woolie!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Aged Wall Finish

Isn't this finish gorgeous? I love how they incorporated the verdigris green of the doors into the wall finish. It was done by Stephanie Tyree of Atlanta Faux Finish. Click the link to go to her site and check out more of her fabulous faux finishing work.
An aged wall finish is a great way to add a comfortable and lived in feel to any space. This finish can be achieved using almost any color.

I am not exactly sure how this artist achieved the above finish, because every faux finisher has their own special techniques, but I might use a rag or even cheesecloth to blend colors, adding darker tones in some areas and leaving other areas lighter where the base color would show through. Notice in the above picture that there were several different colors used. This finish would be great in a powder room - a great place to experiment for you do it yourself-ers!

My best bit of advice to anyone attempting to do any finish on their own, is to try your colors and technique on a sample board first. Happy Painting everyone!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Car Themed Mural Ideas for Boy's Room

My son LOVES the movie CARS. Here is a mural depicting a scene in the movie with the sheriff.
My favorite part of this race car mural is the RPM odometer above the bed - how creative!
I love the depth and dimension on this one! Notice the helicopters in the distance.

This one is of a scene in a James Bond movie. Very cool!
Here, the bed is actually a part of the mural. It looks like it is racing up the painted road, trying to catch up to the car ahead of him.
This is a great one. I love a classic car!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Beginner Guide to Creating Faux Brick

Debra Conrad, aka "That Painter Lady" has become a good friend of mine over the past few months. I have been helping her write articles for her website She has put together an easy to understand how-to video on painting faux brick. I just wanted to share it with you.

Here are a few short video clips of what she is offering on her dvd.

Click Here to Order the DVD

Sunday, July 20, 2008

How to Paint a Mural with Little or No Experience

A mural is a wonderful way to allow a child's imagination to blossom and grow.

This process can be pretty easy, even if you don't have the painting talent that you think you might need. All you need is the right tools.

  • Overhead Projector
  • Clear Acetate Sheets
  • Paint Brushes - a few good quality ones ranging in size
  • Drop cloths
  • Acrylic paints (I often use craft paint because you can get them in ANY color)
  • Bucket for water to rinse brushes between colors
  • Paper Towels (to wipe wet brushes on)
  • Matte Medium or Glaze (this makes the paint thinner and more movable)
As an artist, one of my favorite items is my overhead projector. I use it to project an outline drawing onto the wall of what I am going to paint. I also use it for placement to figure out where exactly I want something to be and what size I want it to be. This is a trick of the trade, that would help you tremendously. They can be expensive, so you might want to look into renting one.

Click Here to purchase: 3M Model 1711 Overhead Projector

If you are new to mural painting, I would suggest choosing a simple design, with little detail and shading. This will be less complicated when it comes to painting.

Here are a few simple steps to follow:

1. Reference Pictures - This is very important when painting a mural. It will help you to have something to look at while doing the mural. Use the pictures as you work. I like to use painter's tape and tape them up right where I am working so I can see what I am supposed to be painting.

2. Background - Start with the background (landscape, trees, etc.) If you are painting a large space - grab a couple quarts of latex paint and block in and blend your colors with a large 4" brush.

3. Outline - Use a projector for this. Pencil in your outline lightly onto the wall. If your base is dark, you can also use chalk.

4. Painting - Slowly and carefully fill in the outlines of whatever you are painting. You can use the glaze or matte medium to mix into the paints if you need them to be more fluid and movable.

If you still feel like you don't have what it takes, then there are several companies that produce murals that you can actually put up like wallpaper. There are others that use removable stickers which do not damage when taken down. Here are a few examples of what you can find:

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Bathroom Faux Finish Ideas

All the pictures below are of bathrooms that I have done over the years.

A bathroom or powder room is a great place to try out a faux paint finish. Because a bathroom is not a main living space and you only spend a limited amount of time there. Why not try something bold and daring like painted stripes or an allover stencil pattern? You don't need to stay safe by choosing neutral colors to complement the tile and fixtures. Try a color that will stand out and bring life and energy.

Here is a marble finish that I did with 3 different shades of color.

This is a soft sponge wash finish.

I LOVE painted stripes! I used 3 different colors, but I did one stripe in a gloss finish.

This is one of my favorite bathrooms. I did all the cabinets, trim, and mouldings. I did an antique finish and finished the off the room by painting the walls a deep olive green. Gorgeous!. Click here to see more pictures.

This last picture is of the old world plaster finish. This finish can be done in any color. Click here to learn more about this finish.

Check out these great books on bathroom remodeling:

The Bathroom Book: The Ultimate Design Resource for the Home's Most Essential Space

Idea Wise: Bathrooms

The Complete Guide to Bathrooms: Ideas & Projects for Building & Remodeling

Friday, July 18, 2008

Daycare Mural Ideas

I think that every Daycare and Childcare Center should have something fun and inviting painted on their walls. This gives a great impression to both child & parent. A mural can bring an element of excitement and anticipation. It can bring comfort and rest. It all depends on what theme you choose. Pick something soft and calming for a daycare nap time room. Pick something bright and full of life for a daycare playroom or lunchroom.

Here are a few mural theme ideas for different rooms:

  • Jungle
  • Alphabet (great for the reading space)
  • Animals
  • Planets & Space
  • Shapes & Colors (great for the craft space)
  • Under the Sea
  • Garden & Flowers
  • Sun, Moon, & Stars (great for the nap time space)
Even if your daycare does not have separate rooms, you can use murals to separate each section. A good muralist will know how to do this, so make sure they show you samples of their work and provide you with a preliminary design.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Butterfly Mural Ideas

Here are a few butterfly murals to inspire you. Any of these would look adorable in a little girl's nursery or bedroom.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Winnie the Pooh Mural Ideas

Here are a couple cute Winnie the Pooh murals - great ideas for any child's bedroom, playroom, or nursery. Enjoy!

Friday, July 11, 2008

Hand Painted Furniture - Pictures, Tips & Ideas

Here are a few step by step instructions on how to paint a piece of furniture:

Prepare work area - Place the furniture on a drop cloth in a ventilated area.

2. Prepare Furniture Piece - Remove hardware (drawer pulls, etc)

3. Sand - with fine-grit sandpaper to scuff the surface and prepare it to be painted. Wear gloves, safety goggles and a dust mask.

4. Clean off dust - Remove any residual sawdust with a damp rag (don't wet the wood) or tack cloth. You can also use a hand vacuum or brush.

5. Prime - Apply a coat of water-based primer. For smaller pieces, you may be able to use spray primer. The primer usually dries within 1 to 2 hours. Read the directions on the container. If the primer coat looks spotty or thin, apply a second coat and allow it to dry.

6. Base Coat - Add a coat of water-based paint. Brush or roll it on with even strokes, going in the direction of the wood grain. With spray paint, make slow passes with the can 8 to 12 inches from the wood surface. Allow the first coat to dry. Add a second coat and allow it to dry overnight.

7. The Fun Part - You can now start your decorative painting and/or faux finishing.

8. Last Step - Seal the piece with a water based varnish or polyurethane.

Check out these Great Resources on Painting Furniture:

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