Beautiful Decorative Finishes For Your Home
Decorative finishes, or faux finishes, can add a touch of elegance to your home. Using paint, these finishes create accents and effects that produce a distinctive look. Decorative finishes have been used to beautify buildings for thousands of years, and are still a popular option for creating customized spaces. Today we’d like to talk about some of the many decorative finishes that are popular among today’s home owners.
Trompe l’oleil is a decorative finish that was introduced by the ancient Romans. The term means “trick of the eye” and the technique involves using realistic imagery in order to create an optical illusion that fools the viewer, for example, a window, door or hallway that looks real but is not really there. Trompe l’oleil finishes are fascinating to look at. Check out this gallery of trompe l’oleil images and you’re sure to agree.
During the Renaissance, churches used gilding as a decorative paint finish. This is a technique in which the faux painter adds a thin coating of gold to the surface by applying gold leaf or gold powder. The technique can also be created with silver or bronze leafing.
This technique also dates back to the Renaissance. Marbling is the process of using decorative paint to create the look of marble. This is one of the most beautiful faux wall finishes, adding sophistication and richness to the space.
Another faux painting technique that was revived during the Renaissance was Venetian plaster. This plaster is made from lime putty and crushed marble, then tinted to create a range of different colors. When applied to surfaces it gives a textured look similar to marble or natural stone.
This faux finish gained popularity in the 17th and 18th centuries where it was used in a number of European palaces. Stenciling uses a thin sheet of material with a cut out pattern or image, which is then painted over to recreate that pattern or image on the faux finish walls.
Wood grain is a faux paint finish option that became favored in Victorian England. A wood grain finish recreates the look of natural wood using nothing but paint.
Color washing originated in the late 20th century and became popular in Italy, particularly on Tuscan walls. This decorative paint technique includes using paint thinned with glaze to create a subtle wash, or mix of colors over the wall where brush strokes show through.
A similar faux finish is lime washing, which uses a paint made from lime and water to add a soft, chalky white and textured appearance to walls.
A popular modern faux finish is antiquing, otherwise known as distressing, or creating a weathered look. In antiquing, the goal is to use colors, techniques and accents to make a wall, surface, or piece of furniture look older than it is.
One form of antiquing is called crackle glaze. In crackle glaze you create a weathered look that looks like the surface is aging and cracking. To create this look you paint a base coat, apply crackle glaze then apply a top coat. The crackle glaze will allow some of the base coat to appear, making it surface look cracked.
Sponging and Raging
These forms of faux paint finishes originated in the 1980s. By dabbing wet paint with sponges, or rubbing it with rags, you can create a broken color effect that adds texture and a unique design.
Decorative finishes, both ancient and modern, are still popular today among people who want to match a particular time period, a particular look, or to achieve a unique style. There are a range of faux finishes to consider, so it all comes down to which one will work best in your home.
MB Jessee offers specialty paint finishes including European finishes, faux finishes and custom wall art. Learn more about our decorative finish services here. Visit MB Jessee's profile on Pinterest.