DIY faux finish fireplace mantel

faux finishHello Lovelies, happy Thursday! Are you ready for a little DIY on faux finishes? It’s too bad I’m not at all interested in being in front of the camera, because a video would really be a better for you, but here it goes anyways.

A faux finish is nothing to be afraid of. It’s only paint, you can’t hurt anything and the worst-case scenario, you have to re-paint and try again. So, I’m saying if your fireplace is boring and drab,go for it! What do you have to loose, right?

Choose colors that mimic actually stone. For this home, my clients have a creamy brown feel, so I go with creams and browns. A room with more of a gray feel would require, layers of gray, charcoal and a very light gray finish. Stone comes in all colors, even yellow, rust and even gray green.

What you need:
Acrylic flat paint mixed to your desire 3 to 5 different colors
Sea sponges, large and small
Paper towels…lots of them
Blue painters tape
A roll of painter’s paper
Plastic drop cloth 9 x 12
A bucket for water
A trash can or trash bag
Little serving boats (Smart & Final)
A large plastic tray to keep everything tidy

faux finish before paintDrab to fab!

faux finish fireplace 2The first layer is the darkest. You want to push the paint into the crevasses and holes. This way when you add the other layer and whip them off the dark will still show up and pop out. Keep your sea sponge moist to keep the paint moving when you apply it. This layer doesn’t have to look pretty. It just needs to fill the holes and create your base. I use the little boats to blot off excess water and blot on and off paint. Dab your sponge once when you dip into paint. This pushes the paint into the sponge and you wont end up with a big thick spot.

faux finish fireplace 3

IMG_6499The gray layer dulls the surface and starts to make it look more like stone. With a moist sponge swirl the paint on in circular motions and whipe off. Some of the gray will hold and the rest will lift off. This is exactly what you want. Start with the side with the lowest visibility to get the hang of it and work your way around. By the time you finish one coat the place where you started will be dry and ready for more layers.faux finish fireplace gray layer

The final coat is a artistic process, so don’t be afraid. Just keep your sponge moist, not dripping and wipe on wipe off. I take a small sponge and dip each edge into one of the color. For this job, coco on one edge, cream on another and finally a little spot of mustard yellow. Works in small areas, concentrating on treating each seem as a separate stone; not all stones are not alike in color, so the variation is needed. For the deep detail area, swipe on the coco and wipe it off. Move the sponge around; swirl and rub until you see a nice blend of detail and color and wipe off right away. You can always go back over for another layer if you’re not loving the finish.faux finish fireplace details

Let the paint dry and remove the tape and paper.

faux finish end

xoxo, Julie


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