The look of marble is unlike any other stone. Its richly colored appearance adds lively elegance to any of its structural surroundings. Attempts to finish a surface in close imitation of this stone’s beauty, or marbling as it is now called, dates as far back as ancient Egypt. It is said the development of marbling was due to the high cost of obtaining genuine marble and the difficulty of transporting it over large distances.

Even in areas where marble was readily available, such as France and Italy, the practice of marbling spread. The strong, compact stone was safe for building when used in a block or column but could not be used for beams or ceilings. For this reason, a faux finish was often used to complete the schemes of marble rooms. Eventually, colors other than those naturally found in marble were used in this process. This purely decorative technique, which allows for great flexibility in the color scheme and can be used where it would be impossible to use real marble, is known as marbleizing.

In just a few steps, you can brighten your own bathroom using this ancient form of interior design. Pratt & Lambert Paints not only offers great products, but also offers Pro FAUX workshops at independent Pratt & Lambert retailers which make adding faux marble look to your home both easy and inexpensive. Pro FAUX presented by Pratt & Lambert is the nationally recognized team of John Catalanotto and Greg Frohnapfel, experts in faux finishing. Pro FAUX ha conducted hundreds of workshops across the country to demonstrate and teach the latest in faux finishing, the hottest trend in home decorating.

Marbleizing Choices Virtually Limitless

To begin your marbleizing project you will need the following materials: Pratt & Lambert Accolade Interior Enamel paint in three values, or variations, of one color; Pratt & Lambert Faux Finishing Latex Glazing Liquid; a one inch sponge brush; a fine-line artist’s brush or feather; a sponge; rags and paint containers. A couple of useful tips to help you complete this project successfully are test your colors and application technique on a piece of posterboard first, before you apply directly to the wall, and keep a piece of real marble handy to use as a visual guide.

Before you go to your local Pratt & Lambert dealer, consider what colors in your bathroom stand out and those you would like to accent. Do you want to use blue to highlight your floor covering or yellow to highlight your linens? Unlike natural marble, which comes in limited colors, the selection of products offered by Pratt & Lambert make the choices for marbleizing your bathroom virtually limitless. For best results, consider using a monochromatic approach using three variations, or color values, from the same paint color strip. Remember, whichever color value you apply last will make the greatest final impression. Completing the project with a darker value will make the room feel fuller and require less furnishings to fill the space. Finishing up with a lighter value will lighten and brighten the room.

Simple Steps Create Exciting Rooms

To begin transforming your walls, apply a base coat of white (or your lightest value). Accolade paint with a roller, allowing it to dry completely. Now mix one part of your darker color value to four parts Pratt & Lambert Faux Finishing Latex Glazing Liquid. Using the one inch brush, apply the darker paint in random, diagonal strokes, allowing a quarter of the base coat to show through. While the darker strikes are still wet, use a sponge or rag to soften and blend them into your undercoat. Allow the paint to dry for approximately four hours.

Repeat the previous step, using either a lighter or darker color value of paint mixed with the Pratt 7 Lambert Faux Finishing Latex Glazing Liquid. When you finish this step, parts of the base paint should still be visible. As you allow the paint to dry, notice how the colors not only blend with each other, but how they blend with the other parts of your bathroom.

Now, look at the sample piece of marble you set aside as a guide. You will notice that the stone seems to have veins. These naturally embedded fracture lines result from changes in temperature and pressure that crystallize the color and fragment the stone. You can imitate these veins by using the artist’s brush or feather to draw fine, splintered lines with your darkest paint. These lines should be random both in their design and their placement.

Use your sponge or rag to add depth to the wall by softening random veins in all four directions. Depending on your tastes, you can add more veins over top of the earlier veins you have already softened. This will serve to enhance the perception of depth and add texture to your surface. Allow the paint to dry for approximately four hours before using the room. Your new bathroom is now complete and as you can see, these techniques require minimal experience and are well worth the time spent. In less than a day, Pratt & Lambert has helped you give your very ordinary bathroom a unique, exciting look that is certain to rival those created in ancient Egypt.