When I first started experimenting with different faux finishes, I thought I needed to Go Bold, or Go Home. Red, purple, burnt orange… those were my go-to colors. My house was psychedelic! I even faux finished my garage! Don’t get me wrong, I still love bold colors, but I’ve learned to use them more sparingly now.
Take my home office. Seven years ago I painted it a cherry red, then put a black glaze on top to give it the look of leather. You can do this glazing technique using a stipple brush, or do what I did and use lots and lots of plastic bags (Yes, the ones you get from the grocery store). I crinkled them up and used them to pound over the freshly rolled on glaze, creating dark and light areas throughout. It took FOREVER…. but the end result was AWESOME!!! Seriously, the pictures do not do it justice. The only problem was, the whole room felt heavy and dark.
When ever people came over, the leather faux finish got me lots of compliments. Of course, these were people who didn’t have to spend too many hours in this dark red room. But after all the work I did to create the effect I wanted, I wasn’t about to paint over it. That’s when I saw a picture in a magazine that gave me an idea. I could tone down all the red by creating faux wainscoting on the lower portion of the wall. Luckily, my husband was on board with the plan and executed it beautifully. All I had to do was paint the faux wainscoting a lighter color, and all of a sudden I could feel the room’s heaviness lift.
I even painted three faux panels on the upper portion of one of the walls. This too, took a tremendous amount of time because of all the measuring, leveling and taping, but I believe if you’re going to do something, do it right.
I’m happy with the way it turned out, but I always keep that in mind when I’m painting other people’s homes. When they want a bold color, I suggest limiting that color to just one wall. That way it makes a statement, without being too much. Here’s a perfect example of how red goes a long way.
In this living room, I painted one wall red, and even painted the niche on top of the fireplace red. Bring in some red accent pillows, and trust me, that’s all the red you need. So forget “Go Bold, or Go Home.” If you go too bold, you may not want to go home!