HOW TO RAG PAINT A WALL – Rag painting is a free-hand way to give your walls a real touch of unique style and design. If you like rooms and walls to look totally unique with a style all of your own, then rag painting is a technique that is right for you. Rag painting is so easy and can be applied in just a few minutes or you could get totally immersed and spend hours having fun.
Unlike traditional methods, of painting a wall, there is not a right or wrong way to rag paint a wall. You cannot really make a mistake as each dab and stroke creates its own unique look. Let the kids have a go… It’s a great way of introducing them to painting and decorating a home. In this guide we’ll provide you with some practical information, advice and tips for rag painting the walls in your home.
Rag painting can be a little messy – but let’s be honest a little mess can equal a lot of fun and this is what rag painting is about – fun and creativity. Remove all, or as much, furniture as you can from the room. It is always easier and cleaner to work with no obstacles in your way. You’ll also save yourself from the risk of getting paint on your sofa or other furniture items. Once the room is clear lay down a dust sheet to protect your floor coverings. A good tip here is to use masking tape to secure the duct sheets to the skirting / baseboards to prevent them from moving about – remember, like all painting and decorating jobs, preparation makes the whole job easier, cleaner and quicker.
Clean down your walls thoroughly with a mixture of warm water and sugar soap. Sugar soap is great for removing dirt, grease and grime and you walls need to be free of these if you want to produce a really nice finish. Once you’ve cleaned your walls leave them to dry completely.
Check your walls carefully. Take a walk around and examine each wall and if you spot any holes or cracks then fill these with a ready-made filler and a putty knife. Once the filler is completely dry you can sand this down so that it is smooth using either a fine grade sandpaper or glass paper. Note that if you have any large holes consider using a Wall Patch or if the hole is extremely large then use an Expanding Foam Filler.
The first painting step would be to apply a base coat to the wall. Use an emulsion paint, either white or another light neutral colour works best. The emulsion you use can either be in Silk Vinyl or Matt, the choice is yours. Use a paint roller and give the walls one or even two coats of the base colour. Leave each coat to dry thoroughly before apply any additional coats.
Now that your walls are fully prepared it’s time to look at the rag painting technique. So far you have done all the hard work and now it’s time to have a little fun and creativity. As we mentioned in the opening of this guide, this is a great time to get the kids involved – you simply can’t make any mistakes with rag painting and the kids will have a brilliant time.
Rag painting is best achieved using emulsion paints, either silk vinyl or matt, the choice is yours. You can apply more than one colour, so choose your colour or colours you want and pour a small amount into a roller tray. Get a bucket of clean water and take an old damp rag and make is damp – DO NOT soak the rag – you just want it damp, so be sure to wring it out thoroughly. Scrunch up the rag and dip it into the paint colour you chose. Note in the introduction that we said this can be a messy job – on this note you could wear rubber gloves, but by using emulsion paints this is easy to wash off – the choice is yours.
When it comes to applying the paint you are free to express yourself. Try dabbing, stroking, swirling or rubbing the paint onto the wall with the rag to create patterns that really appeal to you. Rag paint truly is about self expression and few other decorating jobs allow for this, so go wild and enjoy. Don’t worry about making a mistake – you can’t it’s freehand, but if you don’t like the effect you can always go over it. The rule is… Be creative and have fun!
Work your way across your entire wall and once you have finished, stand back and take a look. Add a few more dabs, stroke and swirls until you are completely happy. If you are using more than one colour then let the first colour dry completely before using the next.
Acknowledgements: Video – Expertvillage.com