Color Washing

Color washing is such a fun technique and is a great way to either add a pop of color to a neutral piece, or to tone down a brighter color. It is so easy to do, but can really add so much dimension to a piece. Read through the steps below and then grab your materials at either of our store locations or online

  1. Start by painting your piece in the desired base color. For this example, we chose a Paris Grey base. We coated the sample board with two light coats of paint to cover it fully.
  2. Once it dried, we gave a regular coat of clear wax, making sure to wipe off the excess until we were left with a smooth, dry surface.
  3.  We poured some of our wash color (we chose Napoleonic Blue) into a Tupperware container, until the paint was somewhat translucent. A good place to start is a  3:1 paint to water ratio is a good place to start. The more translucent the paint is, the less saturated your wash color will be.
  4. Using a new, clean brush, we applied a light coat of the wash color over the Paris Grey base coat. You may decide you want the color was to be more subtle, which can be achieved by wiping away the color before it dries. It’s entirely up to you!
  5. Once the paint has full dried, which may take a little longer than usual because of the extra water added, we added another light coat of wax to seal the paint.

**Whether you add the coat of wax between the base coat and the wash color will depend on the look your going for. Using wax will seal your base coat and keep the watered down wash coat from pulling it back up to reveal the original color of the piece. There are some pieces love to see the wood come through and others where we like to keep the coverage full. 

Want to see this technique on a piece? Check out this week’s Before & After, which features the work of our Store Manager and Chalk Paint Addict, Christina. 


Happy Painting!

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