Hello again. Glad to have you back. I appreciate you stopping by.
Today I am going to be doing a tutorial on color washing. This is another technique used for layering colors and we all know by now that I love to layer colors. Some people love white. White everything. White furniture, pillows, rugs, decor and yeh it looks pretty when I see the pictures on Facebook or Pinterest, but it’s just not my thing. I love color way too much. I admit, I do have a small obsession with the color turquoise and end up painting with that color a lot, but hey, I love it.
So, yes, I painted the mirror turquoise. LOL. But, I did add some other colors to bring some depth and visual interest to the piece. In a previous post I talked about creating art when you paint. Anyone can slap a coat of paint on a piece of furniture or decor, but I want to create art.
So follow along and I will show you how to do just that.
Clean your piece and prepare it for painting. Select 3 colors of paint which range from a lighter color to a darker color as well as a water based stain. I used CeCe Caldwell’s Paints and her Walnut Grove Stain + Finish. You can see my color selection in the picture below.
Select your base coat color and paint it on. All depending on how liberal you are with your paint you may need only 1 coat, but if not,don’t be afraid to give it a light 2nd coat. Perfect coverage is not needed in this instance because you are going to distress it slightly.
Blow dry or wait until paint dries naturally.
Grab a baby wipe or a wet cloth and rub on areas you want to see some of the gold show through. I didn’t do a lot on this mirror. Once you are done wet distressing grab your blow dryer and dry the wet areas. This will be the only wet distressing you do on this project.
Now take your middle color and add just a bit of water to it. It should still be a paint consistency with just a bit of water added. Meaning the ratio of paint is still higher than that of the water. I used a custom mixed color I had left over from another project. The colors used are Santa Fe Turquoise, Thomasville Teal and Emeral Isle Green. I portioned out about a teaspoon of this paint and then about 1/2 a teaspoon of water and began mixing it.
You will need a dry paper towel or rag for this part. Work in small sections as you apply the paint and then wipe it off. Allow it to settle into the recesses and grooves. Mostly what you are wiping off is on the high points. What this does is essentially tint your base coat and give it a richer color. Kind of like glazing. Work your way around the mirror and once you are done if you see you want to add more in certain areas you can.
This picture shows you what is left after I wiped the excess off. See how it settles into the recesses? That will create some beautiful dimension.
Blow dry or allow to dry naturally.
Take your darkest color and portion it out on a paper plate or bowl and then add water to it. This consistency should be very watery. More so than your previous mixture.
Again, working in small sections repeat the same process as you just did in step 5.
Blow dry or allow to dry naturally.
Grab your water based stain and again working in small sections apply the stain and wipe off the access. I allowed it to sit for about 5 seconds and then I wiped it off. Allow it to get into the nooks and crannies and create depth. What I like about the CeCe Caldwell’s stains is that they already have Endurance built into them so there is no need for me to seal this. Plus it isn’t a high wear and tear piece that is constantly going to be touched. So once you complete this step you are done.
Here is the finished mirror and some close ups.
This technique is a little different from some of my other posts that you see me use Endurance a lot as my barrier between coats and then wet distress. I wanted to show you a different way that you can get some beautiful color layers without using Endurance.
This is a pretty simple technique to create a lot of depth and dimension to your piece. You can do this with ornate pieces such as this mirror or on something that is relatively plain and smooth and give it some interesting visual appeal. This is similar to glazing without using the glaze medium.
I hope you enjoyed this tutorial. Leave any questions or comments below and I would love to see your project transformations using this technique.
Until next time…