Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Modern Coastal: DIY Project 2

"Who lives in a pineapple under the sea?
Not Me! 
 The ocean makes me feel claustrophobic and don't get me started on that movie Open Water-my worst nightmare ever! I am content to putter around on top of the water enjoying the sea life at a distance that allows me to swim away fast. And then take a nice deep swim in a clean chlorinated   pool. 
While there are many beautiful exotic things to see under water, there are equally lovely items to enjoy on land in Hawaii. One of these are native Hawaiian quilts.
The patterns are very graphic and rendered in high contrast bold colors.  Many incorporate palm and pineapple inspired shapes.  These are the starting point for my next DIY finish.
I am going to use foil. The biggest complaint I read/hear/dream about foil is the foil is not off-loading.  Foil can be "bad" but it is really just bad for our use which is not for heat-setting (it's intended purpose).  And usually it is not the foil size that is a problem unless it is a timed size.
Most of the time the issue is the surface. Think about your sample surface. It is probably polystyrene and very smooth and very sealed. Most walls are not smooth and marginally sealed.  A rolled paint surface leaves a little stubble that will telegraph through on a foil finish.  Two coats of size and/or two coats of foil work not because of stickiness but because you are filling in the sub-straight texture with each layer.
I like to trowel a quick coat of Venetian Plaster for a base. It is opaque, dries fast, gives me a color layer, is well-sealed, and adds visual interest. What's not to love?  Yes you have to buy the product and trowel a layer but compare that to the cost of rolling size, applying foil, rolling size, applying foil, rolling...
At least this guy is having fun chasing his tail.
I started this project by troweling a coat of Black Onyx Venetian Gem in a single high/low coat.  Venetian comes in many pre-tinted options giving you and your client lots of color options.

The easiest thing to make troweling Venetian Plaster enjoyable (besides using a nice creamy one like Venetian Gem) is to keep your blade clean as you work:
You get busy with the application and let the product begin to dry on your blade. This will create lines in your plaster. Use a Japan Blade to scrape off product. If you do this frequently as you work you may reapply the wet scrapped material to the surface. If the material on your blade is leather dry you need to dump it in the trash.  This layer should be dry within an hour.
Next, I rolled Wundasize 100% over the dried Venetian Plaster.  It will look blue while wet.  I use a black foam roller-less bubbling-and really roll it out. It is not like crackle size that will lift if you overwork it.  For this finish the set time is only 30 minutes because I am applying a pattern before the foil.

My pattern is the Corsini Damask Stencil from Royal Design Studio because it reminds me of the quilts I saw on Maui.  The stencil will stick nicely to the Wundasize.

I used a black foam roller and rolled Queen Anne's Lace Lusterstone over the pattern.  This color is a soft warm grey.  I like using Lusterstone in this application because it dries fast allowing me to repeat my pattern quickly. Lusterstone also comes in many colors so it is easy to find shades a client will love.

Next I placed Moonstone Pewter Foil with the silver side facing up over the pattern and scrubbed with a scrub brush.  The foil will only off-load around the pattern where the size is not covered by the Lusterstone.

The foil will also pick-up the highs and lows of the Venetian Plaster layer making the finish look more worn.
To age the finish, I mixed 2 parts FX Thinner + 1part American Walnut Stain & Seal + 1/2 part Antique Pine Stain & Seal.  I brushed this over the surface and spritzed with a water bottle before padding with a dry cloth.
The Lusterstone will take the stain harder then the foil-which is fine and adds to the finish.  The stain warms up the overall look.
 And that's the finish.
This would be really pretty in a bump out in a dining room or in a powder room.
Next time I will show you a simple way to create a coastal weathered wood.
And, just so you know. The best pineapples are not found under the sea....
They are found floating in a glass!


  1. Beautiful and so easy, but creates a statement. Thank you Rima

  2. Thanks for checking it out! I will post Part 3 tomorrow.