Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Random Acts of Glitter

I spy with my sparkly eye more Glitter....
Even Betty's got Bling!
Well there you have it. From babies to the Queen, Glitter reigns supreme. Hey, that would make a good t-shirt saying-in rhinestones of course!
For my finish today, I am adding glitter to fine mica and Aquawax. Another option for putting some sparkle cleanly in a finish.
I started with a Silver background-The new Metallic Setcoat in Gunmetal is a good choice. Another option is a quick troweled layer of Palette Deco Silver. Then I buttered my blade first with Weathered Bronze Lusterstone which I popped on with a flat trowel.  While this is wet, I repeated the process with Charred Gold Lusterstone.
On a wall, I pop in my colors in 2ft x 2ft sections before using my blade to gently flatten the peaks and blend.  You want to hold the blade at a 45 degree angle and pull it up and down and sideways.

I mixed our Bright Gold Glitter with Faux Effects Silver Mica Powder and Easy Leaf Nu Antique Gold Mica Powder.  The Powders are mixed together in equal parts, 1 cup each.  The amount of glitter depends on how much bling you want in the end.  To my powder mix (which is one pint) I add a quart of Aquacreme.  Stir well and tight trowel over the dried Lusterstone.
Spritz the surface with water as you work. This will move the powder better and actually creates interesting effects as the water reacts with the powders.
You will see more of the glitter as this layer dries down. I just captured some of the glints of the gold sparkle. Someone needs to invent an app for that-I mean I have an app that captures ghosts on my I-phone so why not glitter?
This makes a pretty and quick finish. It is also a great base to bump-up the bling for a feature wall or adjoining room.  I mixed some of the Antique Gold Leaf (1/2 cup) with 1 pint Aquawax. Then I added more glitter being heavier handed with the glitter this time.
I rolled this mix over Wallovers' Textile Stencil.
In the finish below, I started with Charred Gold and Rhino Lusterstone applied in the same technique as above.  I added Turquoise glitter to Sea Spray Metal Glow and rolled this over Royal Design Studios Donatella Damask Stencil.

The applications with glitter are almost endless. I will post some more DIY bling ideas in the future! Because once you start working with it, it is hard to wash walk away from glitter!

Friday, May 23, 2014

All that Glitters...with Lusterstone

I have a confession to make...I was not a Glitter Girl until my 40's. It wasn't until I found a way to incorporate my more tomboy tendencies with some sparkle....
that I went full-on bling!
 Look how cheerful I am to be running 6.2 miles in 90 degree heat.
That is the power of glitter!
Now whenever I run a big race, I always wear a sparkly skirt.
Even my tiara is glitter...is there any other kind?
My finish today uses glitter in Lusterstone. This is the easiest way to apply subtle glitter in a non-messy form.  I started by troweling the New Nu'Villa Plaster from FE. I will be glad when this is not new because New Nu'Villa doesn't roll off the tongue.  As I trowel a section, I roll through with our Threads Specialty Roller. This is not wallpaper printing so I roll it up and down several times.
As the Nu'Villa sets up, I use an almost flat blade to compress the texture slightly.
Nu'Villa is a relatively inexpensive way to create an interesting background for under $50 a gallon. On top of the Nu'Villa plaster, I skimmed a tight coat of Palette Deco Silver plaster.
When you tight pull one plaster over a textured base, you will get chatter. See those little cross hatch marks?
This is chatter. To get rid of it, just chase across your surface with a folded cotton rag or terry towel.  It can be barely damp but not wet.
I brushed on a glaze mix of  1 pint FX Thinner + 2 TBSP Van dyke Brown Stain & Seal + 2 TBSP American Walnut Stain & Seal.  Use a damp cloth to soften and remove some of the glaze.
You could stop right here with the finish and have a great look. In fact this makes on easy 3 step treatment for a ceiling to compliment the next few steps.
For a wall finish, mix fine silver or hologram silver glitter into Silver Taupe Lustersuede.  One 5.5oz glitter bottle is plenty for a gallon. Use a Japan blade to pull this tightly over the dried glaze. Use your rag or terry towel to soften the chatter lines.
For smaller rooms or an accent wall, I am using Silver Taupe Lustersuede mixed with Hologram Silver and some Black Glitter.
I am rolling my glitter Lustersuede over Cutting Edge's Acanthus Leaves.  If I wanted more glitter to show, I could mix twice the amount of glitter with Lusterstone Tint Base.
Now you have 3 ways to coordinate spaces. The Base with no Lustersuede. Glitter Lustersuede over the texture (or without added glitter), and a Glitter Lustersuede Pattern over the base. I guess you could add a 4th finish and pull the Glitter Lustersuede over the base and then apply a glitter pattern too. Now we are getting crazy!
This is Silver and fine Turquoise glitter added to Lusterstone Tint base and pulled over foiled Venetian Plaster.  The Royal Design Stencil is Highlighted with Rich Gold Sharkskin.  I love Acanthus Designs-they always sell well!
Here is a close-up. The base is Tiger Eye's Venetian Plaster with Teal and Bronze Foil.
Glitter for base. Glitter for topcoat. Glitter for patterns.
Glitter...it's what's for winners!

Thursday, May 22, 2014

All That Glitters...with Sandstone

Because the client will call you to get that stuff off their floor, the sofa, and the cat.
Although kids don't seem to mind it.
There are ways to incorporate glitter into your finishing that won't leave you looking like a MAC ad and the client's home topped off like a cupcake. Oh yum..cupcakes with sprinkles...
OK...back to our story.  One of the products that I like to use with glitter is Sandstone.  This might not seem like a good choice since Sandstone is a thick plaster but when it is whipped with some water and glaze medium, Sandstone is a great base for several additives.  The natural light color doesn't compete or obscure the glitter. And the added water plus glaze makes the sandstone creamy to trowel.
To a gallon of Sandstone, I add 1 cup Aquacreme and 1 quart of Water.  Then mix with a drill whip. You can always add more water to form a nice creamy paste.  My sample is applied over a tan Setcoat mix (3 parts Neutral White and 1 part Camel).  Setcoat will stick to paint but test on a sample board coated with the paint.  When in doubt, you can put Clear Setcoat (Aquaseal) over a previously painted finish.
After flat troweling an area, I use a Japan Blade to butter my blade and pop in areas of more Sandstone. This creates more texture in one step-saves going around the room again.
Then gently use your blade, almost flat to the surface to lightly compress the peaks.  The Sandstone should dry in 1-2 hours. The Aquacreme will slow this down some.
I took some of my whipped Sandstone and mixed it with our Deep Blue Glitter.  You want to mix in enough so you clearly see the glitter.  One 5.5oz container will be enough for a half-gallon of Sandstone.
I selected a Diamond Harlequin pattern from Cutting Edge Stencils for this sample-I like the classic (almost nautical) look of the blue with the natural plaster.  Apply the mix over the stencil using a Japan Blade.

You can control how much of the glitter shows be simply sanding over the pattern with a sanding block.  With a light sand you will reveal more plaster without creating much dust or spreading the glitter.


This is the finish with the Sandstone left natural. One thing about Glitter-it is hard to capture the shimmer in a picture!
I mixed some of the Aquacreme I used to thin the Sandstone with some Dark Brown Faux Creme Color. Brush on and wipe with a damp cloth. I like to spritz with water to push the glaze into the texture and ten use a dry cloth to remove the glaze from the top.

Want over-all bling? Dump the glitter into you Sandstone mix and trowel this as your base. For the finish below I used a fine silver glitter for the base Sandstone. Sanded it and then lightly glazed with the Dark Brown glaze.  For the pattern (also Cutting Edge), I mixed in the real Silver Glass Glitter and troweled it over the pattern. When it was dry, I sanded the pattern and then glazed the whole surface again.  Spritz with water as you glaze to keep the pattern from getting dark and hiding/dulling the glitter.
Still not blingy enough?  Add mica flakes to your Sandstone with glitter.  These come in several colors to coordinate with a finish-I am partial to the Gold and Black Mica Flakes.  Trowel this as your base and then use a clear plaster like Aquawax or Palette Deco mixed with more glitter for your pattern.
This pattern is from Royal Design Studios.  I mixed Aquawax with Bronze Glitter and Black micro beads from Michael's. The beads are denser then the glitter so when you trowel them they collect at the edges creating a cool shadow effect!

Next time, I will show you how to add glitter to some of my other favorite plasters. Till then...



Tuesday, May 20, 2014

All that Glitters...First an up-date and then a primer

Yes, I know it has been months since I posted.  But, I have some really good reasons. 
 First, I taught a class in Ohio.
And then I taught a class in Texas.
Next I went on a boat for a few weeks.

No! Not that boat. This one:
And, yes, I should get extra points for agreeing to even come home.
But I did make it back, and now I have some time to talk with you good people.
So let's talk about

Bling has made a statement in wall finishing for a few years now, starting with heat-set foils.
Then leading paper manufacturers such as Maya Romanoff (who passed away this year) revolutionized the use of glitters and beads on wall coverings. Even the most traditional homeowner seems open to sporting a little glitz. And we have more types of glitter, in style, color, and size to offer clients.
Ask someone who knows

about the transformative power
of a good glitter job!
So...What is Glitter?
Glitter is small  particles that reflect light at different angles causing the surface to sparkle or shimmer.  Not to be confused with sequins:

or confetti:
Glitter has been made for centuries from materials such as malachite, mica, and glass. When German Glass Glitter became scarce during World War II, American Henry Ruschmann ground plastics into glitter. Most glitter today is made of flat plastic sheets of aluminum, titanium dioxide, iron oxide, and bismuth oxychloride (thanks wikipedia).
This is clear ceiling glitter made from non tarnish aluminum.  This is coarse with a squared shape you will feel on a surface but is very sparkly and cheap. It only comes in this color and may be purchased from a hardware store.
Next, is real glass glitter from Ceroglass.  It comes in a limited amount of colors (I mostly use the silver). Cero will treat this so the color doesn't tarnish when mixed with product. I prefer a size no bigger then .30-.60mm.  Even at that size, you will feel the glitter on the surface. And it can wedge under the skin like a splinter. Sizes can go up to something you would put in a fish bowl. Glass glitter has a lovely vintage look to it. Think about your Grandma's Christmas Ornaments-the ones she gets really pissed at you for breaking. 
Several art and craft supply stores also carry glitters. I've found two kinds. The first is Tinsel Glitter.
Tinsel glitter has a nice fuzzy appearance and also a vintage feel-it was popular in 1950's decorations.
Tinsel Glitter to me always looks like Lurex Yarn, see the sample below:
Our Lady of Perpetual Homemaking, Martha Stewart even has a name brand Tinsel (and regular) glitter. This is a Champagne Glitter from Michael's.

It is a nice fine size which makes it easy to mix with products for troweling or rolling. It is inexpensive and comes in several colors.  When left mixed with product some of the more bold colors might bleed into clear product, for example a wax. This glitter doesn't have the reflective qualities of a laser cut glitter.

The samples below are silver glass glitter and the laser cut glitter we carry here. This color is Hologram Silver.  It is a very fine (finer then ground pepper) and very reflective.

This is a Hi-light Glitter on my hand. The Ultrafine texture makes it great for troweled applications because it doesn't tear the material and dries fairly flat on the surface. This will not cut you.
These are some of the colors we carry at Surfaces and the type I will be using in Part Two, Glitter DIY projects. The colors won't bleed into product or tarnish with prices from $4.95-$5.95.

Laser Copper, Laser Pastel Pink, Hologram Gold, Laser Red, and Hi-light Rainbow.
We decided to package them in 5.5oz shakers

Because we learned, once you invite glitter into a house, just like a Vampire, it is impossible to get rid of!
Maybe that is why he sparkles?
Any hoot...That is why tomorrow I'm going to show how to apply glitter in the cleanest ways possible! No blowing allowed.