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Create a Jewel Box of a Powder Room with Venetian Plasters
 by: Jay Dorman

Oh yes, it’s the tiniest room in our home – and the one that all our guests see, eventually. It holds such potential allure and such realized dread. We want that critical bit of real estate to make a good impression, we want it to be original, we want it to be sexy even – but how? Easy! Let your imagination run free! Be wildly creative! Be daring! A fantasy faux finish is perfect for grabbing everyone’s attention and setting the tone and attitude when those special guests enter that necessary little room.

So many options, so little space! Great, do something unexpected. Faux finishes can be simple and stately, subtly underdone, just a whisper on the wall. But in a powder room, why bother with tried and true when luxurious and exotic is so much more fun? Go ahead and make a statement with the wall treatment. Make your friends and family gasp for the first time in a very long time. It’ll be fun for them and for especially for you.

Ever heard of Venetian Plasters? They are spectacularly rich polished plasters that originated in ancient Rome and migrated to the finest homes in Venice in the 15th century. Those Italians are always painting on their walls and Sistine ceilings.

The original uniquely colored and textured finishes were made with ground lime and marble powders. These days they are acrylic or latex products and are much simpler and versatile to work with for today’s artisans.

And the looks are astonishing. Most commonly, Venetian Plasters are used to produce a polished stone–like look. But with a little creativity on the part of the artist troweling on this plaster, a whole new type of look is possible. The addition of spectacular metallic waxes, plus pearl and iridescent glazes can bring an entire new dimension and surprise to the time-honored beauty of Venetian Plaster.

Did I mention colors for these lustrous plasters? Think inky black, deep chocolate, sapphire blue, blazing crimson, spiritual turquoise. Let your imagination run free -- there are no limitations at all. Any color can be translated into this wondrous medium. Then watch as those metallic (such as: copper, gold, bronze, or pewter) waxes get applied and mysteriously alter the finish in a dynamic new way. The depth of color and variation will astound you and your guests!

Multi-layering of plaster colors is another way to create drama. Applications of two compatible or better still, two contrasting colors can result in something that is truly unique. A tiny dab of brilliant green and a hint of luminous pearl in the sapphire blue and suddenly you have a faux lapis lazuli on your walls.

Even if you opt for the stately single color look of these beautiful plasters without any further embellishments, you won’t go wrong. A highly polished, sealed and waxed plaster finish will stand the test of time and be a wonder to behold. And a huge practical benefit is that the durability and sturdiness of the plaster is perfect for a powder room (or a damp bathroom.)

Challenge a faux finisher to create a finish uniquely attuned to your style. Let your specially chosen artist shine while creating something fresh and new that will elicit awe and joy from everyone who sees it. Even the most staid of traditional interiors has room to a bit more flexible in furnishing that special little room our guests spend but the briefest of moments in. So be inspired and splash some color on those walls.


About The Author

Jay Dorman is the owner of Greystone Artisans, a decorative painting and faux finishing company. This Houston-based company has been in business for eight years and has worked in many of the finest homes locally and in other cities in Texas. This team of talented artists is available for travel to locations outside of Texas, too!

Consultations are available upon request and are at no cost. Hundreds of samples including cabinetry finishes and wall finishes of all types can be seen at our showroom. The showroom, which houses our workroom as well, is open by appointment. Please visit us on the web at:






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