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Faux Painting: Interview with Sandy Silva

Dana Hinders
Sandy Silva, creator of the Triple S Faux Painting Kit.

Faux painting provides a simple way to decorate your home on a budget. Even if you don't have time to paint an entire room using faux finishing techniques, you can use your crafting skills to design faux painted vases, picture frames, or even one-of-kind accent furniture.

Using Faux Finishes to Decorate Your Home

Contrary to popular belief, you don't need to be a professional artist to achieve great results with faux finishes. This form of decorative painting is a simple craft that anyone can enjoy.

Based on her years of experience in the faux painting industry, Sandy Silva has developed the Triple S Faux Painting Kit. This unique kit is ideal for beginners because it comes with everything you need to start faux painting.

  • The instructional DVD features Sandy providing video demonstrations of techniques used for ragging, color washing, and other popular faux painting methods.
  • The special multi color faux palette makes it easier to work with several shades of glaze.
  • The poofy pad can be used for blending multiple colors to create a finish with extra dimension.
  • The tuck and gather tool lets you use sponges and other materials to add texture to your work.
  • If you're not sure how to choose colors that coordinate well together, Sandy provides a complimentary e-book with your purchase that showcases her favorite combinations to use with the faux painting techniques demonstrated in the DVD.

Interview with Sandy Silva

Recently, Sandy Silva was kind enough to take time from her busy schedule to answer a few faux painting questions for the readers of LoveToKnow Crafts.

How did you first become interested in using faux painting to transform the look of ordinary household items?

After using faux painting to add interest to walls, I noticed that other items in the stores such as picture frames, vases, and furniture had a form of faux painting on them.

What are some of the most popular faux finishes used in today's homes?

Old World parchment, faux brick, and faux marble.

How do I know what types of faux finishes will look good with my existing home decor?

I make it a great habit to be observant of faux painted items in the stores when I am shopping. I notice that many picture frames can give me great ideas for faux finishes as well as suggestions for colors that could go with my decor.

A good rule of thumb is if you have solid colored decor, then a somewhat busy faux finish can look good. On the other hand, if your decor has a lot of textured or busy prints, then go with a blended color wash. Usually, it's a good idea to grab some of the colors of your room decor to incorporate in the colors of the faux finish.

What types of items can be painted using faux finishing techniques? Can I repaint some of my current furniture?

Vases, picture frames, table/counter tops, furniture, and even lamp shades can be faux painted. With the proper preparation, any surface can be repainted.

What supplies do I need to get started faux painting?

Paint trays, glazes, paint (acrylic or latex), tape, rags, sea sponges, small plastic bags, chips brushes, an apron, and faux painting books or kits that have instructions for various faux finishes.

How long does a faux painting project typically take?

It all depends on the surface and the type of faux finish you are planning on applying. Simple sponging on a surface can be done in less than an hour, yet adding texture with a color wash on a large vase can take up to two hours. If you want to faux paint your counter tops to look like marble or granite, you may take up to four hours total, considering the time you have to wait between preparing the surface and actually faux painting.

Do you have any tips for correcting mistakes on a faux painting project if you don't want to end up repainting the entire item?

Yes, if you feel the finish is too light or too busy, you can always add another light layer of a color wash over the surface to darken it or blend in some of the texture. If you feel the finish is too dark, you may be able to sponge the base coat on top of the finish to lighten it.

I always recommend practicing on poster board first. Try different things to fix the problem on the board before you attempt to fix the surface or you might make it worse.

I like to go away, if possible, and look at the finish the next day. Many times the finish looks better to me than it did the day before. Show others the finish before you decide that it looks like a mistake. We are our worst critics.

Once I've finished faux painting my item, do I need to add a sealer or top coat to protect it from damage caused by kids and/or curious pets?

That's always the best way to protect them but sometimes it is not necessary. For instance, if you use pure enamel paint, you don't have to use a top coat. Check the recommendations of the company that makes the glaze or paint you are using. Many glazes are very durable and do not require sealing them.

Additional LoveToKnow Resources

If you're looking for tips on stylish and attractive home décor, visit LoveToKnow Interior Design.

Faux Painting Project Gallery

Faux marble - colors tans and browns
Textured vase with a color wash - burgundy, burnt sienna, burnt umber
Faux wood on a cardboard door - brown and black
Faux marble on fireplace - tans
Faux color wash with cracks on cabinets - light tan color
Textured base for lamp with color wash - gold and brown; Faux lamp shade color wash - gold and brown
Faux color wash on a pillow - gold and browns
Faux granite tile - black, green and tan.
Faux Painting: Interview with Sandy Silva