COLORWASH is a popular and widely used technique for creating a beautiful, soft bloom
of broken color with far greater depth than plain, flat painting. Equally effective on furniture and walls, it is a simple finish with classic appeal that lends itself to both modern and traditional settings. Above all, it is a relatively quick and easy way to give kitchen
doors a face lift at very little cost. Here we introduce deep, rich berry tones, with a
repeat stamp motif in gold, and a brown shadow. The soft beauty of this design in these colors will add a warm and welcoming glow to kitchens large and small.
RED NON-ABSORBENT MATTE LATEX PAINT, DR RED
STANDARD MATTE LATEX PAINT
BROWN STENCIL PAINT
G OLD STENCIL P A INT
RED WATER-BASED UNIVERSAL TINTER
2 IN (50MM) SPONGE ROLLER
S MALL ROLLER TRAY
2 SMALL STAMPS ON CLEA R PLASTIC MOUNTING
FINE-GRAD E SANDPAPER (FOR A WOODEN DOOR)
MATTE ACRYLIC VARNISH
Colorwash is ideally suited to solid wood and fiberboard doors, but will also work on melamine, vinyl, or laminate surfaces. Prepare the surface following the instructions on pages 6-9. Use an acrylic or melamine primer, or an acrylic converter (according to door type) and tint with eight to ten drops of red universal tinter, to produce a red-toned primer. Apply a thin, even coat to the door, and allow to dry fully. Apply a second coat. Again, allow to dry fully. Sand between coats on a wooden door only using fine-grade sandpaper.
2. PAINTING THE BASE COAT
Apply two even coats of red matte latex paint to the door, allowing plenty of time for
drying in between. Use a non-absorbent matte latex paint, or, if unavailable, seal
a standard matte latex paint with a coat of matte acrylic varnish to make the surface
non-absorbent. Sand between coats using fine-grade sandpaper on a wooden door
only. Allow a full 24 hours for the paint to cure before applying the colorwash.
3. APPLYING THE COLORWASH
Working on one door at a time, pour approximately 1 tbsp (15ml) of mulberry colorwash onto a decorators’ sponge.
Use the sponge to wipe the colorwash onto the door in swirling figure-of-eight movements, until completely covered.
Make sure that there are no gaps in the colorwash.
4. SOFTENING THE COLORWASH
Immediately take the hog-hair softener and brush softly over the colorwash in light, sweeping crisscross movements, softening and blending the wash.
The glaze will quickly become sticky, so you need to work swiftly at this stage. Allow to dry for at least 12 hours.
Apply a coat of matte acrylic varnish with a varnish brush, gliding it onto the surface.
This seals the colorwash and makes the surface wipeable, a life-saver if you make a mistake during the stamping process. Allow to dry thoroughly.
To add extra depth to the color, apply another colorwash following the instructions in steps 3-4; varnish again to seal.
6. MARKING UP FOR STAMPING
Small repeat motifs are an effective way to introduce a pattern that won’t dominate the overall effect. Measure the outer panel of the door and mark the position of the stamping repeats with small pencil dots at regular intervals.
Measure and mark the inner panel so that the stamp is repeated between two and three times on each line, creating a diamond repeat pattern. For our design, we used the flower part of the stamp for the outer panel, and both the flower and stem sections of the stamp together for the inner panel.
7. INKING UP THE STAMP
Pour some brown stencil paint into a small roller tray. Work a 2 in (50mm) sponge
roller forwards, backwards, and across the paint until it is evenly distributed on the
Roll the paint evenly onto the stamp. Do not overload the stamp, as this
will cause the paint to bleed and smudge when you press it onto the surface.
TRADE SECRETS: When painting a melamine or vinyl surface, be sure to leave adequate drying time between coats. Doing so will enhance the bonding process, making the finish more durable.
8. FIRST STAMPING-THE SHADOW
Press the stamp onto the surface, positioning it centrally on one of the pencil dots. Continue inking the stamp and printing in the same way, until you have covered all of the
Stamp the inner panel first, starting at the top left-hand corner if you are right-handed, or at the top right hand corner if you are left-handed, to avoid smudging.
Then stamp the pattern onto the outer panel. Allow to dry thoroughly.
TRADE SECRETS: The stamp must be pressed firmly down perpendicular to the surface, or the edges of the image may turn out fuzzy. The best way to ensure a straight image is to stand directly behind the stamp, not to the side of it- this will help you
line it up with maximum accuracy.
9. SECOND STAMPING-THE HIGHLIGHT
Clean and dry the roller and stamp. Ink up the stamp with gold stencil paint. To highlight the shadow below, place the stamp slightly to the right of the brown stamped motif
already created- the clear plastic mounting of the stamp will make a good registration guide. Repeat over all of the previous stamping, and leave the paint to dry thoroughly.
Varnish the door with two coats of matte acrylic varnish, allowing the first coat to dry thoroughly before applying the second.