Question – How to apply a finish to a stucco wall???

author of Time Crafted 8/30/2010 9:35:44 PM

I have a question (see me raising my hand high?!)!!
How to deal with California highly textured walls and getting a clean edge! 
Okay, that’s more of a frustrated statement/topic than a question, but hope you get where I’m going.
I see so many cool paint treatments and just know they would be a nightmare with my current painting knowledge base; our lovely textured walls (not just the bumpy kind, but the kind where you can look at them and see shapes in all the raised  depressed areas that are highly visible…even with matte paint).
Thanks! :

Heidi’s Reply
Hello Karen,

I assume that your wall is “stucco” thus absorbent, unless it’s painted with eggshell sheen paint.

If that is the case you need to prime your walls first. Then you would apply your eggshell paint finish.The eggshell paint finish will provide a non-absorbent surface, which is necessary for any type of glazing  In your case I would suggest  a color wash or a dry brush technique. Both will give you a subtle glow of all highs and lows.
Dry Brush Technique
Color wash followed by dry brush technique
 Painting a straight, clean and crisp “edge” on a textured wall can be a challenge. Here is a trick I often use. I seal my painters tape with varnish. Just paint varnish on the edge of the tape.You must use the same sheen of varnish as your paint. (satin paint, satin varnish).The varnish runs under the tape thus sealing any spaces. After the varnish is dry you can begin to paint. Once everything is dry remove your tape and you will have a  a very crisp edge.

Dry brush Technique: 



  • Using a 4″ chip brush, load the brush with a small amount of paint.. On a palette (newspaper, cardboard) deposit most of the paint, so you only  have a small amount on the brush, thus dry brush.
  • Move the brush rapidly across the surface. Any direction is required.
  • Brush should be barely filled with paint
  • Use a very light touch

By the way, I have my aspiring faux finishers close their eyes and talk to me when they are applying the paint. This relieves the anxiety and intimidation of the brush.

Color Wash Technique: I found a video which might be helpful to you 

I hope this blog is helpful. Thanks for asking.

Happy Painting



  1. I am trying to get my husband to let me do something like that in our bedroom. I want to make a head board and then do something like that on headboard or maybe a faux slate. I think that technique would work better in our room.

    I will definitely be filing this one away for future use 🙂

  2. love your blog and we found each other through SITS… Now I feel like asking you not sure if it’s the same… but would this apply also to those popcorn celings?

  3. Adriana, thank you so much for stopping by. Greatly appreciated. Thank you also for your question. Unfortunately, this does not apply to pop corn ceilings. If you would like to do something with your ceilings( and I suggest that you do) you need to scrape the ceiling. I realize this is going to be a mess, however you immediately will make your home more desirable. Let me know if you need more help

  4. I love that gold wall…so elegant. Was that a metallic paint you used?


Speak Your Mind