For several years now, I have been doing this faux cement paint technique with a super easy recipe that I came up with that has been a great way for me to change the look of old accessories and decor. It’s a great way to get a true thick cement finish quickly without having to mix a bag of cement. When I say quick, you won’t believe how easy this recipe is and the finish that I get. Better yet, you can do this treatment in any color!
First of all, let me just touch on when you might want to use this type of faux cement paint technique and what type of things you could do this technique on. The possibilities are endless really but this technique is especially great for old wooden boxes, candlesticks, lamps, frames, dated framed mirrors, urns, etc.. Old dated lamps are really fun to do and it’s an amazing transformation!
Again, if you have something that you would love to have a cement finish, this technique works like a charm because when it dries, it’s thick, chalky and cement-y.
I had this large decorative garden type fiberglass decorative urn/finial that I wanted to have a black layered zinc/cement type finish. The finial looked cheap and plastic to me and I wanted to make it layered black and add a cement type finish. Really, this piece is meant for the outdoors and I wanted it to work it into my decor indoors.
This is what it looked like before I started.
This is what it looked like on my dining room buffet when I was finished.
The recipe is really simple! It’s 3/4th part lightweight spackle to 1/4th part tinted primer. You can also mix primer and paint combined for your 1/4th part.
As crazy as it sounds, I have tested several different types of spackle and I have found the best results from Sherwin Williams brand of lightweight spackle. Also, keep in mind that the spackle and primer are white and will dilute your color. I will go at least two shades darker in my color to get the color I want when everything is mixed.
One more thing, black is almost impossible to get by mixing with this recipe because of the white dilution, so if you want real dark black, you’ll need to paint over your base layer or top layer once the faux cement is completely dry.
To get started for this dark gray/black urn, I began by painting the urn black and not starting with the cement mix quite yet like I would normally do. Again, because I wanted the dark black in my layers and the cement recipe would dilute the black to gray, I started by painting the piece black.
I then mixed my spackle and tinted primer in a plastic container (I added more spackle after I took this picture).
Next, I went over the urn with a very heavy layer of the faux cement mix, which was a gray color (I had the primer tinted Sherwin Williams Tricorn Black and this dark gray was the color after mixed with the white primer). It’s best to apply the mix with a foam brush to keep brush marks to a minimum. I also didn’t completely cover the black.
No matter what color you are doing, you will want to work with a dark and lighter shade as you alternate each layer for shading. Cement is not one color but shades of a color, plus, you can better define and highlight any raised areas.
So next, I sporadically went over the urn again with black. Really, I highlighted raised areas with the black and lighting defined.
You can see in this close up picture how I just highlighted and sporadically defined with the black on the raised areas.
The magic really happens after about 24 hours when the cement mix really dries. It takes on that chalky sandy cement finish, which looks just like cement.
If you want to do a traditional light gray/white cement finish, Benjamin Moore Sterling is a good color to use or Gray Owl if you want it slighting warmer.
You don’t need to do any sort of top coat or sealant because the spackle has a bonding agent that hardens the finish. The possibilities are endless with this technique and I hope you guys can use it to turn trash into treasure!
Thanks for stopping by today friends!