I am well behind on blogging about my latest work. It's been painting non stop here at Lilyfield Life and I even had to hire my nephew who has just finished his HSC to sand and prime for me (and to clean my shed and organise my tools - it's amazing to be able to find my stuff easily. Let's see how long it lasts!)
Yesterday I tried my hand at painting faux marble for the first time. The first attempt was just passable and from a few metres away it looked okay but close up it was all smudgy and VERY obviously painted. At the 11th hour I decided I couldn't live with it and stripped it back to the bare timber and primed it again and painted it again. Phil took the kids to Christmas carols and I stayed home working but I'm very pleased I did as I am happy with the result.
It also meant I finished all my work for 2013 by lunch time today - save for the references check and drafting up a letter of offer for the recruitment job I've been doing (we've found a wonderful person, yay!). So the kids and I headed to Bronte for an afternoon on the beach. Just beautiful. Why don't I do that more often (more than just the weekends - can I fit more into my days??)
I agreed to painting the faux marble top with some hesitation but really I thought how hard can it be - I've got "google and ""you tube. It'll be okay. Carolyn delivered her table top to me a week ago. It was a reddish timber and I primed it but let it sit for days while I completed other jobs. I was actually fearful of starting! Anyway I finally decided to give it a try. I watched these videos about ten times each. My google search history is full of marble, faux, paint, veining, cararra etc.
and this one in French
I won't list out how I did it as for most of the time I was freaking out full of self doubt. When I get better I will write a tutorial. I'm not a fan of tutorials written by people who've done something once so won't do that myself. I started with my supplies using Drying retarder and a watercolour emulsion to help my paint flow. I also stole a feather or two from our chickens. You are meant to use a goose or swan feather but we have chickens in our backyard and not geese because I hate honking geese; and not swans because my backyard is the size of a postage stamp.
This is my first attempt below. Passable but barely. I made the mistake of doing the background veins in dark grey and not mid grey so it all got too dark and heavy. And also because it's my first attempt and I think you possible need years of practice to perfect this technique.
So last night I stripped it all off and started again. Carolyn was coming first thing this morning so I had time pressure as well. Phil took the kids out and I had a vodka because so many people say to have some alcohol; to relax you before painting faux marble.
Second attempt is much improved.
Here it is on the table top which actually makes it look much more realistic. The table also has a huge black ornate mirror over it.
It looks good but not perfect but at a fraction of the price of cut shaped marble I think it will do.
I am keen to practice this faux marbling technique more. I'm even thinking I should take some lessons if I can find a teacher.
and of course I'm keen to spend more time at the beach.. lucky it's Christmas and summer holidays.
Time to breathe...
I'd love to hear what you think of the faux marble. Love or hate? (or in between).
Have you ever tried to paint it yourself?
Edited to say see it in situ here