Introduction: Rustic Paint Layering Accent Wall

Accent walls are all the rage right now, but a rustic wood accent wall, can easily cost you thousands! That is unless you aren’t afraid to get your hands dirty, because there are tons of ways to get a beautiful accent wall, without paying an arm and a leg for it. So, today we are going to start with one method that you can use to dress up or accent an already existing wood wall.

*Check out the full DIY blog by Mandy Richardson, Owner and Lead Designer at Wine and Sawdust Designs, here.Etsy Store.

Step 1: Site Preparation and Paint Medium Selection

This project was constructed with reclaimed wood paneling that was sent through a planar and attached to the interior wall studs.

  • Sand entire surface area to remove debris, old stains or finishes, and to prepare any new surface area to receive the first medium.
  • Wipe down entire surface with a dry towel to remove sawdust
  • Wipe down entire surface with Mineral Spirits to remove any remaining loose debris.
  • Choose stain colors for Step 2. Recommended: Gray or Black Stain (Dark stain), Natural Stain (Used for Blending), and 2 or 3 other Medium colored stains (Used to blend entire stain step).
  • Choose 2 or more Accent colors in Chalk or Latex paint. Colors should match or accent the décor of the space.
  • Choose 1 Main Paint color in Latex Paint, inexpensive. This color will be the main focal color of the wall. Please make sure that you consider that. Also, it can be inexpensive, because we will cover the entire project in Polyurethane. (Paint not pictured below, but was a basic Walmart brand White Latex Paint. Flat or Satin, no gloss.
  • Choose a Polyurethane finish that will compliment your finished piece. Suggested: Satin

Step 2: Applying and Blending Stain Colors

  • Apply Dark Stain with a staining pad in a wavy pattern, transitioning from the top to the bottom of the board. Ensure that you apply extra Dark stain to areas that you would like to add depth to in the finished project, for instance, flaws in the wood.
  • Before the Dark stain dries, using a new staining pad, use the Natural stain to help blend the rough edges of the dark stain into the wood.
  • Using separate staining pads, apply the Medium stains to each board one after the other, allowing them to blend into one another, and into the Dark stain.
  • Allow the wall to dry according to the instructions on your stains, but a minimum of 24 hours is recommended.

Step 3: Accent Colors

  • Apply the first color of chalk or latex paint, using a medium sized brush, in sections across each board. Allow some of the sections to touch, but leaving space for the other accent colors.
  • Apply the second color of chalk or latex paint, using a separate medium sized brush, in the "empty" sections across each board. Allow some of your second paint color to overlap your first, while leaving space for any other accent colors.
  • Repeat this process until all accent colors are on wall.
  • Allow 24 hours minimum for drying.

* Allow each paint layer to dry for an hour or two before adding a new layer.

Step 4: All-Over Coverage

  • Apply Main paint to the entire wall/project.
  • Depending on coverage, apply a second coat to entire wall/project after first coat has been drying for an hour or two.
  • Allow wall/project to dry for a minimum of 24 hours.

Step 5: Sanding

  • Prepare a Mouse or Rotary Sander with 80-grit Sandpaper.
  • Check the wall/project for tackiness. If there is any tackiness at all, allow the project a longer drying time.
  • Start sanding at the bottom of the wall, or a hard to see area of the project.
  • Lightly sand across each board. Do your best to not remain in one area for too long, because it will cause smudges and clumping.
  • If you sand too much of any area, it can be repaired by repeating Steps 1-4.
  • Wipe down entire surface with a dry towel to remove sawdust
  • Wipe down entire surface with Mineral Spirits to remove any remaining loose debris.

Step 6: Finishing Touch

  • Using a medium-sized, high quality bristle brush, apply the Polyurethane of your choice to the entire wall/project
  • If wall/project will be in a high traffic area, add a minimum of two layers.
  • Allow to dry for a minimum of 24 hours before touching, and allow for the proper amount of cure time before doing any other work to the wall/project.
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