Disclosure: I received paint from Sherwin-Williams as compensation for the post. All views and opinions expressed in the post are my own and no other compensation was provided.
How to Imitate Marble With Paint | Faux Marble Technique
When we were designing our powder room, everything revolved around the marble wall. Sure, I would've loved to fly in a beautiful slab of marble from Italy, but no one has the time or budget for that! So instead of a real slab of marble, I would determined to create the look using just paint. Spoiler alert: it worked!
Alright, let's start DIYing!
Time Commitment: A few hours
- Sea sponges
- Spray bottle with misting setting
- Baby wipes
- Paint for your base
- Paint for your veining
- Extra White SW 7006
- Cityscape SW 7067
- Gray Matters SW 7066
- Passive SW 7064
Since this tutorial is for a marble wall, I will refer to "the wall," but rest assured, you can use this same technique on furniture, countertops, or tile as well.
A. Paint your wall with your base color. I would recommend Extra White SW 7006 for this. It's a bright white that looks great with blues and grays. We ended up painting a total of 3 coats to make the wall look as glossy as possible. Wait for your paint to fully dry before moving onto the next step.
B. Print a picture (or sketch out a pattern) that shows what type of marbling you want to achieve. You might want a very spongy texture or heavy lines. Find a picture that speaks to you and print it out so you can look at your inspiration while painting.
C. Dampen one of your sea sponges. Squeeze out the excess water. You want to get your sea sponge damp so that it is flexible, but you don't want it to be dripping.
Tip: Begin your design in a top corner and work your way down and across, following the direction of your marble pattern.
Choose a technique
Use one of the following techniques to create your marble effect. Each wall will be different, but we used a combination of all three. We mostly worked with a brush for this wall and then added some dark colors using the feathers. We utilized the sponge technique in two areas of our wall.
Option 1: Paint veins
The first option is a brush. This is great for thicker, longer lines. Using a paint brush like the one pictures above, lightly paint a line for your marble. Don't worry about keeping it straight or consistent. Add some bumps along the way and paint with more or less pressure to add more variation.
Option 2: Sponge veins
Lightly dip your sponge in paint, then dab off all of the excess on a paper towel. A tiny bit of paint goes a long way in this technique!
Option 3: Use a feather to draw veins
Use a feather like the one pictured above. This type of feather is stiff enough to produce thin lines. If you use a feather that is too soft, it will be difficult to transfer any paint to the wall. Lightly run your feather along the wall. I liked running a slightly darker color on top of a light line that I already painted with a brush. This will give the look of variation in a single vein.
Regardless of what technique you use, immediately spritz the wall once or twice with water after you add the gray paint. Be careful for drips! If you notice a drip, immediately wipe it off using a baby wipe.
Once you spritz the wall, gently dab the paint with a clean, damp sea sponge. This will soften the lines and help blend it. Keep dabbing until you reach your desired look.
If your sponge left undesired sponge marks, you can wipe the marks using baby wipes. Use baby wipes along the way to clean up any paint that you didn't intend to be on the wall.
Keep painting using a variety of techniques until you have achieved your desired look. I recommend working in small sections at a time, approximately 12" or less. This will ensure that your paint is still very wet and you can blend in lines with water.
There you have it! Now you know how to create the look of marble using paint. And let me just add this. Take this as proof that paint has the power to create so much! See a wallpaper you like, but its $200/roll? Try painting it! Never underestimate the power of paint, it sure can do a lot!
Liked this idea? Check our all of our DIY accent wall tutorials!