Concrete Floor Paint Ideas

Concrete Floor Paint Ideas

Faux marble

For a simple and discreet finish, marble the floor using one base colour, perhaps with a darker shade for veining. For a darker and more dramatic looking marble, use a dark base colour and light veining. For alternating chequerboard squares or inlaid panels choose two contrasting base colours, either very dark and light squares or a neutral background colour combined with a brighter, more vivid hue.

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Find some examples of real marble and copy the colours and the style. Due to the large areas involved, marbling on floors is best kept simple; you are trying to create an impression of the real material rather than a slavish copy. The secret is to get the veining right; once you develop the feel for veining you are almost there.

Oil-based paints make marbling easier. Start by mixing up the base coat as a glaze with 50 per cent scumble glaze and 50 per cent white spirit to the consistency of single cream. For pale grey marble add some white artist’s oil colour or undercoat and mix in thoroughly. Mix in a little ivory black; this is a very powerful colour so add only a little at a time. If the colour seems like a thin black rather than a creamy grey add more white until the balance is right. Check the colour on the floor; samples can easily be cleaned off with a little white spirit.

Paint the base colour over an area about 60cm (2ft) square or, ideally, a whole ‘paving stone’ at a time. Break up the glazed surface with a rag so it becomes mottled. Use artist’s oil paints as veining colour, squeezed onto a plate and diluted with a little white spirit to provide a more workable consistency. A very fine artist’s brush is ideal for veining. Fidget the veins onto the wet glaze; marble has an overall direction and the veins are angular rather than rounded. Veins never stop abruptly, they either gradually fade into the rock or join other veins. Do not overdo the veining. The last thing you want is something that looks like a road map. Dab off any excess paint from the veins with a rag. So that they become blurry at the edges, soften and blend the veins using a hogs’-hair softener, a very fine-bristled brush available from decorating shops, or, if you are on a tight budget, a decorator’s dusting brush. Soften in the direction of the veins first, then lightly against the veins to spread them a little. Finish off by softening with the veins. Allow the paint to dry thoroughly before applying varnish.

Faux limestone

A warm, creamy limestone is the essence of restrained good taste yet can be imitated with paint for a fraction of the cost of the real thing. A floor painted as stone is an imposing yet quiet backdrop that harmonizes well with almost any decorating scheme.

Mix up the base coat as a glaze with 50 per cent scumble glaze and 50 per cent white spirit to the consistency of single cream, using raw sienna and plenty of white undercoat as the colouring, and then add a little raw umber to ‘dirty’ the colour. The objective is to mix a pale yet warm cream. Paint the base colour over an area about 60cm (2ft) square or, ideally, a whole ‘paving stone’ at a time. Stipple the surface to break the colour up into millions of tiny flecks. Use a stippling brush or improvise with a 5cm (2in) brush. Allow the paint to dry.

The second application consists of a light and a dark version of the same colour, to give the ‘stone’ the appearance of age and wear. Use a well-thinned scumble glaze or a diluted oil-based varnish. Mix some raw umber and a little black to create a dirty colour that takes the edge off the cream. Make up two shades of the same colour, one dark and one pale, for a variable effect. Paint random patches of the two colours together and stipple as you did for the first colour. Use a greater proportion of the darker colour where the floor is subjected to greater wear, near a door, for example, for authenticity.

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