When It’s Time To Say Au Revoir To Orange Peel Textured Walls.

When It’s Time To Say Au Revoir To Orange Peel Textured Walls.

I’m guessing most people wouldn’t choose to have ‘orange peel’ textured walls.  They offer very few redeeming features;  but they’re generally a necessary evil.  Builders favor the textured walls because of the financial benefit: time is money.  Simply put, it’s faster to spray texture on a drywall than applying multiple layers of skim coat for a smooth finish.  And so we just have to live with them, right?

Or not…as the case may be.

My home has orange peel textured walls AND ‘knockdown’ ceilings.  Just one big cellulite cavern, really – with a front door.   I hate it.  With a passion. And for several years I truly believed that I would have to live with mock-cellulite walls.  

Kinda, just suck it up, Diane ‘First World Problem’ Drama Queen.

Then I tried this product, and my world opened up to endless possibilities.  Hallelujah. 

Pure & Original Fresco Lime Paint.

Unquestionably, this is a beautiful product.  I did a tutorial on using it last year, click here   (since that post, the paint  underwent a slight formula change, making it even easier to use).  Now, technically, I could have applied the lime paint over the orange peel (as a way to combat the offensiveness of the texture), but I really wanted it GONE!!   And so  I sat down with a glass of wine and watched this video.  Several times.

And it looked so flipping easy that I just had to try it.  And so I ran out and bought a trowel, and a hawk, and a sanding post and went to work.  And guess what? It turns out it’s pretty easy to skim coat over orange peel.  Who knew? It doesn’t need to be a Level 5 (the smoothest finish possible) because the lime paint will hide a lot of the imperfections. Once you get the hang of using a hand trowel, it’s becomes a little addictive

 (said the actress to the Bishop).  

I’m not proclaiming to be an expert.  At all.  If I walked onto a job site and showed them my troweling prowess, I have no doubt that I would be thrown out and ridiculed mercilessly.  And that’s OK.  Because you don’t have to be an expert to do this.  I found that two coats of the joint compound (with sanding) gave me a smooth enough base to apply the lime paint.   Choice of color?  Has to be Pure & Original Steel Blue.  

Hands down, my favorite color.  Blue makes me go weak at the knees, and my heart beat a little faster. I have no idea why. It just does.

When using the Fresco lime paint, you need to treat the walls with P&O’s Wallprim, for adhesion.  I highly encourage you to have P&O tint the Wallprim to the same color you’re going to be using (it will help you no end).  This is a great tutorial video of the product being applied.  

I watched this several times.  With a glass of wine…for I am a creature of habit.

 This is what I ended up with. Basically, if I can do this.  You can do this.

Isn’t it fabulous?  I loved it.  So much variation from one paint color.  This wall was sealed with Dead Flat Eco-Sealer. Yes, a durable dead flat finish.  On a wall.  Praise be!  

And I loved it so much I ended up finishing three walls this way.  Addiction.

And I got a ton of compliments on it. People were just so intrigued by it’s appearance. It’s a challenge to put character into a home built in the ’90’s. On a side note (especially when you’re in the furniture restoring/upcycling business) staging is KEY; and it helps if people can instantly recognize your pieces on social media. This can be because of your specific techniques/choice of furniture/images or backdrop. I made a conscious decision to stage ALL of my pieces against this wall.   And I truly think it helps with brand recognition.

And I was SO happy with it…  And then I saw this: 

 A huge 28″x 45″ wall stencil called ‘Fortuny’ by Royal Design Studio.  


I remember my first introduction to stencils (in the 90’s).  Very basic….a vine of ivy (remember?)  a cluster of roses…..Those days are gone, my friend



Am I the only one who remembers Mary Hopkin? Now I’ve posted this song I can’t get it out of my head!!! But I digress.

Today high quality wall stencils can mimic intricately detailed wallpaper.  And this is good, because have you seen the price of wallpaper these days?  

Take a look at this Farrow & Ball ‘Silvergate’ wallpaper. Equally beautiful.  But it’s $265 a roll!  For a small room I would need eight rolls, and I would still need to skimcoat the walls! Not to mention the actual wallpapering.  I wallpapered our first home and almost divorced my husband because of the stress.  With each wall I hated him more.

My marriage can’t handle the stress of gluing paper to walls. 

Stenciling is a good option for me us our family.

But I wanted to try the stencil using the Fresco Lime Paint.  Because…why not?  Given that you get so much variance in color with the lime paint, I decided to use Steel Blue on the Steel Blue base.  

And this is how it turned out.



I absolutely LOVE it! There is so much variance in the color and texture.  On this wall I applied the lime paint quite thickly with a brush.  I wanted a more textured look.  And it really is reminiscent of  aged worn plaster.  

Steel Blue on Steel Blue.  It works.  

On my dining room wall I wanted a smoother finish, so I applied the paint with a foam roller and then sanded.  This room doesn’t get great light, so the subtleness really works well.  Same but different.  

In this room it looks like aged worn wallpaper.

(Seriously, my poor stressed camera was about to commit Hari Kari.  Although beautiful, this type of wall is really hard to capture on film.  There is so much variance that my focus feature just about surrendered.  It just non-verbally gave up.  Sometimes I ask too much of it).  Case in point.  The deeper blue is a true representation of the Steel Blue.  The grey at the top of the photos, is just my camera getting it’s revenge on me.  

I love both finishes equally.  Given the huge size of the stencil, the actual process was pretty fast.  And again, because of the variance in texture/color – if you mess up on the stencil it blends in perfectly!

It’s very forgiving.  I like that feature.

My poor little camera was having a difficult time knowing what to focus on!

Look at the photo below.  It’s a great photo, for two reasons.  Firstly, it shows where I purposely dripped water down over the raised detailing (I did this effect in the corner also).  I really wanted the wall to look random, hand finished.  I think that’s probably the reason why I love this product so much: it won’t give you a generic finish.  The second reason I love this photo is that you can see the difference between the orange peel texture and the Fresco lime paint.  This is the walk-through between my dining room and kitchen.  Seriously, how hideous is the orange peel?

It was, at the end of the day, a great experience.  The results speak for themselves.  I really want to do my bedroom walls with this stencil and lime paint.  Think soothing greys….or creams…or….endless possibilities.

Besides, life is too short to embrace orange peel, and it’s too short to be generic.  The challenge is finding something that will take things to a higher level; to be stand-alone in your finishes. I think this product helps you get there.  I, for one, know that life is certainly too short to not challenge yourself.  

Now, where’s your trowel?


{instead catchy ending here}

Diane aka The Paint Factory


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