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I love creating faux finishes and was super eager to give this one a try…until I realised that said kit was kind of hard to find here in Australia. I found one place that stocked it, but it was $30AUD before shipping, which was a bit out of my price range for a small project.
So I decided to see if I could achieve the same faux concrete effect with plain ol’ acrylic paint.
victim test subject was this little deer statue.
I’ll be honest: It took a few goes to get the fake concrete effect right.
At first I just painted the deer with acrylic paint. The colour looked alright, but the texture was all wrong – far too smooth to look like real concrete.
The second time around I tried using a mixture of paint and salt. I had hoped the salt would give me a good bumpy texture, but it honestly just looked like a grainy mess.
After two fails in one day, I decided to put the deer aside. But then late that night, while toasty warm in my blanket cocoon, I suddenly had an idea: I could try using wall putty to create the texture I needed.
The next morning I gave the wall putty + paint combination a go and it produced the effect I was after.
So today I’d like to share how I created the faux concrete effect. I hope you find it useful and, if you make something, I’d love to see a picture!
For the faux concrete effect:
- A paintbrush and sponge (I just used a ripped up dish sponge).
- Wall putty. You might already have some on hand but if you don’t, it’s usually a few dollars at hardware stores.
- White and black acrylic paint. Cheap is fine, matte paints are ideal, but satin will also work. Avoid ‘glossy’ paints.
- DecoArt Americana paint in Battleship
For the deer statuette:
- Deer statue (I found mine at an op shop/thrift store for $1, I think it’s just an old Christmas decoration)
- A wooden rectangle plaque. Here’s one on Amazon, but I’ve seen them cheaper in craft stores (I got mine on clearance for $2AUD).
- Gorilla Glue
(As I mentioned above, this project took three goes to get right, which is why the deer looks like it’s already been painted.)
To begin, I smoothed wall putty over the deer at random to create a bumpy, textured base. As I mentioned above, having a textured base helps your faux concrete look more realistic.
Once the putty was dry, I mixed up my paint. In my palette I had:
- Plain white acrylic paint
- A mixture of approximately four parts white paint to one part DecoArt’s Battleship, with a teeny (teeny) bit of black mixed in.
- Plain Battleship paint
- A mixture of approximately six parts Battleship to one part black
The key to getting the faux concrete effect was a lot of layering.
First, I used a paintbrush to paint the entire deer using the white/battleship mixture.
Next, I gently dipped a sponge into the plain Battleship paint. I dabbed it on a rag to remove most of the paint, then dabbed the sponge over the deer at random. Every so often, I would switch to a clean part of the sponge and use that to gently blend the paint in with the base layer.
Next, I did the same thing with the Battleship/black paint mixture.
I then went over everything one more time, using the sponge to layer the different colours over one another.
Finally, I dipped a completely dry old paintbrush into some white acrylic paint, removing the excess by dabbing the brush on a rag. I used the paintbrush to brush random parts of the statuette, using my finger to blend the white paint slightly as I went. If you’ve got one, an old, cheap paintbrush works best for this, as the coarse bristles are responsible for creating the effect.
Once the white paint was dry, my faux concrete effect was finished.