Marble is a gorgeous stone that exudes classical elegance, but it can cost a fortune. Marbleizing is a skillful technique you can use to create a faux marble finish that takes any piece to the next level. You can do marbleize a variety of surfaces, like ceramic tile, Formica countertops, kitchen cabinets, backsplash wood, linoleum, and more. To get a classic, chic, faux-Carrara marble effect in your own home or for your furniture refinishing project, follow this week’s Finish Friday video. In it, Amy walks you through how to use her perfected marbling technique.
Cleaning and Prepping Your Tile
To create gorgeous marbleized tile like Amy does in the video, you’ll need:
Make sure to collect all your materials and set up your workstation — this is an involved process and you’ll need to follow along with Amy as she works!
First Steps First
In the video, Amy reminds us that a clean surface is an essential step before painting and marbleizing. One Step Paint™ doesn’t require any prepping or special application, but the surface you’re going to paint and marbleize does need to be cleaned first. Clean Slate will get any surfactants off your tile: wax, residue, soot, grime, and more. Be sure to apply Clean Slate to your tiles first, using a clean lint-free rag and allowing it to dry for at least 5 minutes.
Once the Clean Slate is dry, you’re ready to lay down your first layer of paint! Use a foam roller so your paint will apply smoothly. Using your foam roller, apply Ballet White One Step Paint™ to your tile. This matte white gives you a flat, chalky finish that will lay the foundation for a Carrara marble look. When you’re ready to experiment with other colors, Amy says, you can certainly use other shades of One Step Paint™, but starting with this white is a great way to practice.
To create the veining color that will be applied on top of your coat of Ballet White paint, you’ll mix Ballet White and Black One Step Paint™. Add about a spoonful of Ballet White to a bowl or container, then a small drizzle of the black. Mix well to create a pale grey color and, of course, be sure to mix enough paint for your entire project.
From there, add glazing liquid and lukewarm tap water to the paint mixture. Water that’s slightly warm or room temperature, not cold, will mix better with your other materials. The glazing liquid will make your paint mixture hardy, while the water will thin everything out and make it easy to work with. Use a ratio of 1 part paint, 3 parts Glazed Over, and 3 parts water. Mix everything well for a thin consistency. Now you’re ready to marbleize!
How to Create Veining
Before veining, your paint mixture should be applied to a damp surface, not a dry one. Take your small spray bottle of water and spritz the surface of your tiles. Make sure the entire surface is wet.
Now you’re ready to add veining using your turkey feather. Amy explains that a turkey feather rather than a paint brush will create a more natural look. Plus, turkey feathers were used in the days of the Renaissance to paint! Your tile will look beautifully authentic.
Load up your turkey feather with your veining mixture. Offload the excess slightly, then drag the edge of your feather loaded with paint along the tile. Start at the top left corner of your tile and work your way towards the bottom right. Create jagged, rigid lines so you get a cracked, marbled effect. You’ll create a variety of dark grey veins, light grey veins, and soft grey gradation for a natural marble look. This is a great place to pay attention to the video, as the steps here take a little practice.
Once you’re happy with the veining you’ve created, allow everything to dry. You can even take a hair dryer and dry the surface off quickly as Amy does in the video if you’re short on time! Then, you’ll apply more glazing liquid on top of your tile using a chip brush or a tapered brush. Mix up your glaze and Ballet White One Step Paint™ using the same ratio as before: 1 part paint, 3 parts Glazed Over, and 3 parts water. Load up the brush of your choice and cover the entire surface of your tile with glaze.
Then, bundle up a clean lint-free rag in your hand and gently pat the glazed surface. This glaze will soften the marble effect and make it look more authentic. After you’re finished, let the glaze dry for about 20 to 30 minutes. You’ll apply two coats of Matte Sealer with a clean foam roller as a finishing touch, which will protect your tile from wear and tear. If you’re painting furniture, you can even add wax on top of the Matte Sealer for a beautiful patina.
Now… look how gorgeous that is!
More Refinishing Magic Next Week
If you’ve enjoyed this week’s Finish Friday on marbleizing, don’t miss next Friday’s video! Amy goes live every Friday at 12 noon Central time to share more tips and tricks for restoring rescued furniture — including high-end finishes just like this. Be sure to Follow and Like our Facebook page so you don’t miss out!