Tuesday, April 19, 2011

How To Paint An Argyle Wall

Madelyn Ridgeway is awesome! She and her hubby painted their sons bedroom wall with an argyle pattern and she emailed me the directions for our readers! I'm loving this wall - can't wait to see the finished room! Here's the sweater vest that was the inspiration for the room.
"I originally painted the room grey in anticipation of a little girl’s grey and lavender room only to find out I was having a boy. Although I was disappointed at first, I found this sweater and was instantly smitten by it and used it to design the nursery around. One of the best things about the inspiration is that it had grey in it because we didn’t want to re-paint the room again if we could help it.


1. Paint the base coat of paint on the wall and let it dry completely.
2. Next I figured out how many rows of diamonds I wanted. We decided on 4 rows but wish we had done 3 instead just for personal preference.
3. Using the calculator given on Silver Spoon Murals, I figured the measurements of each row and column.
4. Once you have calculated the width and height of your diamonds it is time to draw your lines vertically down the wall where your diamonds will be. Measure the width of each diamond and using your level (I used a laser level), draw a straight line the exact width of the diamond all the way down the wall vertically. Keep going until all vertical lines are drawn. I marked my lines using a chalk line so I wouldn’t have to worry about erasing the lines. You can adjust the width of the diamonds slightly, but don’t adjust the height.
5. Draw horizontal lines the height of your diamond the entire length of the wall (again, I used the chalk line). Now you should basically have a bunch of rectangles on the wall.
6. Find the middle of each rectangle and mark the top, bottom, right and left side. Then connect the dots by drawing lines to form your diamond pattern. Keep in mind that all these lines will have to be erased at some point if you are using pencil, so you may not want to make too dark a line with your pencil. Chalk, however will wipe off easily with a baby or clorox wipe. It is possible to connect the dots with tape without drawing lines but I didn’t want to risk messing up so again, I used chalk. If you do not feel confident, DRAW THE LINES that will form your diamond. Don't attempt to tape all the way down your wall in one line as it is impossible to keep the tape straight enough on the wall without a partner, and even then, it may be difficult. Rather, tear off a piece of tape just long enough to cover each side of your diamond.
7. Once the diamonds are all taped off, you paint them. I painted alternating rows since I was using the same colors for the entire column however the website directions direct you slightly differently.
8. Bleeding may be a problem when taping the diamonds I suggest using a flat end trowel or your finger nail to run down the side of the tape of each diamond . This usually prevents any paint from bleeding through. If you still manage to bleed through the tape, you can always go back with an angled artist brush (available at craft stores) and steady hands to touch up the bleeds.

9. To mark the diagonal lines, we measured the center of each diamond diagonal for a diagonal row. This may sound confusing so I’ll try to explain better with an example. For the first diagonal strip I marked the center point of the diagonal for row 1 diamond 1, row 2 diamond 2, row 3 diamond 3 and so on until I completed one diagonal row. I did this for all the diagonal rows until I had created diagonal lines for each diamond. I once again used chalk lines to mark the diagonal stripes.

10. I used a make- your-own stencil kit I purchased from Hobby Lobby to make a dash stencil. For the dashes I found a ready made rectangle shape I found in the art department of Hobby Lobby as a template. I decided on the spacing I preferred for the dashes and made a comprised of a stencil of dashes.

11. After completing the stencil, I put painters tape on each side (you’ll need to periodically change the tape to make sure it will stick to the wall) of the stencil and placed the stencil directly over the center of each line - using a stencil brush, I stenciled the dashes on! Go over each diagonal line until all are completed. I went back over with a painters brush and touched up any dashes that may have been inconsistent because of bleeds.

Update: Directions step-by-step - how-to paint an argyle wall.

If you have any questions, leave a comment. Madelyn mentioned she would be happy to answer any questions! Thanks for sharing such a detailed project!

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