How to Make Paint Look Like Venetian Plaster

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Things You'll Need

  • Paint
  • Roller or spray applicator
  • Cloth towel
  • Plastic spatula
  • Sponge
  • Paint brush
  • Steel wool
  • Trowel

Venetian plaster is a decorative paint treatment that adds a level of classic sophistication to an interior space. Used in traditional Mediterranean design to add texture to walls and ceilings, it can be difficult and labor-intensive to apply because it requires several layers and skilled technique. To create a marble-like Venetian plaster effect in your space, you can use inexpensive paint and faux treatment tools for a fraction of the price of paying a professional plasterer.

Apply a light base color to the wall. This color will peek through your other layers of paint in some areas around the surface of the wall. Use a normal roller, spray or brush technique to create a smooth finish over the wall’s surface.

Dab a cloth towel in the second color of paint and apply liberally in thick patches to the wall. Usually when you paint, you would smooth out pools of paint with a brush or roller. In this case, you want some of the thick texture to stay. Use a small plastic spatula to smooth some areas of the paint, but do not smooth completely. Allow these areas to dry slightly before continuing.

Dip a sponge into a third shade of paint. Generally this color of paint will be a shade darker than the base color, but lighter than the second color. Press the sponge onto the wall surrounding the thick patches of paint. This will help blend the different shades of paint together to create a marble-like effect. The sponge will also create even more texture.

Add any finishing touches of detailed texture and blending with a small paint brush. You can also use steel wool or a trowel to create texture and definition where desired.


  • Work only in small areas at a time until you are comfortable with the look of each section.


  • Do not apply the paint in uniform patches. The idea is for the paint to look weathered and textured, not smooth.


About the Author

Liza Hollis has been writing for print and online publications since 2003. Her work has appeared on various digital properties, including Hollis earned a degree in English Literature from the University of Florida.

Photo Credits

  • Jupiterimages/ Images