By Gene and Katie Hamilton
Textured wall finishes have been around a long time, and one of the most enduring is one that creates a subtle texture to an interior wall, giving it a saltbush, orange peel or plaster look from the Old World. While the texture gives the drywall the appearance of plaster, the surface is not rough. Some builders are using these finishes on drywall in new homes instead of wallpaper because they’re a way to distinguish the surface of walls without adding another covering to them.
What's the cost to apply texture to drywall?
To apply a texturing finish to the drywall of a 10-foot by 15-foot room, or about 300-square feet of wall area, a decorative painting contractor will charge $501, which includes the labor and material. You can do the job for $125, the cost of the paint and materials, and save 75 percent.
Using a specialty paint like Dimensions Old World Plaster by Dutch Boy, the process involves first cleaning the walls so they’re smooth, dull and dry. You make a first application in irregular-size sections and patterns to reduce the possibility of lap marks, cutting in with a brush and then rolling the paint within the sections. Use a 4-inch steel trowel to skim the surface in a crisscross pattern creating a wall texture with a plaster effect. When the first application dries, use the trowel to dry burnish the finish, gently scraping the trowel over the surface to knockdown texture or any ridges. Apply more applications if necessary, until you receive the texturing effects you like.
Sound too complicated and time consuming? Here's a link to Home Advisor, a free referral service that matches homeowners with local contractors.
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The bottom line: compare the price of a drywall contractor’s bid to texture drywall with what it costs to DIY and make your decision. You can adjust the cost to where you live by adding your ZIP Code.
Improvement and Repair Cost Updated 2020