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Fix or Tone Down A Bad Sponge Paint Job

I have tried sponging paint on a wall and it turned out looking blotchy. You can tone it down to soften the edges and make it look more like suede by color washing over the wall. You can use the lighter of your sponged color tones and mix a solution of 3 teaspoons paint to 1 ½ cups water. If you think the tones are too vibrant you can soften your wall color with brown, cream, or gray tones, or a mix of gray and cream or brown and cream mixed with water. You need to stand back and look at your paint job and decide what tones you need to add to soften it. Blue paint will respond to gray and cream mixed. Green paint will respond to brown alone. If you want your green to look more like a sage green, add some brown and gray together. If you find it too dark, you can lighten it with cream. Brown tones can be softened with gray and/or cream mixes. Oranges and reds respond to browns.

If you have some latex (satin or flat/ not gloss) paint at home, you can use it. Otherwise go to a craft store and buy a 1 or 2 ounce sample of latex craft paint in cream, brown, or gray. I suggest buying 1 of each. They are only about $1.00 per bottle and you can mix your colors and experiment. Tape your trim and use drop cloths as you would on any paint job. If you choose to mix white and gray, squirt about 2 teaspoons of white and an equal amount of gray paint into a plastic bowl and add about 1 ½ cups of water. Mix well. You can use more cream or more gray depending on the tones you want, but a mix of the two seems to give a softer tone. Experiment on your wall until you have the color you want. You may add more water if necessary. Brown paint may be mixed using 3 teaspoons paint to 1 ½ cups water. Using a cotton cloth, immerse the cloth in the solution, wring out the excess liquid, and simply go over your wall as if you were washing it. The paint will come on in streaks at first, but keep blending it into the wall until it is even. As it dries, you will notice a softer tone to the wall.

This is a little scary to try at first, but if you don’t like what you see at first, you can simply wash it IMMEDIATELY with soap and water. It goes on very fast and is much easier than repainting

TIP: Wear rubber gloves when you do this, as the paint does tend to get into your fingernails.


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