Before delving into the technique to use to apply Venetian plaster to walls, let's first see what we are talking about specifically, what raw materials this coating is made of and what its properties are. It is a mixture, specifically composed of aerial lime mixed with water, lime putty and marble-based powder. This composition has the characteristic of being breathable and therefore avoiding the accumulation of humidity on the walls. This property is very important and adds to the resistance to both mold and bacteria. Therefore it can be used without problems in any room of the house, even in the bedroom or children's room. In fact, if originally the preferred environment in which to use Venetian stucco was the living room or lounge, it is now possible to decorate the walls of the entire house. This is because it is particularly long-lasting and, unlike simple painting, does not require frequent maintenance interventions. Its appearance remains unchanged over the years and, even in the event of small accidents, which can still happen, it can be easily cleaned with a cloth. It is certainly no coincidence that stucco, a wall decoration with very ancient origins, continues to enjoy enormous success today as a covering not only in private homes but also in public places, first and foremost hotels and restaurants, where luxury and Aesthetics play a very important role in attracting potential customers.
Preparation of the walls
But how is good quality Venetian plaster made? First you need to proceed with the preparation of the walls of the room, which can take several days. The consistency of the preparation work will depend a lot on the starting condition of the walls on which you are going to work. If there are traces of humidity, for example, it will be necessary to proceed with the utmost care and bring the wall back to practically zero, and then plaster it again before applying the covering. It should be kept in mind, however, that the stucco can be placed on any type of surface, even wood, but it must necessarily be smooth. Otherwise it will be impossible to spread everything correctly. As a rule, however, it is necessary to proceed with an initial smoothing, which must be followed by the application of a coat of insulation. We therefore continue the work with a second smoothing, and the wall can finally be considered ready for the application of the stucco. Naturally, before proceeding you need to wait for everything to dry and this could take up to a couple of days, depending on the season in which the work is carried out.
Application of stucco
The first coat must be applied with a washable acrylic paint, which will create a sort of support base on which to work. To apply Venetian plaster, two techniques can be used, both valid but quite different from each other. The first consists of using a brush. With this tool you spread the product and then, once this first phase is finished, you perfect the work using the spatula, which is necessary to give the stucco that particular appearance that distinguishes it. The second method, which is also the one most used by professionals, as well as by non-experts who dedicate themselves to do-it-yourself, is that of application using a spatula alone. The latter is used to spread the stucco and must be used by moving the hand to the right and to the left alternately, in practice making a semicircular movement. This results in a stained effect, which is typical of the product. Once the covering has been applied with one of these two techniques, which can be freely chosen, the walls must then be polished, which serves to obtain that characteristic marble effect which makes the covering so elegant and particular. Polishing is nothing more than the application of a shiny stucco on the opaque one that had been previously placed. Also in this phase you must proceed with circular movements of the hand, in such a way as to keep the surface spotless. An equally valid alternative to the procedure we have just described is the one which consists in using ready-made mixtures, which contain lime, gypsum and cement and which can be purchased in specialized shops. The mixtures have the advantage of being immediately ready for application. They are spread on the wall with a maximum of three consecutive coats, which will correspond to as many layers on the wall. The last one is the final one, which at this point simply needs to be polished. To polish the stucco, proceed with special beeswax, which must be spread with the help of a woolen cloth. The wax must be spread on the wall only when you are sure that it is perfectly dry. The advice, especially if you are new to this type of work and are not perfectly able to recognize the state of the stucco, is to wait at least a couple of days before proceeding with polishing. This avoids the risk of damaging the entire work.
How to clean grout
As we said above, this product has the advantage of being able to be cleaned very easily. Now that we have also understood the differences between one type of stucco and another, the one polished with wax and the one on which beeswax has not been applied, we can however go on to better understand the type of technique to be used act. On the stucco on which beeswax has been regularly applied, you can carry out a complete cleaning, complete with soap and water, obviously without exaggerating, but using a cloth to rub on the shiny surface in the most delicate way possible. However, the situation is different for those walls on which beeswax has not been applied. For example, it will be advisable to avoid using water, which could ruin the surface. A soft cloth, wool or cotton, is usually the optimal solution for cleaning effectively but also delicately.
How much does it cost?
But how much can it cost to create Venetian stucco in one or more rooms of the house? Naturally, the overall price varies depending on whether you turn to a professional or decide instead to do it yourself. Professionals in the sector can ask for a maximum of 100 to a minimum of 30 euros per square meter, depending on the type of stucco you choose. Even if you decide to do it yourself, choosing a lower quality product obviously means saving money. But with what final advantages? In fact, it is good to keep in mind that these coatings are destined to last over time and for this reason it is always advisable to invest a little more when you find yourself carrying out the work, because in this way you will be able to avoid having to intervene new and within walking distance. This is why, before proceeding with the purchase, it is always advisable to consult the seller and ask him which stucco is best, also based on the quality-price ratio. As far as colors are concerned, you are spoiled for choice. In fact, Venetian stucco is available in both sober and brighter shades, to be carefully combined with the type of furnishing of the room and the color of the furniture. If the latter are dark in colour, perhaps a lacquered black, it will be preferable to choose a light-coloured stucco, for example white would be perfect, which with its marble and shiny effect would be able to give the right shine to the room. With more classic furnishings, perhaps in wood, it would be riskier to choose a yellow or cream colored stucco, which would stand out in contrast with the light or dark brown of the furniture.
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