How to Apply New Age Urban Lime Paint into Outstanding Design Styles, Even Indoors
People today want lime paint on the interior surfaces of their homes for two (2) main reasons:
Health and allergies associated with modern paints.
Decorative look & feel, with many attractive colour variations.
Lime paint has the advantage of being more “breathable” than a majority of modern paints along with low VOC’s. It can also consolidate surfaces and, unlike uniform synthetic coatings, provide attractive colour variations, especially after weathering or specific application techniques.
What is New Age Urban Lime Paint?
Protek has taken traditional Lime Paint used as an exterior coating and developed a new formulation that increases the bonding power so that Urban Lime Paint can be applied indoors (i.e. the strong bond means the colour will NOT rub off on clothes). At the same time, self leveling is improved, which makes the application more DIY Friendly. Technically, Urban Lime Paint is a “hybrid” a synthetic mix of natural lime minerals.
As an exterior coating it still retains the ability to age and blush as well as oxidise over time, giving that authentic aged look so desirable today. Simple application techniques can help deliver a weathered look.
What is Lime Paint?
Lime Paint is an old technique of what can be termed as “whitewashing”, the paint is made from hydrated or hydraulic lime and water, another version is used called “distemper”. Adding a glue would help the lime bond and be more resistant to wetting out. Today we have Urban Lime Paint, formulated for modern times.
Is New Age Urban Lime Paint a wholistic wall covering product?
YES, Urban Lime Paint is very low in VOC’s. Lime Paint has been used externally for centuries all over the world. It is very safe and free of toxic ingredients. In our case, the selection of the lime powder was important as Urban Lime Paint needed to have a very fine grain in order to perform well with different application techniques.
Lime paint dries many shades lighter. The alkalinity deters wood-boring beetles on timber structures and helps to sterilize plaster walls but wall surfaces must be recoated every 5 years.
Technical Tip: Slow Dry Needed
It is essential that Lime Paint dries slowly on exterior applications and remains damp for at least four hours to ensure maximum strength. Lime-painted surfaces may be dampened down with a fine mist sprayer, if early drying is a problem. Typically, the reasons for poor adhesion can be due to the coats being applied excessively thick, inadequate dampening down before panting, or too rapid drying out.
Urban Lime Paint Application
On painted stucco or cement, apply a coat of a high-bond primer to prevent delamination from the existing substrate. Sharktooth primer is a good selection and always prime new drywall.
Surfaces are then dampened (normally with a hand-pumped spray) and lime paint is applied thinly and worked in well, using a large, rough-textured brush. Usually, at least three or four coats are needed, each preceding coat being allowed to dry and the surface dampened down before the next coat goes on. Urban Lime Paint is NOT recommended for impervious materials (granite, hard brick, glossy paint etc.).
When an exterior application is required in general it’s to render the building green (i.e. to have a healthy breathable coating). A building that breaths, in general, will not be insulated from cold weather, exceptions of course are straw bale or similar on a traditional frame. Wood frame buildings are an airtight envelope, with a cement or synthetic in coating to waterproof the exterior walls. So, in these cases, lime is an esthetic choice.
- Brush down and remove loose dust from stone/plaster or pre-painted surfaces.
- Remove any existing mold growth with a fungicide.
- EXTERIOR: Dampen stone or plaster and absorbent surfaces thoroughly.
- Wear gloves and eye protection.
Even a cement stucco does not breath and lime plaster is generally not recommended as a protective coating. If the exterior is a lime mortar you are in the best possible shape.
- No primer needed to dilute the first coat 1-1 with water allow to dry slowly in very sunny conditions cover the façade with a drop sheet.
- Before applying the second coat, we dowse the surface with water, then apply Urban Lime Paint on a damp surface (NOTE: it should not be soaking wet).
- Follow that with a 3rd coat.
- Allow to dry 48 hours then apply a well-diluted coat of Marseilles soap this will create an effect called saponification by combining with the lime building a harder waterproof breathable surface.
NOTE: Always dilute the lime paint applied over plaster or lime mortar substrates, using clean water
up to 20% keeping the coats thin to prevent chalking and powdering of the film. Apply using a
large bristle brush working it well into the surface, paying special attention to eroded areas,
cracks and fissures. Apply up to four thin coats, allowing one day of curing between each coat.
- Lime Paint is typically selected in soft to medium-toned colors and the finish has a non-uniform appearance; it erodes gently rather than peels.
- Lime Paint can temporarily darken after a rainfall.
- Lime Paint can be worn away with rainwater.
- Urban Lime Paint was formulated as the lotus effect. If it gets wet, the colour becomes darker but after the water evaporates out, the colour comes back to normal.
Interior Surface Application
Urban Lime Application: Strié
Apply the first coat of lime paint over primer or existing flat paint with the aid of a 6” paintbrush in a cross-hatch method.
You want even coverage, but you don’t want the look of rolled paint. Make sure you rub into the corners and down to the baseboard.
The second and third coats are applied diluted with 10% water. Use a brush, rubbing in with a piece of cheesecloth to obtain transparency. This colour will appear lighter than the previous coats.
Lime Application: Method 2. Cross Hatching Application
Use a 3” paintbrush for the first coat of lime paint diluted 10% with water. Randomize the spread so as to get full coverage. Apply a second coat undiluted on about half the area. Come back with a partial coat of the first mix to balance the effect you will be getting as it dries is called blushing, as the lime leeches from the wash. The application for the two final coats can be ‘al fresco’, that is, wet to wet, as long as the first coat dries for at least 24 hours.
The above resulting finishes are not washable, and unless coated with a protective sealer, stains cannot be removed. If washability is required, the natural method uses diluted Marseilles soap. This can be brushed or rubbed on with a sponge to achieve moderate washability.
Lime paint Application: Polished Venetian Style
This method gives an authentic-looking Venetian plaster look that is very easy to do and quickly done by inexperienced hands. Just follow the step-by-step outline below.
Step 3: Repeat this process, painting in random brush strokes. Next, using a trowel or putty knife, stroke gently in one direction away from the wet into the dry. Increasing pressure and keeping the tool at a 25-degree angle or lower will build a sheen on the surface.
Step 4: To wax the final result use Cream Wax applied thinly with the trowel giving it a final polish by stroking it at a low angle. Alternatively, use a cloth and rub it in until the desired sheen is obtained.
Lime paint Application: Polished Venetian Style
Step 1: Make sure the wall is free from cracks and holes. If that is the case fill with spackle and spot prime. Roll a coat of lime paint with 100% coverage OR Sharktooth primer. If the surface is porous, or new drywall, dilute the paint 10% with water. Allow to dry at least 4 hours or more.
Step 2: Using a 3” paintbrush, cross-hatch an area of about 8 sq. ft., then with a trowel or with a 6” putty knife flatten the paint. Continue using this method across the whole area. If the wall or ceiling is a large area it’s better to work as a pair, one brushing one flattening. Allow to dry for 4 hours.