Marmorino & Stucco application
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IMPORTANT: Do this on at least a 2 square foot sample board before committing to the real thing. It's easy once you figured it out.
Marmorino can be applied soft and subtle for an elegant larger scale application. It can be applied with more texture, or thinner final strokes for higher sheen and variation of color. Check out other possibilities of applications in artistic techniques videos and text.
Our plasters are much lighter then when wet. Don't be surprised when opening the bucket.
REMEMBER: IT'S A 2 COAT APPLICATION. APPLY THE 1ST COAT, LET IT COMPLETELY DRY, THEN DO THE 2ND. EACH COAT TAKES AT LEAST 1 DAY TO DRY.
1. Trowel on a buttery coat of plaster. Don't scrape it on. Apply it so at least doesn't chatter, meaning make lines as a result of scraping the sand in the plaster. The more texture you have the more variation you you will get on your final coat. Let it completely dry. It will take at least a day.
2. On your dried plaster coat, apply the 2nd coat as you did the 1st. If anything, you can go thinner. Again don't scrape and chatter the plaster. You can make it very subtle, or burnish it for more drama. Burnish it only when the plaster is at a clay like consistancy-not sticky and not totally dry. Let each area set up a little before you apply another thin layer and burnish it.
3. When the second coat is totally dry, you can unmask, leave it alone, or you can wax it or seal it. For the unburnished less dramatic method, we recommend sanding it with a worn fine sanding sponge or something similar, then wiping the excess dust off with a damp rag. This will slightly sand it, feathering out any unwanted microtexture, and this will help accent the wall with giving more color variation. You can sand out corners and other troubled areas with a a sanding sponge, or similar. You can apply more layers of Marmorino, Stucco or Veneziano for more durability or different look. Always let coats completely dry before the next.
Getting the plaster off the hawk is easy is easy after about 20 minutes of practice. First scoop a bit of plaster from the bucket onto the hawk. There are special tools for that that in the drywall or concrete section of a hardware store. Or you can use a spatula knife or whatever works.
The first time the hawk is used, it will react a little with the aluminum of the hawk. It will feel very slippery for a few minutes then stay on with no problems.
Sometimes plaster will be thinner than usual. Sometimes almost soupy. Deeper colors have more tint. In fact up to 3-4 quarts of tint per 5 gallon bucket. When we mix it, it can take some time to settle or thicken for easier use. If the plaster is soupy, put on very small amounts on the hawk. Like this it will air dry a little and be easier to work with. Take only small slivers of the plaster with your trowel. This will take longer, but it will be less messy. Another trick is to have a small paint roller and roll on small sections and trowel them out. You can make it look identical to a normal trowel method.
Finally getting the plaster on the hawk. Don't scrape it off the hawk. Cream it off the top compressing the plaster a little at the same time. You can take little or lots of the hawk depending on what you're plastering. Don't scoop the plaster from the hawk. This is what most beginners do. Just compress it and skim it from the top not scraping the metal of the hawk. New trowels will be slippery at first with the plaster. After a few minutes the plaster will stick better to the metal of the trowel, like the hawk. It's like 'priming the metal'.
Spread the first coat about 1/8" to 1/16" of an inch thick over on the wall. Work top to bottom. Trowel it like butter. Always trowel at an angle. Never lay it flat. Whatever texture you end up with on the first coat will determine much of final variation of color on your finished product. If you want texture and more interest, give the first coat a little texture here and there. As it starts to dry, you can go back and mess with it a little- adding here, taking away there. As it dries, it will tend to tear a little on your trowel. Spraying water on the plaster will help with this issue. Your second coat will will act differently from your first. This is because of the difference in absorption and drying.
Use smaller tools or even cut pieces of plastic to get into tight areas. The best way is adding water to a little plaster and making a thick slurry. You can then brush on the slurry to areas, like tight door jams, pipes, wires, covers, etc.
Apply the plaster from top to bottom at about a 1/32" of an inch. Apply it so you're not scraping it. If you scrape the 1st coat, you will get chatter. You'll have thinner and thicker areas. Allow each each layer to set up a little, like clay, before you apply more on top. You can also leave some of the first coat exposed here and there. The layering technique will give you more depth and variation, even if it's subtle one. As it starts to dry, you can compress the plaster with the edge of your clean trowel holding it at an angle. This is burnishing. Do this lightly once or twice. The more you do this the more dramatic your color varaitaion will become. So don't over do it if your going for a quiet classic look.
You can also apply it without layering anything. Just a uniform coat, then burnishing as it dries, giving a very soft look.
If you have used Veneziano, it is the same exact priniples, except you're applying thicker coats and you have to wait longer before burnishing.
You can apply the second coat with alot of texture and basecoat coming through or keep layer ingit, filling in any unfilled areas, contantly smoothing it out, then burnishing. Thos will give you a more compact and uniform sheen without that 'old world' element.
As you will learn on your sample, if your over burnish it when it's still a little tacky or wet, it can crack or tear. If you keep burnishing with too much force, it can also tear. Make sure you apply plaster wet on wet so you don't get lines where you stopped. Do the whole wall at once. If it's a large area, mist water on the areas where you stopped, without letting it streak down the walls. That way you have more time to work with.