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The process of marbling involves a combination of paints and oils, which are carefully and skilfully manipulated to create a marbled pattern or design.
Clever paintwork

Echoing the grand and decadent nature of Art Deco, marbling is usually associated with high-end interior design. It’s an ancient art form that has been appreciated and utilized in many different cultures around the world. Its beauty and versatility make it a popular choice for art deco style home décor, as it can add a unique and luxurious feel to any room. The process of marbling involves a combination of paints and oils, which are carefully and skilfully manipulated to create a marbled pattern or design. Once finished, these intricate designs are often used to adorn items like furniture, walls and fabrics for a sophisticated yet modern touch. But you can create the same effect to breathe new life into an old coffee table with some clever paintwork.

Choosing your paint

To create the marble effect you’re after, you’ll need at least two different shades of satin paint. Firstly pick the main colour you want as your base and then a tin of white. Mixing a little of these two colours together helps you create your highlight shade. Most people will probably first think of the typical white/grey mix, but loads of other natural shades work just as well. Why not experiment with a faded blush pink or light blue. There’s plenty of room to get creative with colour, the style is the main thing to focus on.

Prepping your surface

Start by going over your tabletop with a sander. It smooths out the surface and helps to create a better finish for the primer to stick to. Then wipe it down with a clean brush or damp cloth to get rid of any dust. Make sure you give it plenty of time to completely dry out before you move on. Apply the first coat of primer to your tabletop and give it some time to dry. Then assess whether or not it needs a second coat. If you can still see the original surface through the primer, go over it again.

Adding your colour and glaze

Now that your primer is down, you can add the first coat of your base colour to the surface. Similarly to the primer, check that it’s fully covered after drying before deciding on a second coat. Now that your base colour is down, mix a clear glaze with your paint using the ratio recommended on the instructions. Then it’s time to get creative: use a rag or large paint brush to apply the glaze mix and create your pattern. Try to let it flow in a more natural way as opposed to painting in straight lines, so you still have the base colour showing in small areas.

Finishing touches

There are just a few things to do before your table has been fully transformed. Once you’ve let the paint dry, use a small feather brush and white paint to add some extra veins for a more authentic marble look. You could even use a darker shade to add some different splashes of colour. When you’re pleased with how it looks, go over the surface with a coat of varnish to give it that signature sheen.

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