I should probably call these faux ‘foil-wrapped chocolate eggs’ but that isn’t what this faux finish is. It truly is a finish that would mimic alabaster, IF I had used eggs with a smooth finish. Which I didn’t.
Let me explain. I got all excited when I heard Young House Love was hosting a Winter Pinterest Challenge. I knew I had to make something . . . but what?
Easter! Of course! It’s right around the corner and I have not.a.single.thing ready. I did a search on Pinterest for “Easter” – oh yes, it’s a fabulous ‘search’ tool – and saw these beauties.
*cue angels singing* How absolutely gorgeous are these italian alabaster eggs from Williams-Sonoma? I fell head-over-heels in love with them. The more I looked at them, the more I thought I could come up with something close to a faux alabaster finish.
Tell me you’ve looked at something and thought, “Hey, I could do that!” C’mon. You know you have.
Another thing is, when I started painting, I actually started with faux finishes – marble, rust, sandstone, red brick – you name it, I painted it. But when it came to painting walls, well, there wasn’t a lot of call for faux marble walls. (This was about 10 years before venetian plaster.)
And another thing is, faux finish artists are just that – Artists. When I saw the work of true artists like Regina of Garay Artisans and Theresa of Fike Studio, I realized I just wasn’t willing to put in the time, effort (and blood, sweat & tears) to come close to their level. I’m happy to paint simple murals, thank you.
But for small projects? I still love smooshing paint around and making something boring look fabulous.
So, back to the alabaster eggs. My first thought was the cheapo plastic pull-apart easter eggs. Two things stopped me: 1) They’d have to be primed, and I didn’t want to spray a bunch of eggs (in the rain, no less) and 2) they’d have a line around their middle.
So I grabbed these papier mache eggs out of my to-be-painted pile. Ok, ok, one of my to-be-painted piles. I have a few.
No primer needed. No line around the middle. Purrfect. Except for one teensie-weensie thing – the eggs aren’t smooth. They have itsy-bitsy ridges all over them, which makes this finish look really, really cool but . . . they don’t look like alabaster.
But they’re still pretty and it’s still a ‘faux’ finish that’s fun to paint – it’s just closer to ‘faux’ foil-wrapped chocolate eggs! Wanna try it?
I’m not gonna list all the paints I used. I used a lot. Here’s what you need for each egg color – a mid to dark shade, a light shade, and pearl paint. I used Martha Stewart pearl by Plaid. In fact, almost all the paints I used were Martha Stewart because the colors are absolutely yummy and perfect for Easter.
Okay, let’s get started!
Paint the eggs with the dark color first. Don’t worry about covering every square inch. Of course, since they’re eggs, you’ll need something to hold them while they dry. An old candy holder from Valentine’s Day works great.
Except this candy holder isn’t from February 14. It’s from, oh, a week or so ago. Grocery Outlet – $1.47. Score! And in the interest of this Easter project and crafty people everywhere, all chocolates had to be consumed.
When the dark color has dried, paint the light color on. Of course, you don’t really have to wait for it to dry, especially if you like smooshing paint around. Again, you don’t have to cover the entire egg. In fact, it’s better if you don’t cover all of the dark.
And, voila! Two-tone eggs. Actually, just my excuse to show you a close up of why these eggs were not gonna look like smooth alabaster.
Now, dip one corner of your brush in white paint, also known as a “sideload” if you wanna sound all artsy and stuff.
You can paint around some of the darker areas on the egg. You don’t have to use white; you can use the same light color and you’ll still get a nice effect. That is, if the idea of painting white on your pretty two-toned eggs gives you the heebie-jeebies. Or hives.
But see? The white isn’t so bad. And we’re gonna cover it up, anyway.
For those of you used to my painting tutorials – Hey, I use the layering method even when I do faux finishes.
Yep, just paint another coat of your light paint color right over the white. It’ll still show thru as a highlight.
It’s a subtle distinction, I’ll grant you. But when you’re trying to add depth and dimension to a flat or ahem curved surface, you want as many textural layers as you can get.
Now, at first I thought I could just spray some Gloss Finish on them and be done. But, no, it’s been raining for days and no sign of it letting up.
Ok, I’ll brush on a gloss finish. As I reached for my gloss sealer I knocked over a bottle of Martha Stewart pearl paint. Hmmm . . . I wonder ?
You be the judge. See how the pearl paint has more shine? It has even more in person. Forget the gloss varnish.
Ok, not ‘forget’ it. I actually tried painting it on after the pearl paint. Didn’t see a bit of difference.
Dark paint, light paint, white (optional), and pearl paint. No special brushes. No special paint strokes.
And no ‘faux’ alabaster either.
Every time I look at them I wanna unwrap ‘em.
No, they don’t look like my Pinterest inspiration pic at all. But I still get to link them up to the party at Young House Love. Hey – drop by and see all the cool Pinterest-inpired projects.
If you make it thru the over 600 projects you’ll see this one at about, oh, 639 or so.