Choosing a wallpaper accent for our new bedroom

How To Use Rag Rolling To Create A Ripple Effect Paint Finish

If you enjoy interior decorating and you fancy creating an unusual ripple-effect paint finish in one of your rooms, you might want to try rag rolling.  This effect can bring the impression of movement and vitality to a plain, rather boring room.  You could use the effect on an entire wall or just in a smaller, feature area.  Here's how to do it.

What you'll need

  • coloured emulsion paint
  • gloss or quick-dry satin paint (for the background to your rag rolling paint effect)
  • ragging chamois
  • paint roller and tray
  • gloves
  • plain card (for practicing on)

You can obtain everything that you need for this project from a good DIY store.

How to do it

Before you begin your project, it's a good idea to practice your technique on some plain card that can be thrown away when you've finished.

Begin by making sure that the wall you're going to paint is clean.  You can use a mild solution of washing-up liquid and warm water to wipe the wall.  This will remove greasy marks and dust, leaving a clean surface for your background coat of paint.  

Apply a background base coat of gloss or quick-dry satin paint.  Allow the paint to dry completely.  

Take a ragging chamois, dampen it in clean water and squeeze it to get rid of any excess moisture.  If your chamois becomes clogged with paint as you're working, rinse it out, wring out excess water and reapply the paint.  

When ragging, work from the bottom to the top of the wall.  Now, using your roller, apply a coat of coloured emulsion paint over an area of about a square metre.  

Put on your gloves.  While the paint is still wet, take your bunched ragging chamois and roll it over the surface, using an 'S' shape or a random pattern.  As you work, squeeze any excess paint from the chamois.  

Now move on to the next metre square block.  To blend the blocks, use your roller to blend adjacent areas, and then rag over the join.  

When the whole wall is covered, use the ragging chamois to make individual, random patterns, and stand back to assess the overall effect as you go.  If you apply your chamois at various angles and pause frequently to re-bunch it, you will avoid repeating the print.

In conclusion

If you fancy a totally unique paint effect in your rooms, you might want to consider rag rolling.  You could tackle the job yourself or if you prefer, why not hire a local residential painting contractor?