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Author Topic : Painting polystyrene to look like plaster. Any ideas? 
Bitsoft

Thread Starter / Photographer
City: London
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Aug 1, 2008
Posts: 423
Views : 1955  Nov 29, 2011 10:53am

Hi,
I'm looking to into the possibillity of making a distressed plaster, painted background. Does anybody know whether you can plaster and then paint a polystyrene board for this effect or whether you can cet away with just painting and getting a distressed look straight onto polystyrene.
Any ideas, or help would be appreciated.
Thanks.

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Kenp

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City: Weymouth/Portland DT3
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Sep 29, 2007
Posts: 10470

You will struggle with plaster becasue it won't tie into the surface and just come away in slivers. I suggest you paint the surface with PVA and let it dry. Then get a bag of Artex (remember 70's ceilings), mix it up and apply with a brush. You can further distress it whilst it dries off.

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Craig_Llewellyn

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City: Birmingham
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Nov 22, 2011
Posts: 119

Hi, I'd be nervous about plastering polystyrene. I am fairly sure that any surface needs to be absorbent. I have plastered a little bit and always had to damp down the surface first and remove any gloss type paint. I did make a mistake and think I could plaster a small section of chipboard once. Despite keying and priming it wasn't successful and the whole layer cracked and came away about a month later. You might be OK with a very thin skim less than 1 or 2 mm and no great sections. Although if some did fall off then you'd have a perfect distressed look.

Depending on your space and requirements if it were me I'd probably think about a simple stud frame on some form of bogie. Plasterboard it, then put a light skim on that.

Maybe talk this over with a local plasterer.

Good luck.

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Bitsoft

Thread Starter / Photographer
City: London
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Aug 1, 2008
Posts: 423

Thanks for your replies everyone that posted. I appreciate your taking time and advice.

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 Razoir



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City: Crediton
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Jan 17, 2006
Posts: 5028

Just a thought but how about glueing timber lathes to the polystyrene board before you plaster? If you paint the board a dark colour and then put on the lathes not only may the plaster hold better but also if you distress back to the lathes it will look more like real plastering.

Huge Hairy Jeremy

Website: www.photoartimages.org

Keep smiling, it frightens the crap out of the sane b'stards!

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BernardBleach

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City: Horsham, West Sussex.
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: May 1, 2002
Posts: 440

Personally I would use a sheet of 6mm MDF as a base and glue/fix battens on the back to stop any flexing and coat with PVA on the front to prime it. Polystyrene is far too flexible. Also a good idea to mix a little PVA into the plaster mix before applying it as this will help it bond and prevent cracking.

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D_H_P

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City: Liverpool
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Apr 29, 2008
Posts: 91

Similar to Kenp comments above, Artex and PVA mixed to a creamy consistency, not as thick as you would mix to give and Artex effect. Several coats, possibly increasing thickness to get the effect you are after.

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