Elevating Walls: Techniques for Adding Texture and Decorative Finishes to Drywall

Adding texture or decorative finishes to drywall can transform plain walls into visually appealing features. Whether you’re aiming for a subtle texture or a more pronounced decorative finish, various techniques can enhance the aesthetics of your space. In this article, we’ll explore different methods and tips for adding texture and decorative finishes to drywall, allowing you to create unique and visually striking walls.

Texturing Techniques for Drywall:

  1. Skip Trowel:
    • Using a trowel, apply joint compound in a skip-trowel pattern, creating irregularities and a subtle texture.
  2. Knockdown Texture:
    • Apply joint compound with a roller or sprayer, then lightly flatten or “knock down” the texture with a trowel or drywall knife.
  3. Orange Peel Texture:
    • Achieved by spraying joint compound onto the wall and creating a fine, bumpy texture resembling the skin of an orange.
  4. Slap Brush Texture:
    • Use a stippling brush or slap brush to create a random pattern by dabbing or slapping the joint compound onto the wall.
  5. Venetian Plaster:
    • A technique involving layering tinted plaster, burnishing, and polishing to create a smooth, marble-like finish with depth and sheen.

Decorative Finishes for Drywall:

  1. Stenciling:
    • Use stencils to create intricate designs or patterns on the wall, applying paint or glaze over the stencil for a decorative effect.
  2. Rag Rolling:
    • Apply a base coat and, while wet, roll a bunched-up rag over the surface to create a textured, mottled appearance.
  3. Sponging:
    • Dab a sea sponge or synthetic sponge onto the wall to create a soft, textured finish, often used for a weathered or aged appearance.
  4. Metallic Finishes:
    • Use specialty metallic paints or plasters to create shimmering or reflective effects, adding depth and elegance to the wall.

Tips for Achieving Successful Textured or Decorative Finishes:

  1. Surface Preparation:
    • Ensure the drywall surface is clean, smooth, and free of imperfections before applying texture or decorative finishes.
  2. Practice on Sample Boards:
    • Experiment with different textures or decorative techniques on sample boards to determine the desired look before applying it to the entire wall.
  3. Consistency in Application:
    • Maintain consistency in application techniques, whether using a trowel, roller, brush, or other tools, to achieve an even and balanced finish.
  4. Layering and Gradation:
    • Layer different textures or colors to create depth and visual interest. Gradation in application can add richness to the final result.
  5. Seal and Protect:
    • Once the desired finish is achieved and dried, consider sealing the surface with an appropriate clear coat or sealer to protect the texture or decorative finish.
  6. Consider Lighting:
    • The texture or decorative finish can be enhanced or subdued by lighting. Experiment with different lighting to showcase the wall’s features effectively.
  7. Cleanup and Maintenance:
    • Clean tools and surfaces immediately after finishing. Ensure proper storage of leftover materials for potential touch-ups.


Enhancing drywall with texture or decorative finishes allows for a wide array of creative possibilities. By using various techniques and following these tips, you can add depth, character, and individuality to your walls, creating a space that is not only visually captivating but also reflective of your personal style and creativity. Experimentation and attention to detail will lead to stunning and unique walls that elevate the aesthetic appeal of your interior.

By Ionut

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