The glacis

The glacis

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Perfect for obtaining beautiful patinas, the glaze is a colored or neutral layer which lets the background color show through. It is applied to painted walls. If the support must be clean, without cracks or large holes, it does not need to be flat, because the defects of the wall are an integral part of the decoration. As this finish is not covering, the state of the background as well as its color are to be taken into account in the choice of the color of the glaze.

Three do-it-yourself glaze formulas

Traditional oil glaze recipe

If there are ready-to-use glazes, under the name of patina, this mixture is really very simple to make. Allow 1 liter for 20 to 25 m2, at the rate of:
2/3 balsamic turpentine
1/3 linseed oil
3% or a few drops of siccative (to speed up drying)
Natural plant or mineral pigments.

Acrylic glaze for busy people

Plan 50 cl of glaze for a room of about 25 m2. Proportions:
10 cl of acrylic binder
10 cl of water

Danièle's glacis

Strongly add tinted paint, with water or thinner depending on your support, until you get a liquid with a consistency close to that of water, and use as a traditional glaze.


On your clean, dry support covered with two coats of white or colored satin paint according to the desired final effect, apply the glaze on approximately 1 m2 with the thumb brush without uniforming and in all directions.


Then work the glaze with a patina brush, failing that, a varnishing brush or a poaching brush or a cloth. Poach the paint with the tips of the bristles to remove the brush marks and to melt the glaze in light and shade. The gesture is quite simple, just tap the surface by slightly twisting your wrist, a bit as if we were forming commas.

The pro's advice

Absorbent supports, such as plaster or plasterboard, will be printed with an undercoat and covered with two coats of satin paint to prevent the appearance of joint strips. Work in pairs: the first applies the glaze and the other works it. The fittings dry quickly. To reduce visible signs of recovery, do not work in a straight line. It is possible to avoid connecting lines by moistening the brush from time to time and then wringing, or by moistening the wall with a sponge. But beware ! If you moisten the wall, do it a few minutes before installing the glaze, otherwise you will cause the appearance of halos.

Good to know

This glaze dries slowly and gives you the opportunity to work at your own pace, without marking the times. Once dry, you can cover it with a layer of protective varnish. Know-how - home decor © La maison rustique - éditions Flammarion, 2006