Shine On: Loving Lacquered Walls

via Anthony Baratta LLCLacquered walls are captivating. With the allure of a hard candy shell, they are glamorous, dramatic…and a little left of center.

Adding depth and an aqueous sheen, lacquered walls are not for the timid. Bold reds, deep blues and murky blacks are popular. Darker values enhance the luster of the surface in comparison to lighter values.  Both contemporary and traditional spaces are complemented by this shiny, happy finish.

Lacquering is actually an old practice dating back to ancient China, Japan and India when it was applied to decorative objects. Organic, or real lacquer, is a reddish secretion from the lac insect or from the T. vernicifluum tree. True lacquer finishes are solvent-based, and have largely been supplanted by oil or water-based, high-gloss paint. Nowadays, the terms “lacquered” and “high-gloss” are often used interchangeably.

Lacquered walls require more wall preparation than traditional matte or eggshell finishes– a lot more. But the hard work pays off in the end. Walls need to be perfectly flat, clean and free of any nail holes or nicks. The paint is usually sprayed on by a well-seasoned professional painter in multiple layers, often with a between-coat sanding. Spraying prevents brush and roller marks.

Akin to a mirror finish, the reflection off of high-gloss surfaces will magnify any imperfection exponentially, which is why adequate wall prep is key. Yet, reflection is also its asset.  High-gloss sheens add light to a space.

Wall surfaces and architectural molding are often treated in the same color and finish to create a unified appearance. Ceilings are also candidates for this glorious gloss. However, because light travels more efficiently on horizontal surfaces, seams and scars become even more apparent on ceilings than on walls.

Consider location for lacquered walls carefully. High-gloss finishes are lively, so entertaining spaces like dining rooms, living areas and receptions are ideal. Serene, reflective spaces such as spas are not. Despite their durable finish, lacquered walls do require consistent upkeep to maintain their shine. To keep fingerprints at bay, dust the surface with a feather duster and gently wipe away smudges with warm water on a damp, soft cloth.

Looking to add some shine in your life? Check out some excellent examples:

 

via Elle Decor. Design by Steven Gambrel

via Elle Decor. Design by Steven Gambrel

via Joni Spear Interiors

via Joni Spear Interiors

via Rikki Snyder Photography

via Rikki Snyder Photography

via Rikki Snyder Photography

via Rikki Snyder Photography

via Jagoda Architecture

via Jagoda Architecture

via Fine Paints of Europe

via Fine Paints of Europe

via Archer & Buchanan Architecture Ltd.

via Archer & Buchanan Architecture Ltd.

via Loadingdock5

via Loadingdock5

via Segev Photography

via Segev Photography

via MuseInteriors.Photo by Michael Partenio

via MuseInteriors.Photo by Michael Partenio

via Anthony Baratta LLC

via Anthony Baratta LLC

via Tim Cuppett Architecture

via Tim Cuppett Architects

via Branca Interiors

via Branca Interiors

Associated links:

Elle Decor-Steven Gambrel

Joni Spear Interiors

Rikki Snyder Photography

Jagoda Architecture

Fine Paints of Europe

Archer & Buchanan Architecture

Loadingdock5

Segev Photography

MuseInteriors

Anthony Baratta LLC

Tim Cuppett Architects

Branca Interiors

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