DIY: A Faux Shiplap, Mural Wall!

DIY Faux Shiplap Mural Wall
DIY: A Faux Shiplap Mural Wall! ^Links to artwork shown in above images, Hydrangeas Star Boat

DIY: Faux Shiplap Mural Wall!

^ Link to artwork shown, “Succulents”
Monique Faella Designs on Facebook

Do you dream in shiplap? I do! I love, love, LOVE IT! 😍 However, I was reluctant to buy and install real shiplap in my home due to A) cost and B) installation. I needed to find my own way that I could achieve the look, with my own two hands, and without the holes and adhesive mess that a real shiplap install could leave behind, should we ever want to take it down for whatever reason. (i.e. if our design taste should change or if we ever were to move and needed the wall to be plain again).

So I got to thinking…why not try and paint the illusion of shiplap? And that’s exactly what I did!

"Crown of Flowers Cow"
^ Link to artwork shown, “Crown of Flowers Cow”…placed on our newly painted faux shiplap wall!


Supplies I used:

  • Disposable, plastic dropcloths
  • Roller paint brushes and paint tray
  • A white, base color of paint (I used Glidden Complete) I recommend an eggshell or satin finish.
  • Duck brand Quick Release Painter’s Tape
  • A ruler
  • A small hand held level
  • A pencil
  • A medium gray paint for the seamline illusion. (I used a cheap sample jar of gray, Glidden Diamond (eggshell finish) paint from a misstint shelf at the hardware store).
  • An angled bristle brush for edging
  • Some dense, black foam brushes
  • Some small to medium fineart bristle brushes
  • I made a cardboard template that helped me when mapping out the faux seams on the wall.


  1. I cleared the area where I would be painting by moving furniture and wall decor.

  2. I setup painting drop cloths over the floor area where I would be painting the walls. I even tacked it down with some painter’s tape, to prevent it from moving.

  3. I lined the perimeter of the walls that I would be painting.

  4. Our wall was beige, so I needed to paint it two coats of the Glidden Complete, white. (If the wall had already been white, I could have skipped this step and I could have moved onto step 5).

  5. Once the base color coats dried, I began mapping out my pin-stripe shiplap faux seams. I did this by using my 6″ high, cardboard template (see in image, below) a pencil, ruler, small level and painter’s tape. I began at the top of the wall near the ceiling and worked my way down. I would use two strips of painter’s tape with a tiny 1/8 or less gap in between the two lines of tape, and this is what would become my faux board seam line, once painted.



  6. A VERY helpful tip: Once the painter’s tape was all laid out on the walls as a template, I painted each future faux seam line, (making sure to paint on the tape’s edge) with my base, white color. I did this as a way of activating the painter’s tape’s reaction so that when I moved on and painted all of these lines with a coat or two of gray, any paint bleeding would be minimal or hopefully non-existant! This step saved me a tremendous amount of touch up time! Also, as I’d complete painting a line with it’s final coat of gray, I’d immediately remove the painter’s tape for that line, so that if the paint had bled, I could wipe the bleed off before it dried completely.

  7. In my master bedroom, I had also painted vertical stripes randomly where they looked right, to serve as the illusion of faux board ends. However, we didn’t even bother with vertical lines in our living-room, and it still looked clean, convincing and great!

  8. Last step, enjoy your newly shiplaped space!

#diy #designonadime #fauxreno #ourfauxrenohome #farmhouse #farmhousestyle #farmhousedecor #shiplap #interiordesign

DIY: Painting Our Kitchen Countertops

DIY Painted Countertop Makeover!
OurFauxRenoHomeTM, DIY Painted Faux Pietra Marble Countertop! ^ Link to Artwork shown, “Horses and Trees in Bloom”

Supplies I used:

  • I printed some images from online searches of “Pietra gray marble countertop” samples, so that I’d have them to refer to, once I began trying to mimic the look of the real stone. 
  • Degreaser kitchen cleaning product
  • A few rolls of paper towels
  • A few paper plates
  • Medium, Fine, and Extra Fine Grit Sandpaper
  • Static Cling disposable dusting cloths (mine were from a dollar store).
  • Duck brand Clean Release Painter’s Tape
  • An array of different sized, dense, black foam, paint brushes. Dense, (Paint/hardware store quality ones, not the cheap craft aisle ones, because those tend to breakdown fast and fall apart, leaving pieces of foam behind on your project). Aaah! 🤦🏻‍♀️
  • A collection of different sized fine artist paint brushes (for veining illusion)
  • A few plastic store bags crumpled up (for creating the illusion of depth – these work great for creating different granite/marble tones)
  • Plastic painter’s drop cloths
  • XIM UMA Bonding Primer
  • Waverly Chalk Paint (I used the shades “Elephant” “Black “Mineral” and “White”
  • A Quart Sized can of Minwax Polycrylic Semi Gloss finish (to seal the surface after the paint has dried)
Some countertop painting supplies
^ A photo of some of the painting supplies I used for this countertop project.
OurFauxRenoHomeTM Bonding Primer Used
^ This is the Bonding Primer we used on our countertops.

“How To” Steps:

  1. You may want to refer to my “Tips for making a big DIY project easier on your household.” Because this project is going to tie-up your kitchen for, at the very least – two days, if not longer.

  2. I took every item that was on the counters and anything else in the room that I was concerned about getting dust/debris on (from sanding) completely out of the kitchen. I was glad I did this because it ended up being a bit of a messy project.

  3. I cleaned the entire counter surface with a kitchen degreaser cleaning product, twice, to ensure I was really getting any and all grime up, off and out of my way! This is crucial because it gives the Primer and paint a clean surface to bond to.

  4. Time for painter’s tape! I masked off the entire outline area of where the counter met the walls, backsplash, sink, stove, etc. as a means of protecting those surfaces. I also taped a plastic dropcloth underneath the edge of the counter, where I wouldn’t be painting, and let it drape over the lower kitchen cabinets so that they would be protected from any paint spillage or splattering, too.

  5. Sanding the surface came next. I used a fine, to medium grit sand paper and sanded the entire counter surface by hand.

  6. I wiped all of the dust off of the surface that had accumulated from sanding, with disposable, dry, static dusting cloths. It took several cloths, and ended up dusting the entire surface twice, to be certain I had removed all of the debris.

  7. Next, I primed the entire counter with two coats of XIM UMA Bonding Primer. If I recall correctly, I had to wait a minimum of 4 hours between coats in non-humid conditions (I recommend double checking that though by reading the side of the can). I actually let the primed surface dry over night, for added measure – just to really give it a thorough chance to dry completely.

  8. It was time to paint with the “Elephant” middle gray chalk paint. I painted the entire surface using dense, black foam paint brushes. I let it dry for 2 hours and then I painted a second coat of the “Elephant” gray. I allowed it to dry completely, for another 2 hours.

  9. Now, I had to begin to add in some depth and dimension by taking a crumpled grocery store, plastic bag and dabbing it into some darker gray paint I made by mixing some “Elephant” gray with a bit of black in plastic cup. (Once mixed, I poured some of paint onto a paper plate, which made it easier to dab the crumpled store bag into the paint). I dabbed the paint onto the counter, all around in organically shaped clusters across the entire surface, while being careful to not be too uniform in my dabbed shapes, or too uniform in regards to the cluster size of dabbed areas. (You don’t want to be too symmetric with this technique, or else it won’t look like stone in the end. (This is the part of the project where I frequently referred to my reference images of the stone that I was trying to emulate.)

  10. Time to repeat step 9, only this time I did it with a new, crumpled plastic store bag, and a cup of paint that I mixed containing “Elephant” gray with a little bit of white added to it. I was now dabbing in some lighter toned highlight areas, which further added to the illusion of depth/texture in the faux stone mural.

  11. I kept finessing steps 9 and 10 until I was satisfied with the depth/texture illusion.

  12. Then, I added veining to the surface, by utilizing a fine, bristle paintbrush, with a little white paint on it. I had to try not to be afraid – I just randomly dragged the brush across my freshly painted surface and let the thickness and width of the vein lines I was painting, vary. (Again, I frequently referred to my reference images of the stone/veining that I was trying to emulate).

  13. Once I was satisfied with the illusion I’d achieved, I let it dry for at least 2 hours.

  14. Now, I applied a thin, even coat of Minwax Polycrylic, semi-gloss finish. (A few pointers: I used Polycrylic as my protective sealer/finish because I had read that it won’t yellow overtime. I also opted for a semi-gloss finish because, I wanted the surface to ultimately have a slight sheen that would be as convincing as a real stone counter. I also thought a semi-gloss surface would be easier to clean than a matte surface would. Additionally, a semi-gloss sheen is more forgiving than a high gloss. If I had opted for a full glossy finish, it wouldn’t hide slight surface, texture imperfections as well as a lesser sheen would.

  15. I used an extra fine grit sand paper and gently buffed the entire surface, evenly, in between coats of the Polycrylic. Tip: I also made sure I didn’t overwork any one area when brushing Polycrylic onto the surface, with a dense black foam paintbrush. If overworked, it would create a lumpy “orange peel” texture. This happened to me a bit, but it wasn’t worth panicking over because in between each application of the coats of Polycrylic, when I sanded and did some gentle buffing (with extra, fine grit sandpaper), it helped to smooth out surface imperfections. The sanding also helped to give additional coats of the Polycrylic sealer, something to adhere to. Each time I finished sanding, I made sure to wipe off the sanding dust with the static cling dust cloths, before applying the next coat of Polycrylic.

  16. Repeat steps 14-15

  17. I applied a (3rd) and final coat of Polycrylic. There was no need to sand after this coat dried…my counter was complete! Only step that remained, was to enjoy staring at my newly painted countertop! (I made sure to not drool on them with all of my gawking! Haha!) 😂


Tips for helping to make my painted kitchen countertop last as long as possible:

  1. I didn’t place anything back onto the counter surface for 48 hours, to give it a real good chance to set.
  2. I had to make sure everyone in my household understood that they needed to be careful with our new surface going forward. No dragging, banging, sliding anything across the surface. Also, no placing hot items directly on the surface, I always use a trivet or good potholder, for hot items. I don’t leave wet items on the counter. If I see any water drops or standing water, I immediately wipe it up. I read somewhere that if someone leaves a glass with a wet bottom, that it will leave a ring on the surface, but once it dries, the ring will diappear. But I try to avoid wet spots as best I can, anyway.


These are links to sites that I used for inspiration before attempting my DIY project:


DIY: Painting Our Kitchen Backsplash!

Kitchen Backsplash Makeover
OurFauxRenoHomeTM DIY: Painting Our Kitchen Backsplash! ^ Link to Artwork shown, “Coffee Mug”

The former color of our kitchen backsplash left a lot to be desired. It was literally the shade of straw, and as a result, was “the straw that broke the camel’s back” in our home! 🐫 Each and every surface in the kitchen was a shade of this color and it motivated me to take action. It was the project that started them ALL. I no longer could tolerate drowning in our sea of beige! Beige floor, beige walls, beige countertops, and beige backsplash…Aaaaah!

So, as a result, I went on a scanvenger hunt thoughout our home and gathered supplies that I hoped I could use to give our kitchen backsplash a facelift, at the very least.

Here are the supplies that I used:

  • Degreaser, kitchen surface, cleaning product
  • A few rolls of paper towels
  • A assortment of different sized, fine art, bristle paint brushes.
  • Dense, black foam, paint brushes in different sizes. (Paint/hardware store quality ones, not the cheap craft aisle ones, because they tend to breakdown fast and fall apart, leaving pieces of foam behind on your project).
  • I used a very inexspensive jar of middle gray paint from the misstint shelf at the hardware store as my grout color. I also used Martha Stewart Muti-Surface Satin Acrylic Paint, in the following colors: white, light gray, and a dark gray. I also had a “pearlescent” white color that I added for some extra sheen on some of the tiles, as well. Each of these paints had a sheen of either an eggshell or a satin, none of them consisted of a flat finish.
  • Martha Stewart Crafts Photo Transfer (for Light colored surfaces.) I used this as my final step, sealer.
  • A couple of different sized rulers, a standard 12″ and a 6″.
  • A pencil
  • I made a small cardboard rectangular template. Mine was a little smaller than a business card
  • Duck Quick Release Painter’s Tape (I used a 7/8″ width and a thin 1/4″ width tape to mask my template for the grout lines.
  • A small level to help make the faux grout lines level.
Some of the painting supplies I used
^ A photo of some of the painting supplies I used for this project.
  1. You may want to refer to my “Tips for making a big DIY project easier on your household!” post

  2. I cleaned the backsplash surface with a kitchen degreaser/cleaner product and paper towels.

  3. I didn’t sand or prime my surface, but it may have added to durability to do so. (So far my backsplash has held up great after a year, without sanding and priming).

  4. I taped off all of the perimeters with painter’s tape (where the counter met the walls, cabinets, etc.)

  5. I painted the entire surface with an acrylic white paint (Martha Stewart Brand). For the most part, I used deferent sized black, dense foam brushes and when I’d go to edge I’d sometimes alternate with a small, but firm fine artist brush. (Better for tight spaces and details). I applied two coats (and allowed overnight drying time, in between coats.)

  6. This next step reminds me of the the Charles Dickens verse, “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.” Because this project was about to become tedious to the tenth degree!

    My cardboard tile sizing template
    ^ My handmade, cardboard tile sizing template.

    This step began with me using my small, almost business card-sized, rectangular template to outline the height of my first tile on the wall. I worked from the bottom of the wall up. I used a pencil to trace the outline of my template. Then I began methodically working my way across the wall with my ruler, level, template and pencil to make marks that I could use as my horizontal line grid for painter’s tape. I made my grout lines a little thicker than 1/8″. After I had a row of measurement pencil marks on the wall, I began placing painter’s tape on the wall. I continued this process until I had mapped all of my horizontal groutlines out in painter’s tape.

  7. I proceeded to paint the horizontal grout lines. I did two coats of a middle gray latex (super cheap sample from the misstint shelf at the hardware store. I let it dry atleast overnight.

  8. Next, I had to layout the vertical groutline template, following the same steps mentioned in step 7, only difference being I did a 50% staggered bond pattern. (For example, this is how bricks are typically stacked). Any other pattern would have just completely fried my brain too much! 😤

  9. After the blue paint template was up for the vertical lines (as depicted in the upper right image, of the above photo) I painted the vertical grout lines with two coats of the middle gray paint.
  10. Now that I had a background and grout lines, it was time to add some of the marble veining details. I used different sized smaller fine art bristle brushes and would work one tile at a time. I’d do some veining in one shade of the gray with a thin, firm brush and then blend it while it was wet with a softer brush so that some tiles would have muted veining and others would have more stark veining illusions, as would be the case with genuine marble tiles.

    The key To achieving a convincing faux marble illusion is to vary the detail on each tile, organically. You don’t want to get too symetric and patternized with everyother tile being a darker shade of gray, for example. It should be pretty random. I had to take a few steps back often to glance at the overall wall to see if it looked right, or I needed to make some adjustments. I also used some of the pearlescent white paint, randomly on some of the tiles and it really helped with the marble illusion.

  11. Finally, after all of the touch-ups, when the paint had dried for awhile and when I was satisfied with the end result, I used Martha Stewart Crafts Photo Transfer (for Light colored surfaces) as a sealer. I had to work rather quickly with this product because it was thick and quickly became tacky. If I brushed one area too much, brushstrokes would appear, so I made a point of moving along as best I could. I applied 2 coats, letting a lot of time (a couple of days pass) between coats to be sure it would set right.

  12. Now, all that was left was to beam from ear at the joy of completing this project!


Tips for making all of the hard work last:

I rarely wipe the Faux painted tiles, but when I do, I use non-abrasive water and a little bit of gentle dishsoap on a wet paper towel. Or a little vinegar and water cleaning solution, to spot clean.

DIY: Painting Our Kitchen Cabinets!



I’m delighted with how our kitchen turned out! However, I’d like to seize this as the perfect opportunity to share that I don’t want to sugarcoat the level of difficulty of this project. It was physically draining and it’s not for anyone who doesn’t have patience for time consuming, and tediously, detailed projects. It completely tied-up our kitchen, but then again, a full-blown renovation would have as well. This type of project isn’t the perfect solution for everyone, so if you’re not big on tackling projects that require vast chunks of time to complete, I wouldn’t recommend it. That said, even though it was challenging, it worked out for us – so it is doable. That is, as long as you’re willing to put in the time and the effort. If you don’t end up opting to do the project, no judgement from me! I completely understand! 😁 Thanks for visiting my page and for reading!

Supplies we used:

  • Degreaser kitchen cleaning product
  • Several rolls of paper towels
  • Fine Grit Sandpaper
  • Static Cling disposable dusting cloths (mine were from a dollar store).
  • Duck brand Clean Release Painter’s Tape
  • An array of different sized black foam paint brushes
  • A synthetic bristle 2″ angle, edging brush
  • A 4″-5″ mini foam roller. (I had several, spare high quality, foam roller refills on hand)
  • Plastic painter’s drop cloths (better to have more than not enough).
  • XIM UMA Bonding Primer
  • Glidden Diamond Paint
  • Duct Tape
  • Mini cabinet door triangles “easels” (they’re plastic trianglular objects that you can rest cabinet doors on, in a makeshift workstation, while you paint one side of the door at a time).
The Bonding Primer and Paint we used to paint our painted cabinets
^ The Bonding Primer and the Paint that we used to paint our kitchen cabinets.

“How to” Steps:

  1. You may want to refer to my “Tips for making a big DIY project easier on your household.” Because this project is going to tie-up your kitchen for at the very least two days, if not longer.
  2. I took every item that was on the counters and anything else in the room that I was concerned about getting dust/debris on (from sanding) completely out of the kitchen. I was glad I did this because it ended up being a bit of a messy project.
  3. My husband and I removed all of the cabinet doors and hardware and systematically laid them out on a makeshift work station in our basement.
Makeshift workstation
^ This was our makeshift workstation where we painted our oak kitchen cabinet doors and draw fronts.
  • We cleaned all of the cabinet boxes and cabinet door/draw front surfaces with a kitchen degreaser cleaning product and paper towels. We did this twice, to ensure we were really getting any and all grime up, off and out of our way! (This is crucial, because it gives the Primer and paint a clean surface to bond to.)
  • Time for painter’s tape! I masked off the entire outline area of where the cabinets met the walls, backsplash, microwave, etc. as a means of protecting those surfaces. I also taped a plastic dropcloth onto where the counter meets the backsplash and I let it drape over the edge of the counter so that it would be protected from any paint spillage or splattering, too. I also did this over my stove and refrigerator, as well. It seriously looked like a scene from the television series, Dexter, with all of the plastic, but I was taking precautions, to help prevent extra clean cleanup – should I spill some paint.
  • I began sanding all of the exteriors of the oak, cabinet boxes with a fine sandpaper. (I didn’t sand the interiors because we made the decision not to paint the interiors of our cabinets). I repeated this sanding step with all of the doors/draw fronts.
  • Now, I wiped down all of the sanded surfaces with static cling dust cloths, to try and remove all of the dust and debris that sanding had left behind.
  • Next, my husband and I primed all of the cabinet box exteriors and the doors. We used a combination of foam brushes, angled edger brushes and mini 4-5″ rollers. Once we got a first coat on, the rollers seemed to work best and were more forgiving on the larger surfaces. The doors were a bit cumbersome since we could only paint one side at a time and had to wait for the Primer to dry before moving onto the next side. Ultimately, we applied 2 coats of the bonding Primer. We were allowing ample drying time inbetween coats, I believe our Primer can said to wait a minimum of 4 hours in non-humid weather (drying time instructions are definitely worth double checking on your can of paint or primer).
  • Now it was paint time. We ended up painting two coats of paint (we had waited a long time between those coats of paint – if I recall correctly,  we would paint a coat and let it dry overnight. One of us edged while the other used a mini 4″-5″ foam roller brush that with packaging that specifically referenced being for “high quality finishes.” Of all the brushes we used, this one gave the most satisfactory finish.
  • (Tip: We made sure to not overwork any one area with the brush/mini roller, we kept moving along so that the paint wouldn’t get globby on the surface. Also, we were sure to keep an eye on the lookout for any surface drips or running of the paint – those we wanted to catch and correct immediately before they got tacky and started to dry.)

  • The paint coverage looked good at this point, so it was time for touchups. If the paint had looked thin in a lot of areas, we would have applied a 3rd coat of paint.
  • Lastly…enjoy!
  • Tips for making all the hard work last:

    • In my research, some people proceeded to apply a protective sealer product, after all of the painting was complete, but I really can’t speak to that. My husband and I didn’t bother, since we used a Bonding Primer that’s suppose to add to the adhesion/durability of of the paint. Our cabinets have been painted for 6 months and get a lot of use and there are only two minor chips in high traffic areas, that luckily aren’t visible. They will fortunately only require a quick touch-up.
    • Don’t clean the cabinet surfaces for atleast two weeks after painting them.
    • I also only use very mild cleaners on them, such as a vinegar and water solution.
    • I left the newly painted doors off of the cabinets for atleast two weeks, before reattaching them to the newly painted, cabinet boxes again. This ensured they were truly dry and avoided me causing unnecessary dings and scratches that would have warranted further touch-ups.


    These are links to sites that I used for inspiration before attempting my DIY project:

    DIY Faux Reno: Creating a Farmhouse Style Kitchen, using paint illusions!

    My husband and I hadn’t liked our old and dated backsplash, countertop, or cabinet finish, ever since we had moved into our home a few years ago. So after a lot of online research, we opted to do a low budget, Faux Reno, Farmhouse Style, makeover to our kitchen! I was tired of waiting to save up enough funds to completely gut and overhaul the kitchen, and I simply couldn’t bear the thought of spending another long, New England, winter couped up in a sea of dreary, beige. So I grabbed my paintbrush and just dove right in! I painted…

    ( ^ Each bullet point item, above, is a clickable link to the corresponding “how to” blog post!)


    It was an almost instant farmhouse style, transformation! It made such a difference to us, after completing it we felt like we were in someone else’s kitchen, and all it cost was time, patience, and paint supplies! I just want to finally share my experience embarking on this project, to help inspire others on a limited renovation budget. The kitchen of my dreams was merely a paintbrush away, and it didn’t break the bank! 😁
    #farmhousestyle #farmhouse #farmhousekitchen #farmhousedecor #fixxerupperstyle

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