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Creative Caulking


Caulking not only waterproofs and improves energy efficiency, it allows you to create custom-made decorating pieces. So, load up your caulking gun and release some creativity!

decorative column
Create a spectacular architectural accent for any room using some very simple materials. You can also use this technique on clay pots, furniture, lamps and picture frames to create fabulous effects.

1.   Pencil the placement of the vines on the surface to be decorated.

2.   To make the vine stem, cut a slice off the caulking tube approximately ¾" down. Extrude the caulk onto the surface following the pencil lines.

3.   To make the fine tendrils, cut a ¼" slice off the tip of the new tube of caulking. Place tendrils randomly along the fine. To make curly tendrils, move the caulking in small circles.

4.   To make the leaves, cut the cap off the tube of caulking as shown in the diagram. Place cap back on caulking tube with the ¾" slice off the end. The cut cap should be placed on the tube so that the V notch is pointing to the top of the caulking gun. Extrude leaves along the vine in pairs.

   To make grapes, slice the caulking tube ¾" - 1" from the top. Make small blobs with the caulk - they should look like large chocolate ships. Extrude the blobs on the surface in a grape cluster design. Dip your finger in water and smooth the tops of the grapes. To achieve a more 3-D effect, place a few more grapes on the top. Let dry 2-3 days before painting.

how to paint

1.   Paint the surface with base color. Let dry.

2.   Mist the surface with water and color wash using one of the accent colors. Repeat the color wash with all your chosen colors until you have achieved the desired effect.

3.   Brush on dark accent color mixed with glaze in caulking areas and wipe off. This will accentuate your caulking relief.

If columns are not a standard architectural feature in your home, it's easy to create your own with an unwaxed sono tube (used as a concrete form, they are available wherever concrete supplies are sold). Paint the tube with primer, then do the caulking relief by following the lines on the tube. The column ends can be made from high density foam insulation. Set the sono tube in the center of the cut out ends of foam insulation and trace around it with a pencil. Then cut a ¼" trough, 1" deep, in from your line. Remove the foam in the trough, fill it with latex contact cement, attach the column, then paint the ends to match. That's it! Beautiful instant architecture.

what you'll need
  • latex paint - base coat, top coats (2 colors) and accent color
  • glaze
  • acrylic caulking
  • caulking gun
  • utility knife
  • pencil
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