Fabulous Whitewash DIY Basics

Last Updated on September 19, 2023 by Annie Baldwin

Whitewash is a classic, natural paint used for centuries across the globe. Often seen on breezy Greek islands, whitewash graces plaster, concrete, stone, and masonry with its matte, chalky finish. This lime-based paint has fabulous benefits:

  • Natural antiseptic properties that deter insects
  • Fire resistant
  • Zero VOCs (volatile organic compounds)
  • Zero synthetic biocides
  • Lets surfaces breathe
  • Eco-friendly and nontoxic

What is Whitewash?

Whitewash is simply a mixture of hydrated lime and water, sometimes called limewash. Hydrated lime is available at most hardware stores. When mixed with water, the lime becomes a milky solution that dries into a matte, calcified paint.

Whitewash can be used indoors or outdoors to paint a variety of porous surfaces like plaster, concrete, brick, stucco, adobe, and stone. It allows surfaces to breathe and won’t trap moisture like some modern paints.

For 1000 square feet of coverage, you’ll need:

  • 5 gallons hydrated lime
  • 3 gallons water
  • Pigment or laundry bluing (optional)

How to Apply Whitewash

  1. Mix 5 gallons hydrated lime with 3 gallons water until lump-free
  2. Thin with more water if needed to achieve a milky consistency
  3. Add pigment for color (optional)
  4. Add 1 tsp laundry bluing per gallon for a cooler white (optional)
  5. Apply to dampened surfaces using a brush or sprayer
  6. Apply in multiple thin coats to allow drying in between
  7. Seal with a limewater solution for exterior surfaces

For exterior surfaces, add 2 pounds of salt per gallon to the lime and water for natural antiseptic properties that help protect the finish.

With simple, natural ingredients, rustic charm, and eco-friendly benefits, whitewash brings beauty to any home. Bask in the matte, calcified glow of this classic, breathable DIY paint.

By GreenChiCafe

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