Painting & Wallpapering/painting


I have several question. My first concerns adding mica to paint to add a reflective property. I read of someone that is very green conscious and they added mica to increase the reflected light thus lessening the amount of light need to illuminate the room. My worry is that I've been unable to find mica in the paint stores, they all say they no nothing of it and that I would have to get it from a craft store. I don't want my walls to be crafty. My second questions concerns color washing with glaze. The house I live in now is painted in this fashion in the living room but the paint is worse than a flat paint in that it scuffs from the least little bump and is completely unwashable. Can this look be accomplished with a glossier finish? Also the house we are moving into has expensive vinyll wallpaper in several of the bathrooms but it is so ugly but so completely stuck. What's the best way to remove it or paint over it. I've striped wallpaper before it wasn't of this high Of quality or stuck so efficiently and completely water proof. I also have a room border I need to remove or cover. Strawberries in the bedroom? Please help soon. I've posted these questions over and over and I keep getting answers well replies where the expert says this isn't their area Of expertise. Our paint store has paint on sell 40% off but it ends this weekend and I've been trying to figure what to purchase. To glanze or to just rag roll to get the two color effect though I do love the look of the wash.

HI Donna, yes you have MANY questions. I will just try to address them the best I can but probably not conclusive.
Here goes:
1. mica
I would NOT recommend trying to find mica to add to paint. If you want to increase the feeling of light, use Full Spectrum paints that do not include black. and (both from Ellen Kennon). You will not find it at a low cost, however.
If your store has paint on sale just use light colors. Not bright white.

2. colorwash glaze
Yes you can do this but it needs the right materials: try Modern Masters. Read instructions carefully. Use the right base paint. You might have to use a satin clearcoat/topcoat for protection and washability. It will depend on the paint brand and your technique.

3. stripping or painting wallpaper
Strip it do not paint over wall paper. Same thing with the border. Strip then do the right prep then paint. Note: in any case you will have to wash the wall very very thoroughly then probably use an oil base primer so your latex topcoat paint does not re-activate the glue from the wallpaper. BIN/zinnsner makes a low-odor, fast drying oil base primer/sealer with a flat type finish (some primers are sort of glossy finish). It makes a good primer for painting.

4. paint on sale?
Get your light colors in eggshell. Get your base for faux finishes probably in satin. READ THE FAUX PRODUCT INSTRUCTIONS and follow them closely.

5. what to do?
the above. and have fun! DO YOUR RESEARCH about the faux finish product brands you want to use. Modern Masters or Faux Effects are pretty good, I think.

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Barbara Jacobs


I am able to answer questions about paint color and wall covering selection (interior and exterior, but in this category it's interior)and, in many cases, decorative ("faux") finishing for many types of surfaces. I can also answer some paint product and application questions but am primarily consulting about paint colors.I can also answer questions about Full Spectrum paints.


My experience as a color consultant is broad and includes a wide variety of color issues. Since 1984, I've been helping clients their very best environments using color as the foundation. My experience includes over 20 years in the field of creating and installing fine decorative finishes, and specifying paint colors.

IACC: International Association of Color Consultants/Designers: member since 1996, accredited since 2000. Historic District Commission: Medfield, Massachusetts

Journal of Architectural Coatings (magazine article, print) Design& - blog for this site (current) 2005 – 2008 2005 Boston Women’s Business Jrnl. Subject of interviews and participation in interviews for other publications. Current: my own blog at

Academia di Belle Arti: Florence, Italy BA: University of Minnesota: focus: painting and printmaking University of California, Berkelely: painting department IACC: International Association of Color Consultants/Designers: Accredited member since 2000

Awards and Honors
IACC: international exhibit included four of my color design projects: 2010

Past/Present Clients
Private clients. I prefer not to include names here, but many testimonials are available for viewing at my web site at the "testimonials" page.

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