I want to texture the drywall in my home. What's the best way to do this?
If it’s just one room, you can attempt one the options below. But if it’s the whole house, I recommend you talk to a local pro who will commit to a production schedule and stick with it until every room is done. It’s hard physical work and can get frustrating. To avoid the difficulty of texturing, consider painting to look like texture. Simply prep and paint your walls with a base color, then apply glaze in a complementary color, allowing some of the base color to show through. The drama will come from the technique you choose to apply the glaze: light brush patterns, sea sponge daps, feathers, or spray. Experiment with your canvas and be creative! In the future, if you get tired of it, you can simply paint it over. If you decide to actually add a raised texture to the surfaces, it will be very difficult to undo if it does not turn out well. So choose wisely. To save time, new homebuilders use paint machines with hoppers to spray the texture on ceilings and walls. The cheapest is a drywall mud full of little Styrofoam balls. They just spray it on, let it dry, and paint it white. For a more modeled finish, homebuilders will spray or roll on a gloppy mud coating, then when partially dry, “knock down” the high spots with smooth strokes of a 18”-24” flexible blade. Both are messy procedures, so the rooms must be clear of everything. Visit a local, professional builder’s supply to ask about the options (and don’t be shy to ask for some contractors’ business cards). Another technique that produces an antique-looking finish is to apply a thin, uneven layer of pre-mixed drywall “topping” compound to a wall. Then, using a 6”-12” wide taping knife, smooth it to create a texture with overlapping, arched strokes in a fish scale kind of pattern. Don’t get too fussy yet. Let it dry, then knock off any boogers. Very light sanding can even it out a little more. Don’t overwork it. Then apply PVA primer and a couple coats of paint to finish it off.