Glazing Ideas

Updated April 17, 2017

You can apply glazes to all sorts of things from walls to ornaments to create a shiny finish. Varnishes applied with a brush create a smooth finish, but different glazing techniques -- either using different objects to apply the glaze, or mixing the glaze with different colours or materials such as paper or glitter -- can create dramatic and eye-catching effects.

Multi-colour Sponging

Sponging is a way to apply textured glaze to walls or furniture. To create a three-colored finish, apply a base coat of eggshell paint and leave it to dry. Then mix one part latex paint (in a different colour from the base coat) with four parts latex glaze. Dip a sponge into the mixture and press onto the base coat, working over the entire surface. Create a glaze mix using the same quantities in a different colour again and work this over the top of the surface.

PVA Floral Decoupage

Create a glazed picture effect with découpage techniques. Découpage involves cutting out images and pasting them onto a surface to appear like paintings. Cut around the outline of pictures of flowers from old magazines with a craft knife, being careful to leave no visible borders. Paint a coat of PVA glue over the surface, dampen each picture with a little water, place it on the surface and brush over it with more PVA glue. Continue overlapping each flower slightly. When the entire surface is covered in flowers, leave it to dry before adding a final glaze coat of clear PVA glue.


Create a "sand" effect glaze with stippling. Paint a base coat in eggshell or semigloss paint and leave it to dry. Paint over it with a mix of one part latex paint (in a different colour from the base coat) to four parts latex glaze. Press a stippling brush straight onto the surface and lift it off; it will take tiny dots of glaze with it, creating a textured effect in the glaze. Continue across the entire surface.


Add extra sparkle to any glaze finish by mixing in glitter before painting it on. This technique works particularly well on small craft projects where you are using a simple coat of PVA glue for a glaze. Simply mix in a small amount of glitter into the PVA before painting it onto the surface. When dry, seal with a second coat of PVA to prevent the glitter flaking off.

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About the Author

Mary Stewart has been a news and features journalist since 2000. Her work has appeared in U.K. national newspapers and magazines, including "The Times (of London)," "The Sunday Telegraph," "The Mail on Sunday" and "The Guardian". She has a B.A. in journalism from Napier University.