Limewash is a centuries old decorative finish made from a short recipe of ingredients from the earth. But don't let limewash's small ingredient list & age fool you into thinking it's out of date! Its simplicity & durability initially made it useful, while its unique beauty & sustainable qualities continued demand for it up to the modern day. Whether you're restoring an old building, painting a modern home, redecorating an interior, or treating hardwood, the uses for limewash are diverse:
(Limewash on stucco)
Limewash on historic buildings not only looks beautifully charming, it is necessary in order to avoid expensive building mistakes.
The bones of historic buildings are masonry walls (stucco, brick, stone, & plaster). These porous surfaces work with the building's natural environment by absorbing & evaporating excess moisture in the air to avoid moisture buildup. This breathability requires the use of equally breathable paints, like limewash, to allow old walls to filter the air for a healthier home.
Using modern synthetic paints is like wrapping your home in plastic; it creates a seal over the walls & traps moisture underneath. Over time, this moisture builds up under the paint & leads to bubbling, peeling, decay, & eventual structural damage.
If you have an old home treat it with limewash for a timeless look that will keep it protected for years to come.
(Limewash on interior stucco)
Looking for a lived-in, natural feel for your next interior design project? The textured, matte effects of a limewash finish will give you that exact look. Some big-box paint companies have created faux versions of limewash to achieve this look, but these don't react the same or provide you with any of the health benefits that genuine limewash does.
True limewash & limepaint are great finishing tools for interior designers, such as Iris Zonlight of Blue Ocean Design, based in The Hamptons, Sag Harbor. Charleston Limewash's limepaint works well for her high-end, oceanfront clients. It's vapor-free, long-lasting, & suitable for a variety of surfaces (plaster, brick, wood paneling, stone...) As if that wasn't enough, limewash's absorbency allows it to act like a filter that wicks toxins, CO2, & moisture from the air to create a cleaner interior environment.
(Limewash on exterior stucco)
So limewash is an ancient style of finish ideal for traditional surfaces, does that mean you can't get the same centuries-old look on your modern building? Absolutely not. There are many faux versions of limewash on the market, but neither their appearance nor their health benefits can stand up to the real thing. That's why we created a line of Limepaints to compliment our limewashes so you can get that old, romantic look on your newer home. Our Limepaint is still a breathable, eco-friendly finish, the only difference is the inclusion of an extra binder to allow it to adhere to modern non-porous surfaces. Old-world finally meets new world.
(Charleston Woodlime on french oak & heart pine )
Limewash was originally used to protect wood it from the elements & insects. Today, it is more commonly used for its decorative qualities as it gives a distressed, antiqued look to surfaces (think beautifully faded driftwood). The natural grains in wood paneling, flooring, & furniture deserve to be enhanced & protected, not suffocated by thick synthetic stains. Limewash can be used as either a stain or a rub to preserve & enhance the natural character of your wood.