[RESOLVED] Can You Paint Matt Over Silk?

Good question (especially the latter part) and a question that often crops up on here In fact if you were to google “painting matt over silk” google returns 6,470000 results. Worrying…. So I thinking most decorators will know that it is a definite no no without first keying the surface (I hope) The vinyl paint has a glossing effect that affects the matt as it dries, it compromises adhesion of ths matt and you can get the classic ‘dried up riverbed look’ So it should be abraded, doesn’t have to be dry sanded, could use wet and dry 😎 This step de-glosses and provides a key 🤓 Another step I also employ is a wash with sugar soap then water to remove any contaminants. Another route you could choose which will be more expensive but negate the sanding down, is to first apply a coat of zinsser 123 primer. This provides an ideal base for the matt to adhere to [1]
The cause of a matt paint cracking and crazing over silk or a similar surface is the matt paint is applied over the top. It softens the silk causing it to expand, then the matt dries on the surface first, then the silk underneath dries and contracts causing it to pull the matt apart (crazing). Like the pictures underneath. This doesn’t happen EVERY time you paint matt over silk, so if it hasn’t happened to you then you are one of the lucky ones, but it all depends on how reactive the substrate is. This could be down to quality/how thick the silk is as to how much it expands. (a massive thanks to Aden Portillo for their observation). [2]
Image #2
Well I am afraid you are the lucky one then cos it had done happen to us, and we even phoned the Dulux helpline you get on the side of the tins and they confirmed do not paint over silk with matt. Too late as we have had already found out ourselves. Their solution was to scrape off ALL the paint back to the plaster!!! Honestly, we have said s*d that and papered it. It looked aweful. We have had terrible problems trying to get silk paint the last time we redecorated. We always use either once or solo, but they only do it in Matt or they have done earlier this year, perviously we used solo silk, cant get it now. Course the flippen makers Crown don’t tell you, you can’t paint over it with Silk, only when you phone up to complain. (revised by Jose E. From Zibo, China on January 6, 2020) [3]
Tjdecor.co.uk goes on to mention that yes it is possible to paint Matt emulsion over Vinyl Silk, however you need to follow a simple few steps before applying the matt emulsion over silk emulsion. To begin sand down all areas that have been coated with the Vinyl Silk to provide a good key and also help to remove the shiny sheen from the area. This job can be hard work and very time consuming. An easier way (recommended by Dulux / Akzo Nobel) is applying a coat of soft sheen paint over the Vinyl Silk. Another solution although slightly more expensive is to apply a coat of Zinsser Gardz as a base coat. (last revised 88 days ago by Thaddeus Vu from Aleppo, Syria) [4]

Article References

  1. https://www.mybuilder.com/questions/v/50333/painting-matt-emulsion-over-silk
  2. https://www.thedecoratorsforum.com/matt-cracking-crazing-over-silk/
  3. https://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/discussion/128955/best-way-to-paint-over-silk-finish-paint
  4. https://www.tjdecor.co.uk/the-desperate-decorator/2020/3-5
Kelly-Anne Kidston

Written by Kelly-Anne Kidston

I am a writer of many words, from fiction to poetry to reviews. I am an avid reader and a lover of good books. I am currently writing my first novel and would love to find some beta readers who are interested in getting an early look.

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