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Exploring Strie

Exploring Strie

Exploring Strie

At Blue Sky we love experiment with color and texture. Lately I have been trying to come up with new ways of create the impression of depth. The strié (pronounced stree-AYE), French for “striated” or “scratched”, involves pulling a dry brush or a rubber comb through a wet coat to leave a subtle striping in the finish. It is also called dragging or combing.

With this sample board, we started by experimenting with shades of color. I created a mint color by combining two colors of Chalk Paint® decorative paint by Annie Sloan, Florence and Pure White. The board was given a base coat of mint.Florence Chalk Paint Base

While the base was still wet, the two original color were separately applied on to the board, using a squirt bottle (but this could also be done by dripping paint onto the board). Typically a strié is done in layers, allowing for drying in between layers. But we wanted to try a wet technique.

Florence and Pure White


A large flat brush was used to comb through the layers of paint creating a multidimensional softness, color-washed, somewhat marbled look.

Combine Florence and Pure White Chalk Paint

I let this dry and applied a coat of Clear Soft Wax, buffed and left it overnight to harden a bit.

Marblized Florence and Pure White Chalk paint

Then I started on a contrasting technique. I sectioned off a piece of the board and added a fresh layer of wax to the this area. I used a brush to apply some Pure White. You can see the layer of wax doesn’t allow for the paint to penetrate the first design.


White Wax Application

I took an old bristled brush (one that had some separation to the bristles) and dragged the brush straight across with a firm and deliberate motion. The combination of wax and paint created a glaze-like medium. I like how the stiffness of the wax allowed for the stripping effect to be applied with ease. The wax was left to harden (no buffing).

White Wax on top of Marblized Colors

As you can see, the first design effect is soft and the second is more pronounced and linear. I think the contrast would work well on a more modern piece of furniture, transforming a flat surface to a visually striking piece.

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