Random thoughts of a rapidly ageing Englshman who wishes he was retired and living in Fance

Thursday, 16 April 2009

The wonder of Crepi

A funny thing happened to me on holiday......I discovered Crepi.
Now I've heard whispers of its virtues but never actually knowingly laid my hands or eyes on any, and certainly never bought any from round the back of the supermarket.
Anyway if you like I didn't know, Crepi is one of a family of textured paints sold in France and this holiday I was feeling rash and a bit on the edge, so decided to go in for a bit of extreme decorating. Push the envelope, that kind of thing.
The thing is in a 250+ year old country cottage, not all the plasterwork is pristine and in the bedroom we have what you might call a "problem wall". Actually there are two of them, or possibly four but we'll get round to them later.
In this case its not even plasterwork. It seems to be splattered concrete on bits of stone and flint, painted sometime when my ganmother was young in strangely durable white stuff. All complete with with cracks, holes and lots of places for spiders to hang out.

What should I do? Ideas ranged from selling, to plasterboarding, chipping it off and re-building and....Crepi.

So, as we wandered around Mr Bricomarche I spotted the baffling array of Crepies (or should that be Crepii) available. After much deliberation I picked the cheapest tin which was labelled Tont Pie (turns out to mean natural stone colour), to use as a bit of an experiment. After all I could hardly make matters worse and for a tenner I thought it worth a try.

So on Monday, fortified by a rather decent Easter Lunch at Grand Ma's I set about the wall. Nicole had explained that she'd used a brush to apply the stuff to one of their Gites, whilst Barrie suggested a trowel. Knowing my skill as a plasterer I opted for the brush.

Prising the lid off I discovered that Crepi is basically paint with sand in it. How much depends on the grade, etc. but this stuff was pretty thick.

And it worked a treat.

It filled the cracks and holes and smoothed the lumps. Not a fine plastered finish of course - the wall is still pretty rough and the surface is a bit like coarse sandpaper or chaux, but its quite a transformation, and I can always paint it with something finer to finish it off.

Obviously my trial size bucket of the stuff wasn't enough to fill the holes in our bedroom wall, but I'll be back for some more in May to finish the job off.
I was so excited by the result we had to call at Leroy Merlin's in Tours on the way home to check out their encouragingly vast array of similar products. Forget boring matt/silk emulsion on your oh so dull smooth walls, they have loads of texture based products...and I'm iching to try a few more!

The only question in my mind is why isn't B&Q stuffed with this kind of stuff?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Artex ready mixed textured finish coating?