What Does Polished Plaster Look Like?

by | Apr 25, 2023 | Polished Plaster

Polished plaster creates a highly polished surface that looks like marble. This is the finish that most people think of when they consider polished plaster. However, the truth is that polished plaster is available in a wide range of finishes.

Polished plaster has become more than just a cheap substitute for real marble. Today, it’s become a luxurious surface finish and an art form.


The Main Effect

One of the main effects of polished plaster is to look like a natural stone finish, such as marble. However, it can also look similar to limestone or even concrete. Professional plasterers are developing new polished plaster finishes using techniques that are quite involved. In addition, the list of finishes has grown as polished plaster has become more popular as an interior design and architectural finish.

In the following sections, we’ll discuss the standard polished plaster finishes. These can be combined or tweaked to create different effects. The results can be stunning. Plasterers can use stencil design, banding, and other bespoke finishes to achieve almost any finish you can dream up.


Marmorino Spatula

Marmorino Spatula is a polished plaster finish that has the appearance and feel of real marble. The finish has a silky-smooth feel and is cool to the touch. The finish also has a reflective quality, which allows light to bounce around an interior space.

This finish is most often used in contemporary interiors, usually in more subtle colours or as an arresting feature. This is a polished plaster finish that’s sure to give your home’s interior a luxurious appearance.


Marmorino Polished Plaster – Stone-Like Appearance

Marmorino has a mottled look; however, this can be made rougher and more pronounced, depending on how the plaster is applied.

This polished plaster can be applied with no or little surface “movement” or with a very pronounced pattern running throughout.

This finish can be left more matt or highly polished, whichever you prefer.


Smooth Stucco Venetian Plaster – Consistently Polished Surface

Smooth Stucco has a seamless polished surface that offers depth along with a luxurious richness. You’ll notice this finish includes speckles or flecks, making this plaster quite interesting.

This plaster is smooth to the touch and can be applied with little “movement” within the finish, with a minimalistic pattern.


Pitted Polished Plaster – Textured, Not Rough

Next on our list is Pitted polished plaster, which has a finish similar to weathered stone. It’s a finish that’s easily underestimated; however, when used correctly and with the right lighting, the finish seems to come to life.

Whether the polished plaster is natural or synthetic, light that falls on the pitted surface creates drama and depth.

The finish is silky smooth to the touch, which comes as a surprise. Many people believe the surface will feel rough due to the polished plaster’s pitted appearance.


Dragged Effect Polished Plaster – Textured & Directional

Dragged polished plaster also offers a stone effect and has the look of real stone that’s been weathered over many centuries. The weathered feature of this plaster has a directional flow.

Dragging can be applied with the effect flowing horizontally, vertically, or in a diagonal direction.

Lighting works its magic on this polished plaster effect, further bringing out its texture. Light can also create the illusion of a longer or taller wall when used correctly.


Granito Venetian Plaster – A Heavily Textured Stone Effect

Granito is one of the more textured finishes available. This polished plaster finish has a rugged appearance and is a bit rough to the touch. Some say this seems like a heavier version of the Pitted finish.

This polished plaster finish adds depth and drama to walls and ceilings. Light adds even more drama and depth when it bounces off the surface, creating intriguing shadows. Granito has a more 3-D effect.


SMG Venetian Plaster – Flawlessly Polished to a Mirror Finish

SMG is a specialised polished plaster finish. It has a highly shiny appearance, with minimal or no surface movements or patterns. It looks almost like a sheet of glass when seen from an angle. This finish has a depth you won’t find in any other polished plaster finish. It’s usually applied in 6 to 7 coats.

This finish looks better when used with colours such as black and white, which are the best choices for this finish.

SMG works best in areas that have plenty of natural light.


Travertine Polished Plaster – Looks Like Natural Weathered Stone

Travertine is a polished plaster that is created with a coarse marble grain that’s added to the plaster. The application technique creates a finish that looks like weathered stone. The pattern can be either a horizontal or vertical dragged texture.

This finish is perfect to use in pool areas and large walls to create depth and texture.

Travertine has a stunning banding effect that can be created using this plaster. To achieve this look, a contrasting smooth plaster is applied on top to create directional bands that follow the Travertine. Marmorino Spatula or Marmorino work well when used correctly with Travertine.


Stencil Design Polished Plaster – Embossed or Recessed Looks

Polished plaster makes it possible to create amazing techniques to achieve different looks. It’s even possible to stencil a design into the plaster finish.

A professional plasterer can use stencils to either create recessed or embossed designs in the plaster finish. This means it’s possible to become very creative and add company logos, text, art, and more.


Banding Venetian Plaster Effect – Horizontal or Vertical Stripes

Banding polished plaster is a method that can take different appearances. The bands are created in different widths, consistent widths, or varying sizes to create a “barcode” effect. The stripes can be horizontal or vertical in the finish.

Contrasting finishes can also be used to create a unique effect. For instance, a textured polished plaster can be used as the background, with a smooth contrasting finish applied over the top to create bands.

The effect can be further enhanced by using contrasting colours or sticking with the same colour in different shades.


Bespoke Polished Plaster – Working Together to Bring Your Vision to Life

At Stucco & Stucco, we can work with you to create bespoke polished plaster finishes with colours to match or stencil a design into the finish. There’s no end to the possibilities when you choose polished plaster finishes.

As professional plasterers, we can create a range of finishes and textures to suit your needs.

We’ll work with you to bring your dream to life!

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