The Many Benefits of Venetian Plaster

by | Jan 31, 2023 | Venetian Plaster

Updated 16/10/2023

When you’re thinking about renovating your home, the goal is to make it more beautiful and stylish. So, why not choose to include Venetian plaster in your plans?

Venetian plaster comes with many benefits and is used in a wide range of residential and corporate buildings. You can have a bespoke wall finish in every room of your home with Venetian plaster!

In this article, we’ll take a look at the benefits of Venetian plaster for your home. But first, we share information about Venetian plaster so you can get an idea of what it is and what it has to offer.


What is Venetian Plaster?

Venetian plaster is a type of plaster finish that can be added to walls and other surfaces. The plaster is made from slaked lime, marble dust, and marble chips. These materials give the plaster its unique appearance.

Plaster of this kind can be used indoors on ceilings, walls, and other surfaces. It provides a finish that looks like polished marble, travertine, or limestone. However, it’s also possible to create bespoke finishes with this plaster with the addition of natural or synthetic colourants. Once it’s been applied, the plaster is then sealed with a layer of protective wax, such as beeswax.

Venetian plaster was developed by ancient Romans, who used the plaster due to its durability and beauty. However, during the Middle Ages, Venetian plaster was not used; however, it was rediscovered by an Italian architect.

The plaster was used in Venice, where the buildings were constructed on wooden stilts to keep them above the water. The problem was that marble and other stone applied to walls made the buildings too heavy, causing them to sink into the water. So, Venetian plaster was used to have the look of marble without the weight that goes with this beautiful stone.

From that time to now, Venetian plaster has become popular in both commercial and residential spaces.


The Benefits of Venetian Plaster

Here’s our list of the benefits you can expect from Venetian plaster!


1. Environmentally Friendly

Venetian plaster has been used for centuries and is becoming popular once again. This plaster is made from natural materials that are non-toxic. In addition, the plaster doesn’t contain harmful chemicals or give off VOCs (volatile organic compounds).

The plaster also works to inhibit the growth of mould and creates an anti-bacterial surface due to the lime in its ingredients.

These qualities all work to create a durable surface that’s free of toxins. Venetian plaster can be used in homes with family members who have allergies and respiratory conditions.


2. Durable

Venetian plaster is also a highly durable wall finish. The finish was used in homes that were destroyed centuries ago in Pompey, Italy. Archeologists have uncovered beautiful walls made with Venetian plaster that were not damaged by the volcano that covered the city. With proper care, today’s Venetian plaster can also last for hundreds of years.

While the plaster is durable, it is not non-destructive. It can be scratched or chipped if something hard hits a surface covered with this material. Even so, the finish is tough and can withstand plenty of wear and tear.


3. Sustainable Material

As well as being an environmentally friendly material, Venetian plaster is also a sustainable choice. The plaster is made with lime (calcium carbonate) which is a renewable resource.

What’s more, it can be recycled back into limestone when it’s no longer needed as a surface covering. Calcium carbonate is also extremely durable, and it can last for years.


4. Fire & Pest Resistant

Venetian plaster is also fire- and pest-resistant. Remember the city of Pompeii, Italy that was destroyed by a volcano (Mt. Vesuvius) in ancient times? The homes covered in hot ash and molten lava were partially destroyed. However, archeologists have uncovered walls and other surfaces covered with Venetian plaster. These surfaces look as if they were freshly made because they’re fire-resistant.

In addition, Venetian plaster is also resistant to pests. The lime is not digestible by insects or other pests, making this a great wall treatment to keep pests out of homes and commercial buildings.


5. Easy Maintenance

Many people believe Venetian plaster is so beautiful that it must be hard to maintain. But just the opposite is true. Venetian plaster doesn’t require too much maintenance. The smooth finish dries quickly, and it’s easy to clean.

When it comes to maintaining the surface, all that’s needed is an application of beeswax or another recommended wax. That’s it!


6. Regulates Humidity

Venetian plaster is not only stunning, but it’s also resistant to moisture, and it controls humidity. These qualities make it possible to use the plaster in wet areas, such as the bathroom.

Another added benefit of Venetian plaster is that it can also keep your home cooler.


Common Questions About Venetian Plaster

Here are some of the most commonly asked questions we receive about Venetian plaster.


Can You Customise a Plaster Finish for my Home?

Yes, because Venetian plaster is an artistic material that can be used to create a distinctive finish for your décor. As noted earlier, it’s possible to add natural or synthetic colourants to the plaster and create different finishes with this plaster, so your room(s) will have a unique appearance.

It’s also possible to use stencils to add a customised look to your home.


Is Venetian Plaster Appropriate for a DIY Project?

Yes, but you may not achieve the same stunning appearance as a professional plasterer. A professional is more like an artist, and they have the knowledge and expertise needed to create beautiful finishes and designs with Venetian plaster. These plasters have spent years in their trade.

What’s more, a DIY project usually looks like it was done by a non-professional. It’s possible to have a patchy, uneven surface if the plaster is not applied correctly.

So, yes, it’s possible to DIY Venetian plaster, but we recommend using a professional plasterer who is experienced with the material.


Does Venetian Plaster Need to Be Sealed?

Yes, because Venetian plaster is porous, it’s essential to seal it correctly. Otherwise, the plaster can be more easily damaged and will be as durable. Venetian plaster can be sealed with a natural material, such as beeswax, to ensure durability and long-lasting beauty.


Summing It Up

Venetian plaster is an excellent plaster to use in residential and commercial applications. The plaster creates a beautiful, durable surface that requires minimal care, and it can last for centuries.

If you’re looking for a bespoke wall or ceiling treatment, Venetian plaster may be the right choice for you.

Frequently Asked Questions

How is Venetian plaster different from regular paint?

Venetian plaster is not paint; it’s a decorative finish created by layering plaster and polishing it to achieve a smooth, marble-like appearance.

Can I apply Venetian plaster myself?

While DIY kits are available, achieving a professional finish can be challenging. It’s advisable to hire an experienced artisan for the best results.

Is Venetian plaster suitable for outdoor use?

Venetian plaster is primarily intended for indoor use. It may not withstand the elements if used outdoors.

Can Venetian plaster be used in humid environments?

Yes, Venetian plaster is suitable for humid areas such as bathrooms, as it is breathable and helps prevent moisture-related issues.

How do I choose the right color for Venetian plaster?

Select a color that complements your decor and lighting. Many shades are available, so you can find the perfect match.

Is Venetian plaster expensive?

While the initial cost may be higher than paint, the durability and timeless beauty make it a cost-effective choice in the long term.

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