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Venetian Plaster

Venetian plaster is a popular art-form for interior décor finishes across Canada. The material has seen a comeback in the past few years. Homeowners and commercial establishments across Canada increasingly prefer Venetian plaster finishes for their versatility and stand-out looks.

Here at Drywall Repairman, we offer comprehensive Venetian plaster services in Vancouver BC and surrounding areas. We work on the interior and exterior surfaces of homes, restaurants, cafes and other commercial establishments. Our highly skilled craftsmen offer high-end Venetian plaster finishes to match virtually any interior or exterior surface. When applying exterior lime plaster, we offer a full range of customisable colours and finishes.

If you want to combine a modern and classic aesthetic in the décor of any interior or exterior surfaces, let us know. We will provide you a no-obligation quote on using various types of Venetian plaster for your residential or commercial spaces.

To give you an in-depth view of Venetian plaster, we have brought together a brief guide on the subject. In this guide, you will find details about what Venetian plaster is, what are its many applications as well as pros and cons of using Venetian plaster.


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What is Venetian Plaster?

Venetian plaster is also popularly known as lime plaster, Italian plaster and polished plaster.

It is made by mixing fired limestone with water.

The putty is then applied to the walls or ceilings. When exposed to air, a chemical reaction takes place.

The water in the mixture dries and it once again becomes limestone.

Venetian plaster is known for its smooth, almost glossy finish.

The outlook is soft and an almost glowing texture which adds class and elegance to virtually any surface.

It also creates an illusion of depth and subtle movement.

For this reason, Venetian plaster is often used as an aesthetically preferable finish for walls and ceilings.

You can choose from virtually endless textures and colours when it comes to Venetian plaster.

Both synthetic and natural colours are used to tint Venetian plaster.

This means that you can choose a shade that exactly matches or perfectly complements other elements of your interior space.

Venetian plaster is typically available in different varieties.

Unlike the classic variety used back in the 90s, the more modern varieties of lime plaster come with greater options and are more affordable.

This is precisely why there is an uptick in the use of lime plaster among homeowners and businesses across Vancouver.

Types of Venetian Plaster

Venetian plaster is available in a number of varieties including stucco, sgraffito and marmarino. These types differ on the basis of their composition as well as on the basic of the techniques used to apply them. Many other sub-varieties also exist but we will focus on these broad varieties at present.

Stucco Venetian Plaster: Stucco Venetian plaster is also known as stucco veneziano. This particular variety of lime plaster contains little to no sand. It is highly versatile so that it can be applied in finishes ranging from complete matte to mirror-like sheen. Stucco veneziano texture is suitable for both interior and exterior applications. It is incredibly durable and often comes with some flex which ensures that it does not crack with changing weather conditions.

Marmarino Plaster: Marmarino is a special type of Venetian plaster that has been in used for thousands of years. Ancient Romans used this type to achieve glossy and sensual finishes in the interiors of their villas and other structures. Marmarino is created using lime from the river rock in Italy. Like Stucco Veneziano, Marmarino can also be finished in matte, coarse, semi-matte or highly polished finishes. Marmarino also refers to a technique of applying Venetian plaster.

Sgraffito: Sgraffito is a unique technique used in the application of Venetian plaster. In this technique, a specific variety of lime plaster is applied to any surface. Once the layer is dry, it is scraped off at places to reveal a different layer underneath. This creates a contrasting effect that is very artistic.

You may find Venetian plaster with other names and brands as well, and it can get confusing.

To get the lowdown on exactly what Venetian plaster options you have in the Vancouver area, get in touch with us. Here at Drywall Repairman, we offer all the main varieties of Venetian plaster along with extensive finish options. Whether you are looking to have the material applied on a ceiling, interior walls or the exterior surfaces, we have got you covered.

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Why is it Becoming Popular in Vancouver?

There are many reasons why Venetian plaster is once again becoming a popular choice for homeowners and businesses across Vancouver. It is the perfect material to use on columns, curved walls, fireplaces as well as conventional surfaces such as regular walls and ceilings. Here are some of the key reasons why Venetian plaster is gaining in popularity:

  • Aesthetics: Venetian plaster can be finished in earthy, matte or mirror-like sheen. All three offer an extraordinary outlook with greater depth and a shifting luminosity. Lime plaster essentially looks and feels like marble, but it is more versatile. This flexibility allows for more options and the ability to achieve exceptional aesthetics when using Venetian plaster.

  • Convenience: Using marble can be a costly affair, especially when you want to use it on large surfaces. At the same time, it can be a difficult and time-consuming task when marble has to be applied on unusual places, such as curved walls and columns. This is where polished plaster offers the perfect replacement. Not only can you achieve a marble-like finish when using Venetian plaster, it also costs less in comparison.

  • Classic Style: Interior craftsmen get asked this question often: is Venetian plaster out of style? The answer is the opposite. Lime plaster has been used in Roman villas, Moroccan and Turkish baths, and in other grand structures throughout human history. It is a timelessly classic material. When applied in earthy tones, it brings a soft and illuminating aura to any surface. At the same time, it adds depths and sensuality to the surface. For these reasons, it is becoming a popular material in contemporary homes and commercial buildings.

Drywall Repairman specializes in applying Venetian plaster to virtually any surface. We work with both residential and commercial buildings in the Vancouver region, and achieve plaster finishes customised to your requirements.

Flexibility and Available Choices

Venetian plaster is incredibly versatile. It is usually tinted by using both organic and synthetic materials to achieve different colours. So you have essentially endless colour choices when it comes to this particular variety of plaster.

Marble dust and sand are common ingredients used in creating different textures and effects in Venetian plaster. Ultimately, the amount of these ingredients depends on the final effect and colour to be achieved.

More importantly, you can choose from different types of finishes when using Venetian plaster. Following are some of the popular finish options:

Earthy: Earth tones in Venetian plaster typically include brown, gray, white and beige. When achieving an earthy finish, the Venetian plaster is applied in thin layers. As a result, the finish has a soft and illuminating feel to it. Earthy finish is also a throwback to the historical use of lime plaster and it brings a touch of the classic to any surface.

Matte: When applied with a matte finish, Venetian plaster has a stone-like finish. It is perfect to bring a touch of rocks to the walls. Matte finishes are popularly used in larger commercial spaces to achieve a grand and dramatic effect. It is also a good choice to apply to your home’s exterior.

Glossy: One of the most popular Venetian plasters finishes is the glossy finish. This finish has a mirror-like sheen and is able to reflect light quite well. When burnished to a glossy finish, Venetian plaster is able to mimic the look and feel of marble very well.

Venetian plaster is typically used in bathrooms and homes for its unique properties. However, the wide range of colours and finishing options makes it equally suitable for use on ceilings as well as other surfaces on the interior and exterior of your home.

To see which colours and finish options best match the style and décor of your home, contact us today. Drywall Repairman will provide you the most suitable options along with a no-obligation quote.

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Venetian Plaster Applications

Venetian plaster can be applied on a wide variety of surfaces.

This is simply because the material is incredibly durable, able to withstand dampness quite well, and is very flexible.

One of the most common applications of Venetian plaster is as a replacement for marble.

Using marble on curved walls, columns and other larger surfaces is not always a convenient or affordable solution.

This is particularly true if you want to cover large columns, ceilings or walls in a commercial establishment, such as a restaurant.

This is where Venetian plaster is the perfect alternative. Using polished plaster, you are able to achieve the exact same look and feel as real marble, but at the fraction of the cost.

It also requires less time and energy as Venetian plaster is more versatile and can be applied to a surface with greater flexibility.

Homeowners frequently prefer Venetian plaster for use in bathrooms and kitchens.

Since it can withstand dampness and exposure to water quite well, it is a very durable solution for these spaces.

Venetian plaster bathroom finishes also stay clean and give the space a neat feel.

However, it is not suitable for use in places where water is likely to pool for longer periods.

Venetian plaster is also used on floors in place of marble. When applied to a floor, lime plaster is burnished to a glossy finish.

How to make Venetian plaster?

Venetian plaster is quite costly when compared to many other finishing materials. For many Venetian plaster applications, you should be prepared to pay $100 to $200 per square metre, including the cost of both the materials and installation.

In contrast, you can create Venetian plaster at home using ready-made ingredients from a local store. The costs are around $50 per square metre for the materials. Following are some easy steps for making Venetian plaster:

1. Get a container in which to mix the plaster ingredients. A plastic bucket with a capacity of around 10 to 20 litres works great.

2. Add around 2 litres of lime putty to the bucket. You can get lime putty from a local business that stocks builder materials.

3. Add an equal weight of marble dust to the bucket. Marble dust is commonly available at paint stores. Use an instrument, such as a wooden stick, to stir the two materials together until they are perfectly mixed.

4. Melt olive oil soap. This soap can be purchased from a local health or organic store. Once the soap is melted, pour it into the mixture. Make sure you don’t add more than 2 tablespoons to the bucket.

5. Now get around 1.5 standard cups of linseed oil. Stir the mixture as you pour the oil into the bucket.

6. Add a colour of your choice to the mixture. This is particularly achieved by adding a lime-proof pigment. You can choose from natural or synthetic pigments, depending on your choice.

Your home-made Venetian plaster is ready for use. Make sure that you use the plaster soon after it is mixed. Ideally, lime plaster must be applied to the target surface within an hour of being formulated. Any later and it will begin to stiffen. You can temper it once with water to maintain consistency but using water more than once will deteriorate the mixture and render it unusable.

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How to tint Venetian plaster?

Venetian plaster can be tinted using both natural and synthetic materials. Natural materials are slightly harder to come by and cost more. Synthetic tints are more readily available and are typically offered by the companies that manufacture plaster.

If you intend to tint the plaster, make sure you have calculated the right amount of the tint. Different tints work differently. You need to add only small amounts of some tints to achieve the desired colour in the final plaster look. In other cases, you need to add substantial amounts, around 1/4th of the total volume of the plaster mixture.

If you are unsure about the exact amount, take a sample portion of the Venetian plaster and add a measured amount of the tint to it. Then mix the tint well into the plaster mixture and apply it to a surface. If the surface has the desired look, that’s great. If not, increase or decrease the amount of the tint depending on whether you want the final colour to be lighter or deeper.

Pros and Cons of Venetian Plaster

Venetian plaster has rapidly gained in popularity over the past few years. Its stand-out features are that it offers an exceptional aesthetic finish that is not offered by most other finishing materials. That being said, Venetian plaster has its set of pros and cons which are explained below:

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Benefits of Venetian Plaster


Venetian plaster is incredibly versatile. As discussed above, it is available in a rich range of colours and finishes. You can have it tinted to virtually any shade thanks to organic and synthetic tints available in the market. You can also choose between matte, satin, mirror-like sheen and earthy finishes. Sand particles and marble dust are also used to accentuate the looks of the Venetian plaster. Depending on the aesthetics of your interior or exterior surfaces, you can get a variety of lime plaster that perfectly complements these surfaces.

Another excellent feature of Venetian plaster is that it can be applied to virtually any surface. You can also apply lime plaster over drywall, tiled surfaces, bricks and wood surfaces. Venetian plaster finishes are known for their strength and durability. So if you are looking to renovate a surface, you can apply Venetian plaster on top of the previous finishing material instead of removing the previous layer.


Venetian plaster, or polished plaster, copes excellently with damp conditions. It is naturally porous so it is highly resistant to humidity and moisture. This is precisely why homeowners across Vancouver prefer to use Venetian plaster in bathrooms and kitchens.


Venetian plaster can last many lifetimes when applied well. It becomes rock hard once it dries. Even better, it is fade-resistant so you don’t have to worry about losing its sheen or looks over time. For its exceptional durability, Venetian plaster is often used as a finishing material for both interior and exterior surfaces. Unlike cement or concrete which can experience shrinkage and cracking due to weather conditions, Venetian plaster has some flex despite its durability. This prevents the material from cracking due to weather conditions or under a heavy impact.

Zero Maintenance

Since Venetian plaster is fully resistant to moisture, it experiences zero mildew or mould. So you don’t have to worry about maintenance. In fact, when not exposed to any severe conditions, Venetian plaster demands zero maintenance over its lifetime. Even when exposed to wear and tear, it is only the outermost layer which may require some touch up after a long time.

You can occasionally apply a wax coating on top of a Venetian plaster finish to maintain its fresh looks. You can also use a rag soaked in soap-water to clean the plaster’s surface.


In most cases, Venetian plaster is made from entirely natural ingredients. These ingredients are completely free from any toxics and will not release any fumes or dust into the air. This makes lime plaster a perfectly environment-friendly choice for homeowners.

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Downside of Venetian Plaster

Requires Professional Help

You can apply many finishing materials on your own. But when it comes to Venetian plaster, you will very likely need the help of a professional. This is because Venetian plaster is applied with a trowel and must be applied in multiple layers. It also dries up very quickly once the mixture is created, so it must be applied within a very brief time.

For these reasons, you will need a professional to have Venetian plaster applied to interior or exterior surfaces. Here at Drywall Repairman, we specialize in applying lime plaster to all surfaces. Our skilled craftsmen have many years of experience and achieve that iconic aesthetic finish for which Venetian plaster is known.

If you live in Vancouver and want Venetian plaster services, give us a call and we will be with you in no time.


Venetian plaster costs more than many other finishing materials. One of the main reasons for the higher costs is the sheer effort that goes into applying the material. Skilled craftsmen have to apply layer after layer of the material using a trowel, and then make sure the finish is even and perfectly smooth.

Although the cost for a Venetian plaster is a notable downside, the final look of the plaster is definitely worth the cost.

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Venetian Plaster vs Drywall

Plaster and drywall are two popular finishing choices among Vancouver homeowners. Both have their pros and cons. In general, Venetian plaster is the more durable of the two. It is harder and stronger, and consequently more long-lasting. Polished plaster also creates a more aesthetic finish with depth. And although drywall can be matched to any colour or texture, the finishing is not as high-end as that of Venetian plaster.

Plaster is also more resistant to water and moisture. Consequently, you don’t have to worry about mildew or mould. This isn’t the case with drywall which can sustain significant damage when exposed to moisture or water.

That being said, drywall is easier to apply and costs less. Finding drywall installers is also easier than getting a genuine plaster craftsman.

Here at Drywall Repairman, we make the job easier for you. Our in-house Venetian plaster craftsmen offer high-end services to achieve the perfect plaster finish for your home.

Venetian Plaster vs Gypsum Plaster

Gypsum plaster is another popular variety of plaster. Compared to Venetian plaster, gypsum plaster has a more matte and singular finish, which means that it is less customisable. In contrast, Venetian plaster is a lot more versatile. It is also more durable than gypsum plaster and can be finished to matte, satin, glossy or earthy finishes. Venetian plaster also has more flex which makes it less prone to cracking due to impacts or weather changes.

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