Milk Paint Walls

Gorgeous velvety milk paint in a Tavern Green color was applied on the walls of a NYC loft.  A polished beeswax finish was added for water protection. 

Milk paint is gaining a wider usage because it contains only ingredients that are all-natural and will not harm the environment. It can give the look of Colonial America, with many historic-based colors, but is also completely biodegradable, with no VOCS, HAPs or EPA-exempt solvents added.


Up close the walls resemble a fresco, with soft brush strokes, due to the milk paint’s unique properties.

Over time the lime ingredient hardens the surface to an almost stone-like toughness.

According to “The oldest painted surfaces on earth were colored with a form of milk paint. Cave drawings and paintings made 8,000 years ago, even as old as 20,000 years ago, were made with a simple composition of milk, lime, and earth pigments. When King Tutankhamen’s tomb was opened in 1924, artifacts including models of boats, people, and furniture found inside the burial chamber had been painted with milk paint.

In Colonial America, as earlier in Europe, itinerant painters roamed the countryside, carrying pigments with them, which could be mixed with a farmer’s or householder’s own milk and lime”.

Kitchen walls in cream milk paint; ceiling in Marmorino plaster
Shower wall



Other walls in this Upper West Side apartment received a cream colored milk paint; the baseboards were done in Oyster White. 





















Metal elements were used for wall demarcations.

A clever use of dark metal grid cabinets hide thermostats, intercoms, etc.

The remainder of the walls were clad in homasote, a cellulose based fiber wall board, which is similar in composition to papier-mâché. Primarily used as a sound barrier, the boards in this apartment were installed to function also as a decorative element. This creative use of materials was implemented by an award-winning designer.

Published by Yvonne Verwer

Yvonne Verwer at YVStudio LLC has done high-quality decorative and murals and decorative finishes for over 20 years in many of New York's finest homes and businesses. Her work has been shown at The French Designer Show House, and The Hudson River Show House. She has been featured in The New York Times, The New Yorker, Avenue Magazine, and Nickelodeon Magazine.

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