Stucco has existed in some form for thousands of years. In the 1900s it gained popularity in America as a housing masonry stuff. Craftsmen utilize cement-based stucco to create textured walls and molded designs on homes and buildings today. While stucco is often associated with outdoor usage in modern applications, it may be implemented inside to add texture or cover unappealing wall surfaces. Though the material may be applied directly to most masonry finishes, applying stucco to hardwood walls requires some special preparation to reduce moisture damage and ensure an effective and long-lasting bonding.

Cover wood studs with plywood wall sheathing. Space boards 1/8 inch apart, and fasten them to studs with nails spaced 4 inches on center. Skip this step if the walls already have sheathing.

Install two layers of construction paper over the plywood sheathing. Overlap seams from 6 inches and staple along the seams.

Apply a layer of diamond mesh over the construction paper. Run the mesh vertical to the studs, overlapping borders by 1 inch. Staple every 6 inches using galvanized staples if you’re using self-furring mesh, or nail every 6 inches using furring nails if you’re not using self-furring mesh.

Mix your scratch coat by adding just one part cement to 21/4 to 4 parts sand. Slowly add water till the stucco hangs off the trowel without falling off when you hold the trowel at a 90 degree angle.

Hold your trowel at a 45 degree angle and apply the scratch coat into the wall. Work from the bottom of the wall up, keeping this coat about 3/8 inch thick. When it is almost dry, then use a plasterers rake to scrape 1/8-inch-deep grooves in the stucco. Allow the stucco to dry for 24 to 48 hours, misting with water periodically to encourage slow drying.

Blend 1 part cement with 3 to 5 parts sand to create a brown coat. Add water till the stucco hangs off the trowel when you hold the trowel at a 90 degree angle.

Implement your brown coat by holding your trowel at a 45 degree angle. The brown coat should be 3/8 inch thick. Mist with water periodically as this coat dissolves over a 24- to 48-hour span.

Mix your final coat with 1 part 1 and cement1/2 to 3 parts sand. Add water till your stucco hangs off the trowel. Apply the stucco to create a 1/8-inch-thick top coat. Vary the pressure and angle on your trowel to create the desired texture. Use rags, rolls, brushes or other tools as desirable to create more complex textures and finishes.

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