Knock Down Panda Paw Texture

My friends, C & D, move a lot.  They also like to buy rundown old houses and fix them up.  Then when they move again, they rent them out.

I love their current home.  It is full of old wood trim, wood floors, and super-cool texture on the walls.  (I also like their bullnose trim, but let’s focus on texture today.)

Since my house does NOT have old, high quality character, I copied the texture on the wall.

Here is the technique for Panda-Paw Knock Down Texture.

First tape, mud with Durabond (because we used sticky tape, not the paper kind), sand-and-sand-and-sand (Durabond is very hard), apply a second coat of Sheetrock mud in the green bucket, sand, apply the third coat of green mud, and sand.

By now you are slightly crazy from all the mudding.  And your fingers hurt from the mud sucking out all the moisture in your skin.

Now mix up some “green” mud with some water.  It should be the consistency of toothpaste (the runny stuff that falls off your toothbrush and onto your freshly cleaned countertop).  Label your bucket as “texture mud”.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIt is loose enough to drip off the mudding knife, but sticky enough to hold onto a wall.

Fill a container with the texturing mud.  Grab your clean Panda Paw.  (I kept calling it the Panda Butt.  Maybe you can see why…)

Clean paw

Now dip, ever so gently, the Panda Paw into the texturing mud.

Dip your Panda Paw in the texture mud- just a little bit on the edges.

Dip your Panda Paw in the texture mud- just a little bit on the edges.


Make sure the wall has 3 coats of mud and has been sanded.

Make sure the wall has 3 coats of mud and has been sanded.

Now WHACK the wall!

Now WHACK the wall!

Most of the YouTube videos I’ve seen on Panda Paw-ing, they stop here.  You have one impression of the paw on the wall.

That is not how C&D taught me.  Keep whacking until the coat of mud is even.

Continue to move the mud around, so an even coat remains.

Continue to move the mud around, so an even coat remains.

The texture is quite rough (and wet at this stage).  Now you have to wait for the mud to dry to the perfect consistency.

When the mud is dry to the touch, but still wet enough to dent with your finger, grab a trowel and WHACK the mud for the “knock down”.

This will flatten the mud, so your walls have a smoother texture that will be easier to clean.

I do not have pictures of the knock down, as all the mud seems to dry at once.  I was knocking down like a mad man and only realized when I was done, I forgot pictures.  (The hazards of working by yourself with no camera man.)

If the mud still too wet, your trowel will become smeared.  Too dry and the mud doesn’t smack down at all.

Since we put up new drywall and primed/taped over the old sheetrock with “wallpaper” on it, the two surfaces dry at different rates.  The vinyl wallpaper takes FOREVER for mud to dry. However, the seams where I taped and mudded don’t.

I finally gave up waiting for the texture to dry on the vinyl.  I will sand the rough spots out when the burnout is over.

I am going to wait until the next hot day when the inside of the house is 100 degrees and texture the old vinyl drywall.  Doesn’t that sound like fun?

(Note: Clean your tools and bucket immediately with clean water.  Once the mud dries, it is NO fun to clean off.)


Categories: Home Remodel | 1 Comment

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One thought on “Knock Down Panda Paw Texture

  1. Martha Wiseman

    I wish I could see a photo of it after it is dried….it sounds lovely.

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