My home has a ceiling texture that i can't seem to duplicate. Attached is a photo. If someone can please identify and tell me how to duplicate this look I would appreciate it. It makes things more difficult when you want to patch something up and don't know to to match the texture.

enter image description here

  • It looks like two passes..a hard coarse sponge followed by a smooth wet sponge to knock the high points down. Feb 10, 2020 at 18:01

2 Answers 2


Many ceiling textures are created by putting some mud on the ceiling with a perpendicular motion, then swiping sideways with a trowel ("knock down"). I see some parts of your texture that look like this might be what happened.

Other parts of the texture have wide valleys with sharp narrow ridges. Those look to me like they were done very wet or runny. Maybe the mud was applied with a "normal" consistency and then knocked down using a dripping wet brush?

Usually these things are done using some combination of a trowel, an aluminum hawk, and/or a brush of some kind -- in combination with varying the consistency/thickness of the compound.

A full sheet of drywall doesn't cost a lot, especially if you can negotiate for a discount on a damaged piece. It might be worth getting a piece just to experiment on. Throw some mud on and play with it. Wait and see how it looks when dry, or if you're sure it's wrong, scrape the mud off while it's still wet and try again.

  • Actually just about any surface will work , but sheetrock being cheap is a good suggestion.
    – Ed Beal
    Feb 10, 2020 at 18:22

This looks like a sponge wipe , it is difficult to match but with practice can be done. I usually add some water to the mud and mix it well then using a large sponge dip the sponge in the mix and try to maintain a similar arc pattern adding mud to the sponge as needed.

  • Do you know what kind of sponge, its it semi rough, i ask because the streaks/lines that are prominent. Didn't think a sponge could do that.
    – Da P.A
    Feb 10, 2020 at 17:49
  • I think i have identified this as the skip trowel drywall texture method youtube.com/watch?v=EvZHOEW5jzA
    – Da P.A
    Feb 10, 2020 at 18:06
  • To me it looks more like sponge, notice on yours the taper and smother ridges. I use a large natural sponge, the same type as I use with tile. These are usually large blocks 3-4” thick 6” wide and 8” long or there about (there are synthetic “natural” sponges available. I also use skip trowel , heavy spray with knockdown and orange peal all have minor differences that may not be noticed by a diy with limited experience. It could be skip as a knockdown finished with a wet sponge.
    – Ed Beal
    Feb 10, 2020 at 18:20
  • so do you add the compound with the trowel then use the sponge ? can you describe how you would do it. thanks, Paul
    – Da P.A
    Feb 10, 2020 at 22:29
  • When trying to match I usually use a sponge only, (small area a patch) but starting from scratch I do use a trowel to put a skim in then a few high points and wipe with the sponge , the mud is mixed wet as I mentioned and the sponge helps provide smother edges , if you don’t skim the entire area painting will be a problem or even with primer the there will be a difference between the areas that have some mud and bare paper. The skim with a wide trowel is quick and you can do it thin enough to see color through it while wet, when it drys it’s usually chalk white and it drys in a few minutes.
    – Ed Beal
    Feb 10, 2020 at 23:20

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