We want to skim coat our walls and repaint to get rid of the Orangle peel uneven texture , when house was made in the 1970s. We only want to do this for the living room, but not the continuous kitchen walls connected to it (which is painted different color anyway).

Will this cause an uneven thickness between the walls its done (from living room to kitchen)? If only repainting, the thickness would not show. However adding drywall joint compound may add thickness to the wall layer.


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  • 3
    Put a trim board over the place where the color (and soon texture) changes.
    – Ecnerwal
    May 22, 2022 at 18:06
  • hi @Ecnerwal are you saying compound will be thick enough in the first place, that a trim board will be required? I prefer not to place a trimboard in the first place
    – mattsmith5
    May 22, 2022 at 19:05
  • 1
    A trim board is never "required" - it's trim, it serves aesthetic functions. In this case, it would make the transition of wall surface finish unremarkable visually, in an easy way. To manage without trim as a visual divider, the work has to be done much more fussily in order to look good. That might take 3 times as long, but if that's the way you want to do it, feel free to choose the hard way.
    – Ecnerwal
    May 22, 2022 at 19:25
  • 1
    Even if the walls are "exactly the same thickness" a transition from orange peel to flat is "going to show" because the two sections of wall look very different. As anyone who's patched an orange peel wall knows too well. I'm not hurting on the points front, someone else can write an answer and might have more input.
    – Ecnerwal
    May 22, 2022 at 19:29
  • 1
    As has been noted, a piece of trim of any sort will make the transition from textured to smooth wall much easier. It will take a lot of time and effort to get the transition to look smooth without it. Of course, it will take a lot of time and effort to get the whole wall smooth in the first place, which is why textured surfaces are usually applied. It takes a lot of skill and practice to get a good, smooth finish that actually is smooth. You may think you've got a smooth finish, but as soon as you put a paint finish on it and look along the wall, you'll notice all the little flaws.
    – FreeMan
    May 23, 2022 at 12:49

1 Answer 1


As @Ecnerwal noted, there's always going to be a noticeable transition between smooth and orange peel (or any other texture).

Trim or a strategic corner would hide the change.

But if you had to try without the above, then sand down the texture adjacent to the transition. (About 18" would give you a good runway; you might be able to get away with a little less if your sanding hand gets tired.) It wouldn't hurt, actually, to lightly sand the entire wall, as that'll take down high spots that'll wreak havoc with your smoothing efforts.

Smooth with mud, keeping in mind that you can take fresh mud off the textured part easily with a slightly damp sponge as you work on it.

Use topping mud for the top couple of coats so you can sand more easily than if you used all purpose or (heaven forefend!) setting compound (which sands extremely poorly). (Around here, topping mud only comes in big boxes and you'll probably cringe at the waste. Don't. Focus on how much easier the sanding will be.)

Top tip, get a variable speed random orbit sander with a dust port you can put a vacuum on. Run the sander on low. Use the right filter in the vacuum to prevent killing it with drywall dust. Your house will still be full of dust, but slightly less so. The next level up would be enclosing the work area entirely in a plastic bubble, which would really help. (But still do the vacuum.) Wear a good n95 or better mask.

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