This christmas for a family home DIY project we've used plasterboard. Not being DIY savvy, thought it would be a nice and easy to material to work with, and it was!

Now we would like to decorate our little creation, however, both inside and out (ie, both sides of the plasterboard).

Here are the things we've been wondering:

  • Is it possible to go and just paint faces of the plasterboard (tapered edge type)?
  • If indeed possible, what kind of paint shall we use?
  • If we can't just paint it, what kind of "treatment" can we apply to make it possible to paint? (please explain for each side of the plasterboard)
  • If one side is paintable but the other isn't (without treating), what can be done to decorate the other side?

Yes, you can paint plasterboard directly - it's usually just paper on the outside. (Moisture resisting plasterboard tends to have a foil on on side though, which probably won't take paint well).

What paint you use will depend what finish (or colours) you want, but you're unlikely to have problems using either emulsion or undercoat and gloss (or matt or eggshell) topcoat.

Here's some information about plasterboard.

  • Thanks John! Can I just ask though, the plasterboard we've used is covered with different materials on its side. One is more paper-like, whereas the other side is bit more smooth and white. Will both sides take the paint without issues? Cheers! – Phil Jan 1 '15 at 14:00
  • 1
    It should be fine on both sides for paint. If you were plastering it, you'd use the white face (see point 8 on the link I've added). For paint, I'd hazard a guess that the brown side might be a little more absorbent, so you might need an extra coat of paint on that side - which will help smooth some of the texture out too. – John Jan 2 '15 at 9:03

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