As is true of all painted surfaces, starting with a properly prepared surface is essential. With the terrific paint formulations today you can paint any surface and be assured of a long lasting finish, IF you take the time to prepare your surface. Lack of good prep is the major cause of paint failures, there are no shortcuts....
Rule #1--Excluding proper prep, There are no rules!! You must remember that this form of finishing is an art form and you are the artist.
I simply give you the basic tools to work with. Do not be afraid to express yourself, fool around with the techniques and you will develop a finish that is yours alone.
The beauty of these finishing techniques is that they can all be "undone", don't like what you did,simple,block it out and try again.
COLOR.....When using a technique that requires several applications such as ragging or glazing, try to stay within the same color groups. Extreme color changes don't work well. A trick I suggest to beginners is go to your local paint store and look at the various color cards. Paint companies hire the leading designers to compile these grouping of color combinations and you are sure to find the colors that appeal to you. In addition, most decorating centers and paint stores offer all the necessary products to get the job done right. Many also hold faux-finish clinics. Simply stop by and find out what your local retailer has to offer.
I have a few on-line tools to help you with your COLOR selection process.
Experiment....Before applying a finish to the wall, it's wise to experiment. Use sample boards (plywood, heavy cardboard, or foam core) painted with your base coat. Try various colors, tools, and applications.
That out of the way lets move on to the Tools and Materials you will be needing