Interior design

Big Trends Small Spaces: how to upcycle furniture with painted faux terrazzo

In Big Trends Small Spaces we’ll be recreating the most popular interior design trends on Instagram in rented homes and compact properties. This week, Richard O’Gorman of Instagram account House Homo shows how to paint a terrazzo pattern onto furniture that’s in need of a refresh. 

Experimenting with paint colours is one of the biggest interiors trends right now. But, while revamping walls with colour blocking, accent corners and scallop borders is fun, it’s possible to get handy with a paint brush and make an impact without changing an entire room.

Richard O’Gorman has won the adoration of over 38,000 followers with his Instagram account House Homo, which showcases his flair for colour and imaginative interiors. From painting a plethora of bright shapes and arches on his walls, to opting for 60s-inspired wallpaper, and an abundance of eye-catching furnishings to match, Richard’s signature style is like a rainbow of maximalism.

Richard’s Instagram shows off his two-bed Victorian terrace in Birmingham, which he’s been renovating for just over a year, offering lots of inspiration for anyone looking to create a similar aesthetic. Richard also recently started his own interior stylist business so you can also enquire about working with him on making your home fabulous, too.

For this week’s Big Trends Small Spaces, Richard is talking us through his technique for painting faux terrazzo and upcyling small side tables, which is a project he took on to help some friends.


“My best friends Jordan and Ben have just opened their own hair salon in Birmingham called Massarella + Jones and they enlisted me to design the space. I wanted tables for their clients to put their coffee (or champagne!) on whilst they have their ‘hurrr’ done and so I sourced the Zuiver Floss side table from Cuckooland,” explains Richard. 

“I loved them but wanted to elevate them and add a graphic element. So I hatched a plan to paint the top section a sharp black and breathe some joy and fun onto the bases with colourful terrazzo. 

He continues: “The salon is inspired by retro futurism so giving them a terrazzo makeover added another retro 80s element and gave the whole space some additional texture.”

How to paint your own faux terrazzo side tables

  • 1. Paint the top section and prepare terrazzo

    “I spray painted the top of each side table with Rustoleum black Matt spray paint. Whilst that was drying, I chose three colours for the terrazzo. You can choose as many as you like but I chose three from the colours we’d already used in the salon – pink, green and orange. 

    “I love pink and green together and introducing a hint of orange created a playful feel.”

  • 2. Paint on terrazzo shapes

    “I initially tried this step using masking tape to create shapes, and then slapping paint on top, trusting that the masking tape would protect the sharp edges. Unfortunately as I pulled the tape away it removed some of the paint, or effect the painted shapes around it. 

    “Instead, I would recommend painting the shapes on freehand and Googling some examples of terrazzo beforehand to get an idea of how you want it to look. 

    “Generally, though, you’re aiming for scalene triangles, squashed squares and rectangles. Mixed in with some organic shapes, too.

    “Start with one colour and then work your way around the table. Leave lots of space in between the shapes and you can fill them back in with the next colours (or circle back with the first colour!)

    “I would advise playing with size and placement; do some big thin triangles and tiny pentagons, bring some really close together and leave some big gaps of white. The less ordered it seems, the more successful it will be!”

  • 3. Add more layers of terrazzo shapes

    “Once that’s dry, move onto your second colour and then again onto your third (or fourth or fifth). Keep going until you’re happy.

    “Top tip: try slightly overlapping shapes in places to create an authentic terrazzo moment.”

  • 4. Finish with a protective spray

    “Once everything is dry, spray a couple of layers of matte lacquer to protect your art. And that’s it; your tables are complete.”

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Images: courtesy of  Richard O’Gorman/House Homo


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