One method of applying texture to the surfaces of walls and ceilings makes them look similar to exterior stucco. It is generically referred to as "knockdown" texture, which is descriptive of its application method. It is also referred to as Spanish lace or French lace because the texture takes on the look of a lacy fabric. This method covers up imperfections and is good to use on walls and ceilings that are badly cracked.
Tape and cover with plastic all adjoining surfaces that are not to be covered with Spanish lace knockdown texture finish.
Mix the texture compound with water, following the manufacturer's instructions. The compound should have the consistency of thick pancake batter. Mix in a 5-gallon bucket using a mixing attachment for an electric drill.
Fill the hopper of the texture sprayer with the mixture.
Use a 3/8-inch nozzle on the texture sprayer and 60 lbs. of pressure on the accompanying compressor.
Hold the nozzle about 4 to 5 feet away from the ceiling. Aim the nozzle of the texture spray at the ceiling and pull the trigger in short spurts so that the compound forms globs on the surface of the ceiling. It will look like someone flicked small handfuls of the compound on the ceiling. This is normal. Work on a 6- to 10-foot vertical section of the ceiling from wall to wall, completing the process before moving on to the next section.
Let the globs of the compound sit on the ceiling and set for 15 to 20 minutes. Do not skip this step. The compound should be tacky but not dry.
Use a drywall knife held at an angle nearly parallel to the ceiling. Lightly drag the drywall knife over the globs of compound, knocking down the raised areas. Change direction often, forming random patterns with the texture compound. Don't press hard with the drywall knife or you'll end up with a homogeneous surface. You're looking for irregularities in the surface of the ceiling in the form of hills and valleys, spaced fairly widely apart. It should have a similar appearance to exterior stucco, with the hills and valleys not as high or deep.
Allow the compound to dry on the ceiling for 24 to 48 hours.