Making Spackle from Items Available in the Home
If it is only small holes that need filling there are a number of items available in the house which can do the job in a pinch. If the cracks or holes are larger it is better to go in for other compounds like Plaster of Paris which can be easily available in the local hardware shop.
The simplest thing to do is to mix a spoon full of cornstarch and salt and then add enough water to make a paste. This can be used to fill up the hole. The salt in the cornstarch is to prevent it being edible to house insects like ants. Once you have filled the hole or holes, let it dry before you decide to paint it.
Ever heard of toothpaste and spackle?
Another normal household product that can be used to make homemade is toothpaste. This has to be the white kind and not the gel which we are more familiar with nowadays. Spread the toothpaste into the crack or hole, and see that it is filled up completely.
Allow it to dry before you try any further decorating or touching up of the spot. If the hole is really tiny, rub in a bar of white soap and spread it out with the finger. This will work just as well as toothpaste but may not be all right for areas that are always damp.
Other Tips for Homemade Spackle
If you are a DIY enthusiast you are sure to have some primer or white paint around the house. This should be a water-based paint. Now for repairing those cracks and holes with your homemade spackle, you will need a couple of tablespoons of white flour. To this add some salt (1/3 teaspoon for 4 tablespoons of flour) and mix it well with some of the white paint or primer.
The quantity of paint required would be generally about half of the flour quantity, but what you need to make is a dough with the flour, salt, and paint that is about the consistency of putty.
Now use this dough to fill up the holes and cracks, smoothing it out with a trowel or spatula. As always, let the filled up area dry before you attempt any painting. If sanding is to be done, the surface of the filler must be completely hard. If the final paint coat is oil or lacquer based, the salt has to be avoided for the homemade spackle.
If you do have some Plaster of Paris in your house, you can make spackle at home with this and even fill up the slightly bigger cracks and holes. Mix the Plaster of Paris with vinegar and water. Use about ¼ cup of vinegar for every pound of the Plaster of Paris.
The vinegar helps to retard the setting of the mixture and should give you about half an hour to complete your repair job, before the mixture sets and becomes useless. As usual, fill the cracks and holes, spread with a trowel or spatula and let it dry completely before doing any further work on the wall.
You can just buy DryDex Spackle from Amazon and save yourself the hassle.