Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Paint+Glue+Paint= Crackle Finish

Yep, it's true. You can get that coveted look of aged wood and peeling paint without investing in the sometimes expensive specialty products. Plus, you probably already have these 'ingredients', so no special trip to the hardware store needed! Note: You can try this on any surface. 

My first victim: an old wooden oak stool alone in a dark dungeon of a room. Time to bring him into the light.The Before:

and After:

How I did it:

Starting tidbits: Try to turn object so the surface you're painting is flat. Use a thick paint (I used acrylic paint). Watercolors will not work. For most noticeable results, choose two contrasting colors.

(1) Drop generous globs of paint (I used black acrylic paint) onto the surface. Paint to cover surface. Allow to dry.

(2) Use a brush to apply a thick layer of Elmers Glue All on top of the paint.

(3) While glue is still wet, use a brush to quickly cover with a fairly thick layer of your second color of paint (I used a light blue). Be sure NOT to overbrush any areas. Get enough paint on your brush, so you don't need to cover it twice. If you paint over any areas more than once, the crackle process won't work. (I made this mistake in some areas.)

(4) Allow to dry thoroughly, then apply Mod Podge Hard Coat Finish for Furniture with a sponge brush  to seal.

The Review: Very fun but definitely takes some time and can be challenging with a little one around. :) (Be sure to wear old clothes. I need to squeeze in any free time I have to do any kind of project, and I don't want to be in my scrubs all day. So, I added some unwanted black to my favorite jeans.) This will take some practice though. I overbrushed on a couple of areas, so they didn't crackle. I also didn't apply a thick enough layer of glue on this. Will be sure to do so next time. I'm going to try using a hair dryer to speed up drying time and deepen the crack finish.

Click on this link to the Elmers Glue website for instructions for this technique.

I hope this inspires you to find an old piece of furniture, plant pot, canvas, picture frame (of any surface-plastic, wood, etc.), ceramic, etc... and give it a shot! Would love to see your finished projects. Please email pictures!

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