We see verdigris all over the place. The Statue of Liberty is verdigris, for instance. Many don’t know what verdigris is or how it’s obtained, other than it’s a pretty shade of green or turquoise.
Since I happen to love turquoise and all shades of it, verdigris was the perfect choice for a thrift store planter I have.
There are a lot of specialty paints that mimic the oxidation process, and they’re probably wonderful. I honestly don’t know, being the cheap frugal gal I am.
I just use craft paints and the finish comes close enough. For me.
There are only a few steps and they’re super easy so anyone can do it, if you happen to love turquoise like I do.
1. Basecoat the object with copper, bronze or brass – unless it’s one of those colors already.
Of the two spray paints pictured above, I chose the bronze on the right, mainly because it wasn’t “hammered”. I prefer the copper color but didn’t want the hammered pits on this planter.
2. Brush on a deep turquoise paint after the metallic basecoat has dried thoroughly.
You could use teal, deep green, or any shade in between.
3. Gently wipe off the turquoise from the ‘high’ points with a damp cloth.
You want part of the bronze – or whichever metallic color – to peek through.
I used a damp paper towel. Slightly damp. If you do this right after you paint the turquoise it’ll rub off quite easily without much need for much pressure.
It’ll look a little blotchy at this point and that’s okay. See how a lot of the bronze shows through? You can control how much metallic highlight you want.
4. Paint on a lighter shade of turquoise. Or just mix some white into the deep turquoise.
Again, wipe off a little here and there.
See how only a tiny bit of metallic shows through?
This finish can be done on anything but it really works well on items that have a few raised areas. But I have done it on a smooth clay pot too.
You don’t have to wipe off the entire spot. The pale turquoise that slightly covers some of the ornament adds a bit of authenticity.
5. Apply white paint with an old bristle brush.
You want to work the white down into all of the crevices.
Wipe off some of the white to reveal the bronze.
After four layers of paint and a little wiping you’ll have a very nice patina.
Of course, you can continue adding and subtracting as much as you’d like. You won’t hurt the finish. On the contrary, it’ll add even more depth to the final product.
Now . . . I actually left it this way for a few days. And was quite happy with it too. But then I had a thought . . . I mean, the holidays are coming . . . what could a little more, ummm, oomph hurt.
No she di’ent.
Oh yes I did.
If you want to make your metallic a little more . . . shiny, you can rub on some Rub ‘n Buff. Just a smidge. With your fingertip.
A little goes a long way. Trust me on this.
Then go ahead and seal it with a matte sealer. If you use satin or gloss it’ll defeat the look you’re going for.
Also, matte sealers will bring all the dimension out in a faux finish. No sheen, just a glorious depth of color.
I really love using turquoise with Fall colors. They play well off of each other because they’re on the opposite sides of the color wheel.
Complementary is the word, I believe.
Then you get to decide what to put into your nice new, er, old verdigris planter and where it’ll go.
Not bad. Ties in with the bookcase.
Yes, they’ve been switched back to Fall from Halloween, in case you’re paying attention.
My house is in a constant state of flux, depending on what I’m painting at the moment.
sigh. It’s just heavenly to have a house again to make a mess in, clean it up, then mess it up all over again.
Absolutely the best.
After a day or two on center stage – the game table – the planter found its way up to the bookshelf.
It’s happy up there amongst the rich browns, russets and golden tones.
Supplies used in this tutorial:
- Rustoleum Metallic Rich Caramel
- FolkArt Aqua
- FolkArt Calypso Sky
- FolkArt Wicker White
- Rub ‘n Buff Antique Gold
- Krylon Matte
Have you tried a faux finish? What did you mimic? Would you like to see more faux finishes?