DecoArt Weathered Wood Crackle Medium is one of the easiest crackle finishes to use! Today I'm going to show you just how easy it is to create a project that looks 100 years old...
To use the DecoArt Weathered Wood Crackle Finish you need 2 colours of DecoArt Americana Paints. You can use 2 colours that are at the opposite end of the tonal scale - like I have here Yellow Ochre being light and Black being the darkest tone possible. Another option is to use two similar colours, each option will create a completely different effect.
The Weathered Wood Crackle Medium is called a 'sandwich' crackle, this is because the medium is sandwiched between 2 different colours of paints. How you apply the top coat determines how the crackle will look - if you apply the top coat with a brush it will look very different to if you apply it with a sponge.
First start with a base colour. Here I have used Yellow Ochre. You can use any colour you like for the base coat - including the DecoArt Americana Acrylic Metallic Paints - but please note you cannot use the Metallic Paints for the top coat as these do not crack!
Once the base coat is dry apply an even coat of the DecoArt Weathered Wood Crackle Medium. You can apply it with a brush or a sponge, how you apply the crackle doesn't make much difference to how the crackle will look. Allow to dry until you can touch it without your fingers sticking to the surface, this will take around 30 mins.
How you apply the paint on top will alter the way the crackle finish looks. In the tile below, I've applied the top colour (Lamp Black) using a brush.
Can you see that there is a pattern of vertical lines? This is because I have used a brush and applied the top coat with brush strokes going from the top of the square to the bottom, this always creates this effect. If I applied the top coat horizontally then the lines would go across the project. This is not so important when you can turn the project around, but if you are working on a chest of drawers or wardrobe, then it becomes much more important. Something else that will effect how the crackle looks is how 'thick' you apply the paint. Where the cracks are larger is where the paint is thicker - the finer cracks is where the paint is thinner.
In the second tile below, I have applied the top coat of paint with a sponge. Can you see how the cracks are more 'random' there are no straight lines going vertically up and down the square?
One very important tip, whether you are applying the top coat with a sponge or a brush is...
Once you apply the top coat of paint it will 're-activate' the crackle medium and so you must only go over the crackle medium once with the top coat. If you apply the top coat and then go back over with the brush/sponge then you will find that you remove the crackle and the layer of paint that you applied, so the rule of thumb is once you apply the top coat LEAVE IT - DO NOT GO BACK OVER IT!
In the last tile (below) I didn't put the crackle medium all over the square. For some projects you might just want to apply crackle in certain areas - this often creates much more interest to your project. Just apply crackle medium where you want the cracks and apply the top coat as normal.
Next, I added metallic lustre to the edges. If you haven't yet tried DecoArt Inc. Metallic Lustre then be prepared to fall in love! Click on the pictures to see which colours I've used - but beware it's like buying the Glamour Dust - everything in sight will become metallic...
This sample is Lamp Black basecoat and Yellow Ochre top coat. Isn't that the amazing thing about painting - just 2 colours gives you so many options. I've added some DecoArt Metallic Lustre Iced Espresso to the edges to create a nice aged antique effect. DecoArt are well known for their amazing metallic finishes and this one is no exception - it truly looks like the real thing and is so easy to use, but do be warned it is addictive, it adds such an amazing effect to every project you will want to make everything metallic!
Here I've used Yellow Ochre as the basecoat and Lamp Black as the top coat - DecoArt amazing Metallic Lustre in Gold Rush has been applied around the edges. The Metallic Lustre is like a beautiful creamy eyeshadow, you can just apply a little to your finger tip and rub on to your project - or if you don't like to get your fingers dirty, then use a soft cloth or dry stiff brush.
Experiment with painting designs onto the crackle finish...it's a little different to painting on a smooth finish, but not too difficult - use the opportunity to try out different colours.
I was in the mood for something bright and bold. Maybe because my son got married this week and the theme was red roses, I was in the mood for red and I'm sure there will be someone out there who likes this...but it just didn't float my boat.
I didn't learn from my first attempt and repeated it on my second practice - I still didn't like it too much at the time, but actually looking at it now I'm starting to warm to it. I do find from experience that almost all painters are not always happy with their paintings at the time they are painting, but if they walk away for a short time - if only to make a cup of tea, then it looks completely different when they come back. I think that happened with this design..I'm starting to warm to it.
If you try something and do not want to use it for your final project, don't throw it away. Simply add it to your journal with notes of what you would do differently next time.
Always, always play and try out different colours and effects and remember to put them in your journal. My gosh how many different options do we have when we're painting! It's almost mind boggling - but the Folk It! Team can assure you from our experience, playing and experimenting is not only very, very relaxing and theraputic - but you won't appreciate at the time just how much it teaches you, but on hindsight (oh how we are all so much wiser on hindsight) you realise it's the playing and the mistakes where you learn so much! So don't try and get everything right first time, just play, make massive big mistakes and most importantly just enjoy - it's very important.
Final project: I decided to go with pink roses to decorate my journal - as always, don't forget the details.
After all my playing around, I decided to go with pink roses - there is something about pink and the vintage roses, I think the two were just meant to be together.
Actually when I look at all my efforts side by side, they all look pretty good...but my favourite is the pink. What's your favourite? Have you given yourself time to play and find out? I do hope so...
This is the Metallic Lustre close up - it really does look like actual metallic and you will want to add it to everything you paint..imagine how amazing this would make a simple gift tag look. And note the Yellow Ochre under the Lamp Black background - because we've used the Metallic Lustre around the edges, it gives the illusion that the underneath coat is Gold.
Don't forget the details! Here I've added a little Metallic Lustre to the metal buttons. Use DecoArt Paint Adhesion Medium first - then apply the Lamp Black Americana and then the Metallic Lustre.
Here you can see the crackle detail underneath the vintage roses.
HOMEWORK: This week's homework is to play with your paints. Experiment with new products and make time to have fun. Whether you like what you create or not, no project or experiment is ever wasted, you are just preparing for your next project.
Have a lovely week,