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Monday 12 January 2015

Destination Inspiration- faux rust

Good morning one and all it's Brenda here, I hope you are up for some serious metal work today. I've had it in my mind for ages to do this particular Destination Inspiration post because I love corroded metals and their wonderful colours. I also like to create faux metal effects, but I have a very limited number of techniques that can be used without spending lots of money on specialist supplies. So I thought I would experiment with distress products and ranger products to see what I could come up with. During my experiments I researched quite a bit about rusting and patinas and ended up focusing totally on using the products on my shelves to achieve different rusting effects. I hope you like the selection.

Rusted wooden shapes

Using distress paints and alcohol inks
Dab vintage photo distress paint onto shape and heat dry (if you get the gun close enough it will create texture bubbles which look cool for this effect).

In layers, drying between, dab on random splodges of aged mahogany, walnut stain and spiced marmalade DPs.

Using an embossing ink pen add splatters of distress powders in rusty colours I used spiced marmalade, fired brick, vintage photo and walnut stain.

Drip over a little butterscotch, honeycomb, teakwood and sunset orange (or any other rusty colours you have) alcohol inks.

These turned out a bit too shiny for me so after a quick chat with CG Jenny who has shown us metallic techniques herself I sponged over a little matt medium and dabbed over the anti static bag after it had almost dried which has given it a more muted look.

I suppose you could call this next one an out-take photo as this is the underside of the circular wooden shape above and I really like the effects of that too.

Using distress paints and cinnamon
Dab over with spiced marmalade, vintage photo and black soot distress paints. Whilst wet sprinkle over some cinnamon. (Yes ground cinnamon from the spice rack).

With a paint brush stipple the colours and cinnamon together

and finish off by dipping the cog in the left over cinnamon.

Leave to dry and if you're anything like me you will help it along with your heat gun - oh boy the workroom did smell nice.

When cool I rubbed off some of the excess powder and I think I will buy a spray matte varnish to seal it.

Using re-inkers and sprays (or stains).
Use gesso with wild honey, barn door, vintage photo and walnut stain re-inkers. With a palette knife 'splodge' colours over the shape and heat dry.

Repeat the process again to get more texture layered  again heat drying and getting some of those texture bubbles.

To finish spray spiced marmalade, vintage photo and walnut stain in separate layers drying between each until desired effect is achieved.

Using distress embossing powders.
Stain the cog with vintage photo, spiced marmalade, barn door and walnut stain sprays or stains – dry.

Add layers of vintage photo, mustard seed, spiced marmalade, fired brick, aged mahogany and walnut stain distress powders and bake them in together really well.

Add more if needed until you are happy with the effects.

Using distress paints, sprays and sand
Paint the cog with any brown, red and orange distress paints you have - I used walnut stain, aged mahogany and spiced marmalade (I now want to try with other colours in those hues).
Paint the colours on thickly and then dip the shape into ordinary fine sand and heat dry.

When cool rub off excess sand and you are left with some great texture.
Spray with vintage photo, spiced marmalade and barn door sprays. and heat dry.

With your craft knife cut a few bits of the surface away and paint the gaps with the leftover spray inks.

Now I have a whole collection to use in projects. Can you see there is a rogue cog here.

 Yes this one ......

It was one of my practice ones that came out too shiny and I added watery gesso to it and although it didn't get me the look I wanted I do like it for it's shabby appeal.

So now I have a nice little collection to use in future projects and it just goes to show you can experiment with any supplies you have in the craft room to see what works for you. I have used Tim Holtz products here, but there are lots more paints on my shelves that I can experiment with. What about you?

Have fun.

hugs Brenda xxx


  1. I'm printing this whole post even as we speak! I love the rusted look and have never had the time to just sit down and play with different techniques - now I have a complete tutorial for it AND all of the supplies I need (well, I may have to substitute some colors!) Thanks so much for this wonderful post Brenda!

  2. Oh wow - what great Inspiration!!!! It's looks so real! I must try them all - thanks for the tutorial. Hugs, Dagmar

  3. Fantastic tutorial Brenda! Love all the rusty pieces!

  4. Fab tutorial Brenda and super results on all of them! Love the cinnamon idea one, lol, perfect for Christmas projects with that smell :o)
    The shabby "rogue" one looks really cool too. Now I can't wait to see what you will do with them!

  5. A comprehensive play with those varied (and sometimes surprising!) media that help us all to take the guess work out of rusting. Love the idea of using cinnamon and now wondering what else could be used in my spice rack! Glad to see the matte medium had the right effect and I agree, the back side looked fabulous too. All in all a wonderful tutorial Brenda which clearly took some time to put together. Thank you for sharing. Jenny x

  6. Some fabulous pieces there, thanks for sharing the experiment too - cinnamon - mmmm


  7. Wonderful informative post Brenda. My favourite result is the cinnamon one and I love the idea of my craft room having this aroma. TFS Julie xx

  8. I'm with Julia...gonna print this whole darned post!! There's not a single idea here that I'm not going to try!! What an amazing post full of techniques! Thank you so much for all the hard work that went into this one! LOVE THE CINNAMON IDEA!! hugs :)

  9. What an awesome tutorial! Thanks for sharing. I too have experimented with faux rust and have had great results with pumice gel medium and acrylic paints, and distress embossing powder in black and vintage photo (the only ones I own!). I have made some great gearwheels cutting them large from shrink plastic and adding embossing powders before shrinking. Also, I have made silicone moulds from real gearwheels, bolt heads, screws etc. and cast them with friendly plastic (you can't heat emboss this or it melts) and added pumice gel medium and acrylic paints. I'm a bit of a rust junkie and your post certainly got my creative juices flowing!!

    It's amazing what effects one can create just with stuff already in one's studio, without having to buy expensive faux rusting products. Playing and experimenting is the thing, and who cares if there are a few rejects along the way? Anyway, in mixed media, there are no mistakes - only more layers lol!

    Thanks again for a brilliant post.


  10. This is a fabulous tutorial Brenda, full of wonderful ideas to experiment with! I love the thought of using the cinnamon - if only to make my craft room smell nice! I will definitely be trying out these techniques - thanks so much. Hugs, Anne xx

  11. I have never tried any rusting - you have explained this so well it's given me the confidence to have a try, Thanks, Chrisx

  12. Fabulous tutorial Brenda. I love that you've used whatever you had to hand. Such clear steps makes it easy for anyone to have a go - including me!!

  13. Fantastic tutorial and the step by steps just make me want to try some of them soon.
    Yvonne x

  14. What a great compendium of faux rust techniques! Thank you for your time experimenting and sharing - will definitely be trying these! Very fond of your outlier as well :-)

  15. Oh dear.. What a lot of fun creative ways to create faux rust. Lovely results ! So nice to know that you can actually use that many kind of products.
    Thanks a lot for sharing these ideas. Food for a creative soul.
    Hugs from Monica..... Spain

  16. Brenda, Thank you SO MUCH for this much needed tutorial, and for all the great photos! You created some great pieces to use here! My favorite one to use has always been with the Distress powders, but I love the colors you've used! Makes it look so darn real! But all those other techniques are ones I must give a try! Especially cinnamon! My family will think I've been baking! NOT!

  17. A great tutorial and some great ideas I might just have to try. When I first looked I thought the white one was rusted white painted cast iron like you get in old greenhouses!!

  18. Thanks Brenda, good tutorial and love how you should options for the about the same effect.

  19. Love these metallic effects, the cinnamon one is fab and must smell amazing
    All great, and love the rogue one

    Thank you for an inspirational tutorial

    Jools x

  20. Great DI Brenda - you have made it very clear on how to do the techniques and each looks great. Thank you for sharing.
    Hugs, Sandy xx

  21. Fabulous tutorial Brenda, your rusted cogs are just gorgeous and so realistic. I fancy trying the cinnamon one, if only for the smell.! I'm sure you' ll be putting these fab cogs to great use! X

  22. A fabulous tutorial... Huge thanks to you Brenda!!! Coco xx

  23. Omg, this is exactly what I needed right now. Last night, I started to work on a small piece to rust it but I didn't get far since I wasn't sure how to go about it completely. Now I see this amazing techniques, thank you, thank you, thank you! I can't wait to try these out....