Tinker Around

Welcome to my blog. It is full of basic projects and tutorials for things that I have done and feel like others out there would benefit from learning too. Be sure to take time to leave me a comment. Thanx, Pam

Friday, December 16, 2011

Dry Brushing Technique

Today I would like to just walk you through the process of how I paint on metal and do dry brushing.  There are a few folks I know that just cringe when they know I am going to paint on an old silver plated tray or other item. Then, there are those that do it all the time and wonder why they were not doing it sooner.  So..if you cringe, just hang in there and see the difference that a bit of paint can make and see if you feel the same.  Let me start by saying that I have a source that I go to and if an item really is worth something, I do NOT paint on it.

This is my latest thrift store find, it does have quite a bit of wear and tear damage, but I just loved the lines and the raised design on it.

When I want to paint a metal object...first, give it a good wipe down with a baby wipe and dry it off really well.  Secondly, I take it out to the garage and give it a couple light coats of Rustoleum Primer, two light coats are better than one heavy.  Walk away and let it dry overnight, just seals best when you wait.  Then, I take whatever color I want my item basecoated in and put on a couple thin coats.  In this case, I used Black Plum by Americana for my basecoat color.  While we are on color, I am also using Folk Art Aqua and Americana Titanium White (I could have used any brand for the white).

The next part will be all about the process to get the look that I want for this particular piece.  I get a really stiff brush (this one is Papillion by Artist Club and I got it online from their website) to do my dry brushing.  The brush is stiff, almost like a stenciling brush but with rounded edges, and you do NOT dip it into water before you use it.  I fill my brush with the first color, Aqua, and really work it into the brush.  Then, take it and swirl it into a circular motion on a clean paper towel and get most of the paint off.  Yes, that is what I said, take most of the paint back off.  You have to do it this way to get a nice even coat when dry brushing.   You can always add more paint, you can't take it back off.  Now, I go to the piece and start lightly, very lightly (you can get harder as you run out of color) go in a small circular motion and go over the high parts of the piece.  Now, I went ahead and went over the entire outside of this piece, it just depends on each piece as to how much I do.  As your brush gets really dry and you are not getting any paint off, go back and do the process all over again with the Aqua.

Look at all that gorgeous detail that just pops with the Teal on it!!!  I hope that yo are starting to understand why I paint silver plated stuff that really is not worth much at all.  Now, the next thing I did, was to mix a bit of white to the teal, just to come up a little lighter.  Do the entire process like you did with the Teal.  

Then, I am going to take that mix that I just used and add some white to it, and do the entire process again.  Be sure that you are letting the paint dry between each coat.

Now, I like the results that I have and will find a place for it next to my tray.  

When looking at the piece now, I really don't like the way that the base came out.  I think that I might go back in and dry brush the base with some of the Black Plum.  Then, I am going to do some of the same style stroke work that is on the tray on the inside of this piece too.  Anyway, isn't it all pretty!!!  Now, do you see why I paint on pieces that have a lot of detail?  Oh, the tray in the back was $1 at a garage sale, and the little sugar bowl was $7 at a thrift store.  Who would have thought!!!

See ya in a couple of weeks.  Hope that you all have a very blessed Christmas!!!


  1. I like how it turned out, I've pinned it in case I get an object to do this with!!

  2. Thank you. I did go back and put more of the black plum on the flat areas and I like it better now.