Tag Archives: decorating garden accessories

Some Verdigris and Rust to Antique Contemporary Vases

I have to apologize for being away from my blog for awhile – I have been so busy with work that I am exhausted by the time I get home.  I know – no excuses –  but I will have so much to blog about very soon.  I have been hard at work on a restaurant that will be opening in May.  It’s coming out so beautiful – I can’t wait to post the “after” pictures!


small metal vase before antiquing and rusting

Today, I just wanted to show a quick project that I am also working on for a wonderful client – Debbi Boehl, floral designer and owner of Honeysuckle and Roses on the east end of Long Island.  She had purchased some very inexpensive tall vases that she needed for a few projects – but she wound up not using them because they were too contemporary and, truth be told, too ugly!  She saved money by purchasing them for a few dollars apiece – but she never used them!  She gave them to me and said “Do something with them – anything will be an improvement!”

a large ugly vase before

She gave me a little hint on what she wanted – some rusting and perhaps some patina on the vases.  I started experimenting on a small vase and one of the larger vases to show her a few ideas. I love anything verdigris – and I seem to love a bronze undercoat more than copper – so I started with that. First, I had to prime and because the large vases were some sort of plastic, I used an oil-based primer.  Then I did 2 coats of Modern Masters’ Antique Bronze Metallic paint.

some primer and some bronze paint

I’ve used verdigris before, especially in stenciling – but I never did it on an object, so I had to figure out how to make it look realistic.  On the small vase I put it in my slop sink and I dipped two verdigris colors (I used Faux Effects light and medium verdigris colors) on a chip brush, then I poured some water on the brush to let it drip down.  On this small vase, I didn’t like the drip look so much – so I took a piece of cheesecloth and I mottled the colors together over the bronze. When that was dry, I used Faux Effects’ Rust kit to effect more age on the piece.  It’s a two part system – first you put on a texture and then, once dry, you put on a rust glaze.  I wasn’t as fond of the “orangey” color, so once it was dry, I took a small brush and dry brushed a dark brown tint over the rusted areas – especially on the edges to give more depth.  I dry brushed this tint on other areas of the vase to age it further.

rust and verdigris on vase

In determining where to put rust on a piece – it helps to look at Pinterest for some old rusted pieces (looking here helps with verdigris also!! As you know, there are some awesome pics on this site!)  I didn’t want a lot of rust – so I chose to add it where the piece was joined and also on the bottom of the vase – where it most likely would have sat in water and rusted naturally.

On the larger vase, I let the verdigris colors drip – and then I took the cheesecloth and I stretched the colors down – so that they were not as drippy looking.  I left some of the streaks of drippiness – if it looked like something natural.  If I had a little too much of the medium color – I let it dry and then I dripped some of the lighter tone in.

This is a great project – especially for your porch or garden.  Because Debbi will be handling these a lot with wet hands – I am going to be top coating first with a product called Duragard (from Faux Effects) and then a topcoat of C-500 in a dull sheen (also from that company).  The C-500 will help waterproof the vase.

Hope you enjoyed this little project.  It was a lot of fun!!


Sharing this with…Between Naps on the Porch


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