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How to Give Metal the Look of Copper Patina

Create the matte blue-green hues of copper left to the elements

house numbers with copper patina
Photo by ©Viktor Fischer/Alamy

A vivid verdigris tone can cover any paintable surface, thanks to a two-part paint application. The base paint contains copper bits, so any item can have this rich look. And oxidizer turns the paint the color of patinated copper.


Steps // How to Give Metal the Look of Copper Patina
1 ×

Apply The Copper Surfacer

 
Step One // How to Give Metal the Look of Copper Patina

Apply The Copper Surfacer

give metal look of copper patina apply copper surfacer to house number
Photo by Lisa Shin

Mix the copper surfacer well to ensure that the metal particles are evenly distributed. Apply a thin coat using one of the foam brushes. Let dry (about an hour) before applying a second coat. Repeat until the surface has an even coverage of copper.

 
2 ×

Apply The Patina Solution

 
Step Two // How to Give Metal the Look of Copper Patina

Apply The Patina Solution

give metal look of copper patina apply solution to house number
Photo by Lisa Shin

While the final coat is still tacky, use the second foam brush to apply the blue patina solution, making sure to wear protective gloves. Use liberally for a more overall blue color or sparingly for a more nuanced blue patina.

 
3 ×

Add More Solution

 
Step Three // How to Give Metal the Look of Copper Patina

Add More Solution

give metal look of copper patina add more solution for color change
Photo by Lisa Shin

The color will start to change within 10 to 15 minutes. Add more solution for a greater color change; if the surfacer is no longer tacky, brush a new coat on the parts you'd like to color, and reapply the solution.

 
4 ×

Add More Surfacer

 
Step Four // How to Give Metal the Look of Copper Patina

Add More Surfacer

give metal look of copper patina add more surfacer for color change
Photo by Lisa Shin

Once dry, you can add more surfacer with a sponge brush if a less overall blue look is desired.

 
5 ×

Apply a Sealer

 
Step Five // How to Give Metal the Look of Copper Patina

Apply a Sealer

give metal look of copper patina apply sealer
Photo by Lisa Shin

For outdoor use, coat with a sealer, which will halt further oxidation of the surfacer.

 
 
 

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