Hammered copper is one of my all time favorite metal finishes. Something about the color of copper and rustic qualities of a hammered finish just seems to add warmth to any setting. Funny though, I don’t come across many pieces when I’m out thrifting. Hmmm? Is it because there just weren’t a lot of hammered copper decor items made? Or is it that all of the copper items are being bought up and sold to the recycling facilities before anyone who actually likes copper can buy them and take then home to enjoy?
Easy faux hammered copper paint technique
I’m going to have to investigate this copper quandary some more, but in the mean time, I wanted to try out an idea for a faux hammered copper paint technique, so while I was out thrifting for a hiking wardrobe (more on that soon), I picked up a few random metal pieces, so that I could try out the paint technique.
Mind you, I was looking for old stock pots, because I thought they would be fitting, but they were plum out, so I found an old aluminum cake pan, a flour sifter, and what I believe to be a chrome dog bowl, though I can’t be sure.
Materials used to create hammered faux copper
The two main paint products I used are listed as option A (but I have since found another product that I like even more and I have listed it as option B):
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A can of red oxide primer
Note: Because this was an experiment, the picture also shows some crafts paints, but I found that the final pieces looked better without the use of the craft paints.
I also used:
a spray bottle of a vinegar/ water mixture,
some paper towels for dabbing,
and some 400 grit sand paper for sanding.
Paint technique steps for making a hammered copper look
Step 1: I cleaned the pieces really good with a degreasing detergent.
Step 2: I sprayed the pieces with the primer and let dry. Or alternatively, apply the copper foil paint, like this one listed in option B in the materials list, above.
Step 3: I spritzed the pieces with the vinegar water mixture.
Step 4: I sprayed the pieces with the copper spray paint, if I used materials in option A.
Step 5: I dabbed the pieces just a bit with the paper towel and then let dry over night. If you don’t have enough coverage, or just want more coverage, you can repeat this process.
Tip: experiment on an object other than your project piece to get the hang of the process.
This is how it looked the next day before sanding.
Step 6: I sanded the pieces down with the 400 grit sand paper (but not too much) and then wiped with a damp cloth.
I tried to add some patina and age to the pieces with the craft paint, but that just didn’t look right, so I ended up repeating the spray paint and sanding steps.
Notice how the color and sheen look different at different times of the day.
Some of these were taken near sundown.
I really like how the technique turned out, but I wouldn’t say that it could fool anyone at close range. Update, although I will say the “foil metallic” paint (listed as option B in the materials list above) has an even more realistic copper look. I used it on my faux copper painted plastic planters and I found it really had a more realistic metal plated appearance.
However, if you are looking to add a touch of a hammered copper look to some old pots and pans, or perhaps an old lamp, I think this technique would work well.
Having experimented with this technique, I think that I am going to test and try a few more scenarios like perhaps using a antique copper metallic rub over the finished surface, for example.
Does anyone have any ideas on what else might improve this technique? Make it look more realistic? I would love to hear them.
Thanks for checking this out and remember that old saying…
Find a penny pick it up, all day long you’ll have good luck ~ Amy