It is often extraordinary what a simple coat of paint, a touch of color, or a simple alteration can make in the appearance of things to see everyday. Even something as simple as cleaning an oil smudge off of the garage door can make the space feel much cleaner and “put-together”, so today will be one of those projects. Our mission? Breath new life into a worn-out looking metal lantern. Our tools? A few “special” coats of paint. Let’s get started.

The lantern lives outside and seems to be made out of a cheap, anodized aluminum. For inspiration, let’s take a quick look at the Pinterest pin that started it all:

As you can see, we want to develop a natural, aged feel to the otherwise “used” looking lantern. Perhaps something like this one:

And to do this we used a ‘rust’ primer, paint, and conditioning spray. Together the paint and spray will form a chemical reaction that makes the rusted look (i.e. acid + iron particles in the paint).

While I have to say that chemist in me certainly geeked out a bit at the prospect of chemically altering paint through an acid wash, the results were not what we expected. The rust color came through in ugly, striated patches and the overall impression was quite poor. In order to salvage an otherwise “pinterest fail”, I grabbed a can of spray on bedliner. It seemed that a black, mat finish would be a good, sure salve for the lantern.

The application was quite easy and after a good thick coat the lantern was good to go.

One thought on “Daily Dose: Let there be light”

  1. Update: The rust lives on as it has materialized through the bed liner paint (impressive knowing this type of paint’s properties). A follow-up blog should be about the chemistry of both the process to create our ugly rust look and possibly what happened to create this new rust look:
    https://goo.gl/photos/VMFBZhQjMcdHa7j28

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