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Chicago Institute of Fine Finishes
504 East St. Charles Rd,
Carol Stream, IL 60188
Toll Free: 800-797-4305
Phone: 630-653-2400
FAX: 630-653-4671


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Golden Proceed Product conversion chart wit Faux Effects products

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Decortive Artist School Decorative Arts marbling and graining techniques

Decortive Artist School Decorative Arts marbling and graining techniques

The Aged Versatility of Crackle

Since beauty is found in old furnishings and antiques, it is no wonder the aged and weathered look of crackle appeals to so many. When deciding to apply crackle the question then becomes what brand or even which type? Kathy Carroll is asked that question often and carries several excellent selections: Golden Proceed, Bella Sabbia and Perfetto.

Crackle shrinks as it dries and adheres to the surface underneath it. Therefore, it is important to ensure that the surface is capable of withstanding the stress of the shrinking crackle. As it goes through its drying process it applies pressure. The surface must also be clean and free of dust or it will not adhere properly. Never force crackle todry. To do so can cause uneven drying and result in less than desirable results.

Golden Proceed offers several single-step crackle products that result in varying degrees of cracking patterns and textures. Golden Proceed Smooth Cracking Texture offers a smooth, geometric look. Golden Proceed Rough Cracking Texture has a rough, random pattern, while Golden Proceed Cracking Glaze offers a “porcelain glaze” look. The Cracking Glaze must be brushed on in a thin coat and it is recommended to use an over glaze or a topcoat with this product.

Kathy Carroll has this to say about Golden Proceed Crackle products:

The Golden Proceed products are so versatile. The Transparent Crackle can be tinted to anything. The Proceed Smooth is more of an opaque while the Proceed Rough is a rough textured crackle. All three will crack without size. The Proceed product is made to crack without size. If you put one coat down, it will crack, then if you put another down you will get even bigger cracks. You can put all three on furniture. And the Transparent Crackle will also crack foil.

Golden Proceed recommends using their product over an eggshell or semi-gloss for the best results. If a larger crackle size is desired, simply apply Proceed Cracking size in a single coat where the dry time is a minimum of four hours.

If you are looking for an old world look, Perfetto Grosezza CHP is the way to go. It is designed for use with Crackle Perfetto. These products are all acrylic, water-based products that are also wonderfully versatile. The Perfetto Grosezza XT can be tinted or used in a beautiful color washing effect.

To achieve a larger crackle, simple apply the Perfetto Grosezza in a thicker coat. A clear coat of sealer, such as the Perfetto Clear Bondaro, should be used prior to color washing due to the high porosity of Perfetto CHP.

To learn about Perfetto and Bella Sabbia, Janelle Tague was consulted for her expertise:

I used Perfetto Rotto and Perfetto Grossezza XT to create lots of cracks that looked like they were falling off. I did this in a bar creating a wall that had a look I saw in Haiti. These products give the appearance that it’s been there for a long time. The Perfetto Rotto chips off and looks like it will chip off even more. The Perfetto Grossezza XT is a thick, crusty plaster that cracks.

If you apply Bella Crackle thick it cracks bigger, if thinner then it cracks smaller. Because the thinner parts dry faster, you must allow it to dry over night so it cracks more evenly. For the Bella products, I put on two layers. When you apply a layer you can tell when it’s dry by how it changes from milky to clear. I put fans on it and then put on the second coat, leaving it to dry overnight. I use flat latex paint as the top-crackling coat or I use plaster as the topcoat.

Kathy comments on the versatility of Bella Sabbia.

The Bella Sabbia can be a crackle if you don’t put it over the size. It’s a Venetian plaster than can go without being cracked. But if you put it over size and pull it off, you get this beautiful, crusty, pulled-off affect that’s rustic and wonderful looking on a wall or furniture finish.

Janelle says temperature is a huge variable when it comes to applying crackle.

If it’s too humid it will crack differently, even if it’s raining. You have to be really careful of humidity and not enough drying time. If you put the topcoat on before it’s ready the topcoat will rip back. You can’t mess with the topcoat too much. Put it on and leave it. I have to tell my clients that the products have a mind of their own. You have to accept them for what they are.

Bella products do not drip, run or chip. You can put them on with a brush or stipple giving it a uniform look. If there is a big area, I can roll it on. I have used them to create cracked stenciling, putting the crackle down first, and then troweling plaster through the stencil so it looked old and crusty. It was really cool.

I’ve used the Bella products on cabinets to make a black cabinet have the cherry wood show through. I used the crackle to make it look distressed, sanding areas here and there. Sometimes I’ve used the Proceed transparent taking wax to fill the cracks. It’s different than cracking paint or plaster; its delicate, smaller like cracked china, a little more elegant. I can rub metallic waxes into it. If people don’t want a heavy cracked look transparent crackle is a good choice.

Crackle certainly has a lot of personality to offer. As long as humidity concerns, cleanliness before the surface application, and the dry time are followed, crackle can turn out to be a transforming experience. If you have further questions regarding crackle, call Chicago Institute of Fine Finishes today and we will be happy to help.

Increase your Profit Margin with Quick Inspirations

Kathy Carroll has come up with a way to assist decorative artists with time management, profit margins and keeping abreast of the latest trends. How is she doing this? By promptly delivering Quick Inspiration samples on the first of every month to busy artisans.

Faux by Kathy Quick Inspirtations Faux by Kathy Quick Inspirtations Faux by Kathy Quick Inspirtations Faux by Kathy Quick Inspirtations
Faux by Kathy Quick Inspirtations Faux by Kathy Quick Inspirtations Faux by Kathy Quick Inspirtations Faux by Kathy Quick Inspirtations

You too can enjoy the conveniences Quick Inspiration has to offer including monthly additions to your portfolio without the demands on your time. For the most cost effective savings simply order a 12-month subscription for only $260 including shipping, or try a one-month order for $27.50, shipping included. Each order includes one 8 ½ by 10 sample as well as three different 3 by 3 color waves, in addition to the recipe. Kathy says, “If your customer loves the finish but would like it in another color, you will be able to show them the different 3 by 3 color waves.”

Faux by Kathy Quick Inspirtations Faux by Kathy Quick Inspirtations Faux by Kathy Quick Inspirtations Faux by Kathy Quick Inspirtations
Faux by Kathy Quick Inspirtations Faux by Kathy Quick Inspirtations Faux by Kathy Quick Inspirtations Faux by Kathy Quick Inspirtations

“We stay current in colors in the marketplace. Every month you will get something new to sell so that you don’t have to think about creating. We try not to do anything that is over three layers to make them more profitable. Since we are not product specific, it gives you the versatility of mixing and matching products. This gives your portfolio a new look and allows you to match your customers budget.”

There is flexibility with Quick Inspirations. Past samples can be ordered and applied to your subscription. “We have several artisans that order for interior designers and one for themselves. This increases their profits, while keeping something fresh in front of their interior designers.” Give Quick Inspirations a try today.

Get Ready for: The 27th Annual IDAL Convention & Exposition

The 27th Annual IDAL Convention & Expo is around the corner. This year is going to be held in Reno, Nevada from July 24 to 28, 2012. Make your reservations at the Grand Sierra Resort to for a variety of experiences taught by master artisans. There will be 36 workshops, many of them hands-on, with varying degrees of levels to lure in every artisan imaginable. Don’t miss this incredible networking opportunity.

Faux by Kathy Quick Inspirtations
Click Here to purchase
Quick Inspirations

Quick Inspirations

May's Sample Pack
Keep your portfolio up to date with high quality boards sent right to your door each month!  Each Quick Inspirations sample pack includes a 9 x 10 sample with a recipe for the finish as well as three 3 x 3 color waves.  What an amazing addition to your portfolio without the demands on your time!

Try our sample pack for only $27.50.  For the most cost effective savings order a 12 month supply at only $260 and receive a new Quick Inspirations sample pack delivered to your door each month.  Call now, we look forward to hearing from you!

Click Here to purchase Quick Inspirations >

Would You Like to Be Artisan of the Month?Faux By Kathy Decorative Artisan of the Month

Have you ever wanted to be featured as an Artisan of the Month on our website?  Now’s your chance!  All you have to do to be considered is contact our office.  If you are selected, you will need to be available for a 30 to 45 minute phone interview and provide us with at least 10 pictures of your work, and a picture of yourself to be featured with your article. 

The increased visibility alone is worth it!  What have you got to lose?  Contact us today!

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