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How to Create this Texture?


I saw a texture yesterday that I loved, but I’m not sure how it is
done - perhaps someone here has some ideas?

It looks like a bigger / stronger version of what would come from
scrubbing a piece of metal in a circular motion with a piece of
steel wool - the inscribed lines / marks are more circular than
straight and have varying lengths and depths into the metal. Very
random. I think the edges of the marks are too sharp to have been
done by roller printing…

Any ideas?

thanks -


sounds like a cup shaped wire brush on a flexshaft or drill. if you
put the mounted,(brass) wire brush in a drill press and move the
metal substrate, you can get perfectly rounded texture by lowering
the tool to the same depth to cover the suface of the metal with
equally rounded and cut circular patterns. however, it can be done
with roll printing as well. you should check out Jinks McGrath’s
book on texturing and coloring metals…she covers a brief explanation
of various ways to achieve many textures by cutting paper and fabric,
wrapping wire, thread and twine, using found objects like leaves
,sandpaper, and woven or pressed items etc, between brass sheets to
roll print onto a number of readily available metals. Without seeing
what you are trying to describe i can only imagine that you have
spotted the proliferation of textured aluminum and stainless steel
products in home and garden centers that i have also seen in
abundance ( trendy, no?)- one particularly common texture is aluminum
covered with circular brushed or blasted patterning in which the
circles are distinct but merge covering the entire thing…as if you
took a paintbrush and applied pressure when loaded with paint to make
a circle and each fiber of the brush is visible in the pattern
/circle that results…


Hi Ivy

I saw something that looked like this when a jeweler was
demonstrating the use of the 3M bristle brushes on the flex shaft. It
looked like pretty, feathery, circular-wise designs. Very pretty…I
don’t know how you would preserve the finish once created though.