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Preserving patina surfaces


#1

I have some pieces that I’ve patinaed with liver of sulpher. I’ve
waxed them, but am finding they are still getting battered more than
I like. Does anyone have a coating they use to preserve a patinaed
surface – preferably a matte finish? The pieces are at the bottom of
my website at www.namitawiggers.com to give you an idea of what I am
working on. The series is based on an Indian embroidery technique
called shisha, so the centers must stay polished with the tops a
rich, dark color to make the stitching pop properly. The earrings and
pendants hold up fine – but the edges on the bracelets aren’t
making me happy. (blame the piece, not the maker : )

Thanks in advance for any suggestions. . . .
Namita Wiggers


#2

So no one out there has ANY suggestions on how best to preserve
patinas??

I have some pieces that I've patinaed with liver of sulpher. I've
waxed them, but am finding they are still getting battered more
than I like. Does anyone have a coating they use to preserve a
patinaed surface -- preferably a matte finish? The pieces are at
the bottom of my website at www.namitawiggers.com to give you an
idea of what I am working on. The series is based on an Indian
embroidery technique called shisha, so the centers must stay
polished with the tops a rich, dark color to make the stitching pop
properly. The earrings and pendants hold up fine -- but the edges
on the bracelets aren't making me happy. (blame the piece, not the
maker : ) 

Namita


#3

Hi Namita,

what kind of wax are you using? The edges on the bracelets see the
most wear and this is the most likely reason why the patina is not
doing so well. I’d suggest a hard wax - silicone or carnuba - but
even then they’d need to be re-applied about once a year. If you’re
still not happy, you could try a lacquer. Wattyl makes one called
Incralac. It will yellow eventually (all lacquers will) but you
shouldn’t need to re-apply it for about 5 to 7 years. Unfortunately,
lacquers will tend towards a glossy appearance.

Hope this helps
Eileen


#4

Dear Eileen

THANK YOU!

You gave me some ways to experiment and I very much appreciate it. I
have been using Johnson’s paste wax; someone suggested switching to
Renaissance Wax. I did see a lacquer in the Rio catalog, and I know
there are others at the local art supply store but haven’t yet made
it in to get one to try. And perhaps something at an auto paint
store. . .

If it means preserving the patina, I can live with a glossy finish.

I do realize that changing the design so that the edges are
protected better is always an option – but I wanted to understand
how preserve things first since that will be necessary regardless of
how I re-design the work.

Have you re-applied lacquer after years on any work? Am I right in
assuming that re-application means a light sanding off of the old
lacquer layer, re-doing the patina if needed, and then re-applying
lacquer?

Namita
www.namitawiggers.com


#5

Dear Namita,

I have yet to re-apply a coating to anything I have previously
coated but usually remove coatings applied by other people (I’m a
conservator). Re-application of a lacquer does not necesssarily
require sanding. I prefer to soak the object in a suitable solvent
(usually acetone). It may take a couple of fresh solvent baths as
the solvent will discolour as the lacquer dissolves - it turns
yellow. Once your object is clean and grease-free (the other bonus
of useing acetone) you can re-dip your piece providing the patina is
still to your liking.

Eileen