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Behind the Scenes : Beautiful Crackled Boxes

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photo by David M. Russell/Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia

I had such a fun time on television demonstrating our new Martha Stewart Crafts Paint line with Martha. We made these beautiful crackled boxes—perfect for gifts and jewelry.

Beth writes: "Have you tried the crackle effect on the papier-mâché boxes or the jewelry cardboard boxes?"

The answer is yes, Beth. The boxes we used were a combination of real wooden boxes and the thicker sturdier papier-mâché boxes. The crackle effects will work on these surfaces, but be sure not to oversaturate your boxes so the paper does not warp as you work with it.

Weather Crackled Boxes

Weather crackled boxes

These boxes were created using one of our eight specialty effects. To create them, first paint the box with a base coat of a color of your choice. Then apply a layer of Weather Crackle Effect. Let dry completely, and brush one final coat of a contrasting paint color and watch the magic happen!

Weather crackle closeup

I especially love using the Fine Crackle Effect to create an old china and porcelain look.

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I especially love using the Fine Crackle Effect to create an old china and porcelain look.

1 I especially love using the Fine Crackle Effect to create an old china and porcelain look.

Close-up of the Fine Crackle Effect.

2 Close-up of the Fine Crackle Effect.

A favorite trick of mine is to use our patterning tape to create a plaid. After the painting the box with our pearlized paint Eclipse, tape straight lines across the box. Paint between the the tape with our pearlized mother-of-pearl paint.

3 A favorite trick of mine is to use our patterning tape to create a plaid. After the painting the box with our pearlized paint Eclipse, tape straight lines across the box. Paint between the the tape with our pearlized mother-of-pearl paint.

Remove the tape, and repeat the steps, now taping vertically.  Peel the tape away to reveal the beautiful results.

4 Remove the tape, and repeat the steps, now taping vertically. Peel the tape away to reveal the beautiful results.

I surprised Martha at the end of the show with a strand of 70 white pearls I had been collecting for over a year for her birthday. I hand-drilled each pearl and strung them on a leather cord.

5 I surprised Martha at the end of the show with a strand of 70 white pearls I had been collecting for over a year for her birthday. I hand-drilled each pearl and strung them on a leather cord.

A special shout out to Hosanna Houser and Barbara Fight for helping produce this segment; they love crafts!

6 A special shout out to Hosanna Houser and Barbara Fight for helping produce this segment; they love crafts!

Thanks to Martha and the crew for a fun day!

7 Thanks to Martha and the crew for a fun day!

Comments (10)

  • I'm very intrigued by the fine crackle effect. It would definitely elevate the most ho-hum box into some that looked like an antique.

  • I have done crackle technique before, will Martha Stewart crackle work on a piece of wood? I have an old magazine box I would like to crackle.

  • Crafter Comment:

    Hi Lauri,

    Yes, the crackle will work on wood.

    Happy crafting!
    The Crafts Dept.

  • Hey, Martha I made my Christmas from your craft products.

    I do hope my family come thru.
    Have a Happy holiday.

  • I have tried using MS brand crackle twice and it does not work well. An instructional video would be nice.

  • I tried painting a sanded wood table with the Martha Stewart fine crackle effect. I used Martha Stewart Summer Linen Satin acrylic paint as my base coat, and because I was covering a dark wood with a light color paint, I had to use about three coats of paint, and let each coat dry 12-24 hours. I then brushed a thin coat of the crackle medium on top and let it dry. I topped it with another brand of acrylic paint in a contrasting color, but I saw no crackling whatsoever. Any tips on what went wrong, or how to fix it? Thank you!

  • Crafter Comment:

    Hi Amanda,
    There are a number of things you could try. When you get your fine crackle effect, I recommend rolling the bottle on the table to mix it, as some of the materials in the medium may have settled as it was sitting on the shelf. When applying it to your painted surface, the bottom layers should be completely cured (you waited the appropriate amount of time) I would lay on a medium thick coat, rather than a thin coat, with as few brushstrokes as possible. You should be able to see crackling within the clear coat of fine crackle itself before you apply a contrasting color.

  • Crafter Comment:

    Hi John,
    Please visit the Plaid online homepage for an instructional video. In the upper right hand corner you will see the little tv/camera icon. (PLAID TV) This will take you to all of the videos. http://www.plaidonline.com/crafting-videos.aspx . Once you are on this page, scroll down pass the orange bar and on the right you will see the videos.

  • I received emails regarding martha's crafts but my computer broke and now I have a new one. How do I start getting emails again and the newsletter.

    thanks.

    d. wright

  • Crafter Comment:

    Hi Dee,
    Luckily, this is very easy to fix! If you go to our craft department blog homepage, there is a section on the upper right that says "Craft of the day" and a space for you to write your email address. Fill it in, and press subscribe.

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