Top Ten Tips for Antiquing and Personalising your Cast Stone
Wednesday, October 19, 2016
For Halloween we thought we would mix a witch’s brew of our own. Only joking, these are the secret recipes for antiquing Chilstone from our expert Duncan Smith! Eight tips to speed up the ageing process so your Chilstone cast stone looks like it’s always been there (and two extra ones to add a unique twist). Tricks to make your garden look a treat for Halloween and all year round.
The Dairy Sweep
Paint the stone with a mixture of natural yoghurt and chimney soot. For ease of painting semi skimmed milk can be added 50 / 50 to the mix to make it more liquid ( and go further ). This treatment darkens the stone and encourages the growth of moss and lichens. If too much is applied or the colour is too dark simply wash off with a watering can. If the colour Is not grey enough add more soot to the mixture and reapply.
Mix together the following ingredients and let the rain wash off over time.1 pot of natural yogurt, 1 pint of semi skimmed milk.½ a pint of green stagnant water. Black silt from a gutter. Handful of peat. Handful of cow / horse manure. Soot can be added to help grey the stone down.
Rub a clump of moss over the stone to disperse the spores over its surface, some of which will settle in the stone and generate new growths. The moss can be dipped in a yogurt and milk mixture to make this method even more effective.
Buried Alive (Well, not really alive, but it is Halloween!)
Statues can be laid flat and then buried in damp earth and left for a couple of months.
Up to Your Neck in It
Leaving the ornament in tall grass or a dense thicket of plants for a few months will also speed up the weathering process, especially if it’s in a damp shaded area.
Oak leaves in water readily produces a brown tannin which stains the stone in a very short period of time, this is especially successful with fountains as the feature is constantly having the stained water running over it.
If artistic, acrylic paints mixed with water can be used. Use ½ a teaspoon of paint to a cup of water and stir well. Paint on with a brush or sponge. Dark green, black and brown work best. Pay attention to areas of relief and to mimic weathering spots use a slightly thicker solution and flick it on to the stone using a brush.
The stone can be artificially antiqued using a ready made solution available from Chilstone. It’s applied to the stone
using the supplied spray gun and is so effective we used it on the award winning Chelsea Flower Show garden this year with John Everiss and Meningitis Now. A couple of applications, 10 minutes apart, will lightly grey the stone down but if a more antique look is required just add further coats until the desired look is achieved.
Go glam and add gold leaf to your Chilstone pieces, to make it extra special.
Chilstone can be painted to have a completely different look, not weathered, but coloured to make it a feature with pain that pops to make a statement. Sir Roy Strong did this in his famous Laskett Garden, using blue and yellow.
Whichever way you choose to customise your cast stone, you can personalise to fit your look and your garden. The more Chilstone weathers, the more it resembles carved stone and increases in value.
Don't forget, we have a resident engraver to make each piece truly special. Just give us a call and ask. We are here to help to make sure that your Chilstone piece looks a treat. Happy Halloween!