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Unread 07-06-2012, 10:31 PM   #1
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Tarnishing steel

Right now I'm making a Eowyn as Dernhelm costume, and she wears a mail shirt that's pretty distressed, almost yellow-y, like this http://www.costumersguide.com/eowyn/d25.jpg How do you get it to look like that? Is there a chemical you can soak it in, or a paint? The mail I'll be using for this is steel.

Last edited by lunasol : 07-07-2012 at 05:03 PM.
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Unread 07-08-2012, 12:31 AM   #2
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Honestly I'm just taking a shot in the dark, but I know that I have soaked plastics into boiling water mixed with dye in order to tint it said color. So I hypothesize that by doing the same thing with metal it might leave behind a stain.

Otherwise there is always just brute force painting it. Dye is pretty darn cheap so maybe some experimenting is in order?

I tried >_<.
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Unread 07-08-2012, 02:24 AM   #3
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They sell paints at michaels to tarnish metal!
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Unread 07-08-2012, 02:37 PM   #4
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Really? That's cool, do you know what they're called? Do they keep them in the paint section?
And yeah, stabbity, that might work. I'm just worried about paint chipping off, because the mail rings are always rubbing together.
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Unread 07-08-2012, 02:52 PM   #5
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if it's stainless steel, you need paint of some sort. if it isn't stainless steel all you need is water and time, steel 'tarnish' is actually just rust.
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Unread 07-10-2012, 02:41 PM   #6
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When you apply a substance to create a certain type of oxidation on a metal, it is called a patina. The major supplier and information source for patinas I've seen is a company called Sculpt Nouveau. I think the color you want is the Tan patina listed here: http://www.sculptnouveau.com/Details...=34&category=6
However, you might want to search out an example of what that particular patina looks like on steel, because they each have different effects on different metals.

Again, you'll need to be making mild-steel or carbon-steel chain mail for this stuff to work. Less is more with chain-mail, since I don't know if you can do a decent job sealing (clearcoating) chainmail, which is what is normally done to halt further oxidation and coloring.
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