How to Create a Crackle Finish

4 Materials
1 Hour
This video will teach you how to achieve a crackle finish. This technique can be used on wood or walls as seen in the video. Jeremy gives us two trade secrets: what to use to get a subtle crackle and what to use to get a larger crackle finish for a more expansive area or desired look. These two common ingredients can be used to create this elevated finish.
Step 1: Watch the video tutorial for a clear explanation.
Step 2: Select your project and gather the supplies. Gum arabic will be used for more subtle crackle (craquelure) and powdered coffee creamer will be used for larger cracks for a larger area. Dilute the medium 1:1 - 1 part water to 1 part crackle medium (powdered coffee creamer or gum arabic).
Step 3: You start by painting one coat of paint on your surface. Let that dry. Then brush the crackle medium over the surface. The crackle medium is the mixture of what you created in Step 2. Let the crackle medium dry and brush on your desired color of water based paint that you want to crack. This will expose the base coat. You can dry naturally or force dry on COOL to bring about the cracks.

Step 4: Use an air duster to create custom cracks in areas you desire.

Watch the video tutorial to see what we did with a black base coat, crackle medium and white top layer.

Enjoy this elevated finish on furniture or as a feature wall.

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Suggested materials:
  • Powdered Coffee Creamer   (Amazon)
  • Gum Arabic   (Amazon)
  • Air Duster   (Amazon)
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Frequently asked questions
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3 of 8 questions
  • Kathy Thomas Kathy Thomas on Jun 15, 2017

    Can you use home made chalk paint ? Is the water to creamer cold ? Thank you your finishes are amazing! Thank you for the tips not many people are willing to share .

  • Debbie Debbie on Jun 15, 2017

    Really found this helpful and informative! Thank you!

    I'm not sure but it seemed to me that the written directions say the opposite of what the video says. Isn't it the coffee creamer that produces larger crackature and the gum arabic the smaller cracks?

  • Ironhorse68450 Ironhorse68450 on Jun 16, 2017

    What kind of paint did you use....acrylic or latex? Thank you so much!!

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2 of 15 comments
  • Delicia Ambrosino Delicia Ambrosino on Jun 17, 2017

    Creamer has to be dissolved in hot water. I know, I tried dissolving it in a luke warm cup of coffee before and got lumps that would not dissolve - even after a quick reheat many didn't dissolve. So, dissolve the creamer in hot and let it cool completely is what I would suggest.

  • Delicia Ambrosino Delicia Ambrosino on Jun 17, 2017

    Great idea. TY for sharing