ranger patina tutorial

Tutorial of the Week: Altering Metal Using Ranger Patinas

Good Morning, everyone!  As promised, I’m back with another tutorial for you all 🙂  The last couple of weeks I switched gears a little and shared a quick project that uses some of the techniques we have learned so far.  I also showed you guys how to create a shelving unit to hold all your sprays and paints…along with downloadable instructions!  Well, this week I thought I would focus back on another method of altering your ButterBeeScraps metal…today, we shall go over the different methods of using Ranger’s patinas 🙂

Ranger patinas (created for Vintaj) are similar to alcohol inks in a few ways – they are very fast drying, they are permanent, and they are intended to be used on non-porous surfaces such as metal.  That said, they are quite different from alcohol inks in that they are water based, making clean up quick and easy.  They use a pigment as the colorant, which makes them opaque.  They are also UV safe and acid free, which makes them a great choice for use on jewelry pieces.

You don’t need a sealer after using these patinas on your metal; however, there are times when you might want to…if you leave exposed metal that you do not want to discolor over time, for example.  There is a glaze in the product line that is intended for this purpose.  It also can be used to extend the working time of the patinas, and even given them a translucent effect.

I was going to break out the patinas and get dirty myself to show you how I use them, but I found a great tutorial created for Joggles on YouTube…and honestly, I don’t think I could have done a better job.  …so let’s dive in!


  • metal yumminess (of course)
  • Ranger patinas (created for Vintaj)
  • mica powders
  • Glaze
  • Vintaj burnishing block
  • non-stick craft sheet
  • paint brush
  • glass with water

Before you get started with any of these methods, it is very important that you protect your work surface.  Remember…this stuff is permanent and you don’t have a ton of time to work with it.  Even though it is water based, after it has dried you cannot clean it up using water.

Another important thing to keep in mind…these little bottles of patinas all have a little metal ball inside them to aid with mixing.  Make sure that it is loose and the patina is mixed really well, or you may just be disappointed in the results.

Method #1

Squeeze a little bit of each of the colors of patina that you would like to use onto your craft sheet.

ranger patina tutorial

Using a dry paint brush, pick up some of the patina and dab it onto your metal piece…do NOT brush it on.  You will not get the patina into all the little crevices and you’ll be left with brush strokes.

ranger patina tutorial

Continue working with and blending the patinas onto your metal piece.  These patinas blend very nicely while they remain wet.  Once dry, however, you won’t be able to blend or move the pigment around.

ranger patina tutorial

Once you are happy with the look of your piece, allow the patina to dry.  If you’re impatient like me, you can use your heat tool…just be careful not to burn yourself…remember that you are heating metal!  After the patina is dry, use the Vintaj burnishing block to remove some of the patina from the high spots on the metal.  If you don’t have a burnishing block, you can always use super fine steel wool that you can get from any hardware store.  Here is the final result:

ranger patina tutorial

For extra protection, or if you’d like to ensure that the color of the exposed metal doesn’t change over time, paint a thin layer of the Vintaj glaze onto your piece to seal it.

Method #2

This method is very similar to Method #1; however, instead of using the burnishing block to remove some of the patina, you can use the Vintaj glaze 🙂  This results in a weathered look that is a bit more subtle than Method #1.  All you have to do is put a bit of the glaze onto a paper towel and wipe some of the patina off of your piece while it is still wet.  This will not work after your patina has dried.  You can see the results here on the leaves on the left:

ranger patina tutorial

Method #3

As mentioned above, you can mix the patina and glaze to both extend the working time of the patina, but also to make the patinas more translucent.  The recommended ratio for mixing is 1 part patina to 3 parts glaze, but that can be changed based on your preference.  You can use this mixture in a couple of different ways…

Number 1

You can use it over a piece that you have already added a patina to in order to “shabbify” it a bit more.  Here’s a look at the results when a light glaze is added over the green wing from Method #1:

ranger patina tutorial

Number 2

You can use it like you did the patina in Method #1 to add a faint hint of color to your piece.  This works really well on white resin pieces, but is totally worth experimenting with on darker metals.  Here’s a look at a resin piece from the video that was done in this way:

ranger patina tutorial

Method #4

For this next method, we are going to put the patinas aside and work with the glaze and…drumroll please…mica powders!  To start, mix some mica powder into a small amount of glaze.  I would start with a ratio of 1 part mica powder to 3 parts glaze.  Again, you can play with this ratio all you want to suit your needs.

Now, just dab on the glaze and mica powder mixture using a paint brush just like in Method #1:

ranger patina tutorial

Once the glaze is dry, you can leave your piece as is, or use the burnishing block to remove some of the mica powder from the raised areas of your design.  Here’s a look at a pair of wings that was created using the Mint colored Perfect Pearls, and then burnished once the glaze had dried:

ranger patina tutorial

Method #5

You can just as easily use these patinas as paint because they do blend beautifully.  Start by adding a small amount of glaze and the patina colors you want to work with onto your craft sheet.

Start by painting on your first color.  Add subsequent colors that you want to blend by first picking up a small amount of glaze then dabbing on the color and blending it with your previous colors.  The glaze helps extend the working time and really helps the colors to blend nicely without leaving harsh lines.  Here’s a good look at how beautifully these pigments blend together:

ranger patina tutorial

Method #6

Do you remember how we inked those brads using the alcohol inks?  While you can get beautifully colored brads that way, you may want some with a more opaque or enameled looking finish.  So…why not dip the head of your brads into some of the patinas?

ranger patina tutorial

Well that’s it for the Joggles video.  Like I said…this video was very well done and covered alot of different methods of using the Ranger patinas and glaze.  Here’s a look at the complete video:

Although the above video is pretty comprehensive, there is one other method of using these pigments that I think is noteworthy…and guess what?  Yes!  I found another video created by Beadaholique that illustrates this last method 🙂  Just a quick side note here…if you love to learn, Beadaholique has a plethora of fantastic video tutorials over on their website that are totally worth checking out.

Method #7

This last method results in a beautiful mottled look 🙂  Start by adding your first layer of pigment by dabbing the patina onto your metal piece.  Before the patina dries, take a small piece of paper towel and blot some of the pigment off of your piece:

ranger patina tutorial

Continue to add patches of different colored patinas to your piece, making sure to blot with a clean piece of paper towel after each color and before the patina dries.  You can also use the burnishing block to expose some of the base metal color after the patina has dried.  Here’s a look at the finished result:

ranger patina tutorial

Again, if you’re more of a video person, this technique is shown at 4:48 of Beadaholique’s video:


Well, that’s it for today…that’s it?  That was alot to digest wasn’t it?  I know you all appreciate it, and I have been really loving all the comments and “thank you’s” for doing these tutorials.  Thanks for popping by and I hope you have a great weekend.  Cheers!