For months this thought-provoking memorial to the tragedy and heroism of the fallen soldiers of World War 1, ‘Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red’, has been making headlines. The large-scale installation consists of thousands of individually hand-made ceramic poppies that have then been planted in the Tower of London, each one representing the ultimate sacrifice made by a member of the British armed services during World War One. The memorial has grown to encircle the Tower of London, filling the moat in a poignant sea of blood red, evoking the tragedy of the war.
This project has been the brainchild of Paul Cummins who we’ve had the pleasure with of working with in the past. Taking inspiration from a line in the will of a Derby native who went off to fight in the Great War only to tragically lose his life in Flanders. He wrote: ‘The Blood Swept lands and seas of red, where angels fear to tread.’, a line that serves as a tragic reminder of the horrors those who have given and continue to give their all for their country have suffered.
Each of 888,426 poppies have now been sold with the proceeds of each sale going towards charities supporting brave men and women who have served, or are currently serving, the country. The final poppy will be planted in a ceremony on Armistice Day, November 11th.
All poppies have now been sold but if you have a loved one who has served or is currently serving in the British Armed Forces or if you simply wish to make a donation you can leave a dedication on the Tower of London Remembers website here: https://poppies.hrp.org.uk/make-a-dedication
This halloween make your pumpkins and other spooky bits and bobs glow in the dark with Rustoleum Glow In The Dark Spray Paint!
This easy to apply spray paint goes on a variety of substrates and is quick drying and easy to apply. When charged in light the glow in the dark paint can continue to let off it’s spooky glow for up to 4 – 8 hours and is suitable for use both indoors and outdoors.
Just a quick update here, following on from our ‘How to Create A Bronze Effect Finish’ blogpost a few months back we’ve decided to show you just how quick and easy it is to create something that looks good using just metallic paint, a glaze and a couple of hours!
This cabinet was originally a tatty green thing but with just two coats of Liquid Metal Acrylics Blackened Bronze paint the fraying wooden wickerwork has been transformed into a glowing bronze objet d’art!
Once the paint was dry we found that the cabinet was a little shiny for something that was supposed to look old and antique. No worries though, General Finishes Glaze Effects in the Van Dyke Brown comes to the rescue! We simply brushed it over the painted surface to bring down the shine, letting it pool in the crevices of the weaving to give the appearance of that patina of age and dirt building up.
All-in-all we probably spent about two hours, not including the drying time, in painting this cabinet and I think we can all agree that for the time we put in we got a fantastic result. Now just imagine what you could do with these products!
Ultraviolet lighting, also called blacklight has been used to create vivid, vibrant visual effects in a range of venues for years but recent advances mean it’s never been easier to use this unusual, eye-catching effect in your own projects than it is now.
Blacklight paint effects have long been a staple of amusement parks and large entertainment venues largely due to the size of the UV lamps but with newer, more compact and energy-efficient models they can be effectively incorporated into interior designs with an integrated lighting design set-up. Rooms can be brightened by adding murals that, under normal light, appear bright and colourful but under a UV lamp glow with a dazzling, neon finish. Large interior spaces, like clubs and other dark venues can be decorated with ‘in your face’ fluorescent imagery for a modern, or even retro neon look or they can be enhanced with subtle, soothing designs to give a moody, atmospheric feel.
Wildfire Visible Fluorescent paints are an example of this new breed of fluorescent colours – under ordinary conditions they give bright, distinct colours and thanks to their acrylic formulation they are easy to apply and to clean up. However, under blacklight the paints come to life, glowing brilliantly and dramatically with no change in their colour. Wildfire Visible Fluorescent paint also has the distinction of being the only fluorescent paint range with a true “white” under both visible and UV light.
The Wildfire Visible Fluorescent Paint range is fully intermixable, not only with itself but with other fluorescent and non-fluorescent colours, allowing you to create just the right colour for your projects – from vivid colours to earth and flesh tones.
If you’re interested in incorporating some of these modern, unusual paints into your next project then click here to view our range of fluorescent paints.
While gold and silver are perennially in demand when it comes to creating interiors bronze has been rapidly growing in popularity as a metallic finish. Bronze has it’s own quiet refinement and is tastefully understated, bringing a warm metallic glow to a room without the brashness of other metals. Bronze has been prized since antiquity for it’s colour, for it’s tactile feel, it’s corrosion resistance and it’s hard-wearing nature – unfortunately it’s that same hard-wearing nature that makes it impractical for manufacturers to beat bronze leaves. So while you can’t gild with bronze we have several ways of creating bronze effects on surfaces for those interested in incorporating this trendy finish into their own projects.
One solution is to use variegated metal leaf; this leaf has been chemically- and heat-treated in order to create a patina on the surface. Colours 260 and 280 may technically be brass but the patina expressed on the surface is highly reminiscent of the reddish-brown of bronze for the No. 260 and No. 280 has the dark, almost black, colour bronze can develop over time. Variegated Leaf is applied in just the same way as regular leaf (demonstrated here in our basic guide to gilding), for size we recommend acrylic size as oil size may react with the leaf and tarnish it. If left unsealed the leaf will naturally tarnish and change colours over time, some customers may prefer this as it can give rise to some interesting effects but if you want to keep your finish just how you like it we recommend sealing it with a good sealer such as Universal Lacquer.
Unsurprisingly given the popular nature of the bronze finish several paint manufacturers have come together to create easy to apply, authentic faux-bronze finishes. Some of these paints are water-based and some are solvent-based, some are suitable only for indoors and some only for outdoors but with our wide variety of stocked paints you’re sure to find something perfect for your individual needs.
The Ardenbrite Metallic Paint system is a comprehensive solvent-based system for applying a metallic effect finish to practically any surface, interior or exterior. It consists of a QD Basecoat, the Ardenbrite Metallic Paint and finally the Ardenbrite Protective Glaze and is ideal for the redecoration of houses, hotels, restaurants and pubs – several bridges in London have also been painted with it!
The Ardenbrite Metallic Paint system currently has two bronze colours – Bronze No. 27 which is a warm reddish-brown bronze, much like a new penny and an aged bronze colour, fittingly enough called Old Penny Bronze No. 35.
Liquid Metal Acrylics is a water-based paint that’s also suitable for a wide range of applications, both interior and exterior. While not a comprehensive system like the Ardenbrite it is compatible with any acrylic-comptaible primer and sealer such as the Polyvine Decorators Varnish and the Zinsser Primer. Being water-based it’s easy to apply, low-odour and can be cleaned up using water. Liquid Metals comes in a comprehensive range of metallic shades that include two bronze colours – Bronze and an aged effect Blackened Bronze. The Regency and Autumn Gold, while not bronze, do have rich bronze effects to them. All the colours in the range are freely intermixable, so you can mix the perfect shade for your project.
Modern Masters Reactive Paint is a comprehensive paint system that’s suitable for interior and exterior use and creates fantastic and authentic finishes on any properly primed surface. This product is perhaps the most interesting of all the bronze paints that we do; the paint itself contains actual metallic particles that in tandem with the special patina Activators can create authentic patinas of wear and corrosion in hours rather than years! It does even have to be used with the Patina either, if left unsealed these paints will tarnish naturally over time giving life to surfaces finished with them.
While the range only has the one Bronze colour the endless range of effects that you can create with it using the patina activator means one is more than enough! The reactive paint range is a complete system consisting of primer, paint, patina activator and sealer that are used together in concert to create the perfect finish to your own specifications.