"Of all the definitions and illustrations and examples we can give, primitive art may be best described as "Works of love". Its a teddy bear or simple doll or stuffed pillow or favorite quilt that a child has loved and held and slept with until it was almost worn out.
We think of our own children when they were young and gave us a crayon picture with the caption "I Love You" And we remember our own cherished toys. We long for our lost doll and wish that just once more, we could hold her and be comforted by her softness and hug her until there was nothing left but the memory. Primitive art revives the memory, gives us comfort and takes us back to a simple time when gifts came from the heart and one toy was a friend forever."
This quote came from a wonderful primitive site that is loaded with information. The site is Homespun Peddler. The primitive items that people are buying are rag balls, lace doilies that are tea stained to look old, tin items, candles of all types, wire rug beaters, antique bobbins and rustic wooden items. Baskets are always a part of this style, too.
I think the reason that people like primitive decorating is that it takes them back to a simpler time. That is one reason why antiques are so popular. I know they are collectible, too, but for the most part, the rustic country look is homey and comfortable. My husband and I were lucky enough to receive many old family heirlooms and have decorated our guest room and family room with a variety of antiques. Because antiques are fairly expensive, we have incorporated many items that were actually new and made them look old. The crackling technique that many of you have used is a good example of how to make new furniture look old. Because this is a big part of what I make, I am always looking for new ideas.
Thanks to Kim and the switch to one-list, I found another wonderful group called Primitive Haven. During the last several weeks, I have listened and learned many things to incorporate into the primitive country look. Primitive dolls and pillows are big, grunge candles with potpourri around them, wooden garden angels and much more. One thing that is very big is rusted tin. I have several small tin watering cans and pails that I just could not get to rust. The Primitive Haven group had two methods of rusting tin that I am going to try. You may come up with other ways to use these techniques.
For "light" rusting:
- Pour APPLE CIDER (Must be APPLE CIDER) vinegar into an all-metal cookie sheet with sides. DO NOT use Teflon coated, enamelware, glass or plastic containers.
- Immerse tin into APPLE CIDER vinegar making sure the piece of tin is completely covered. Leave the tin in the vinegar for approximately 20-30 minutes. IT WILL NOT RUST IN THE PAN OF VINEGAR.
- Lift tin out of the vinegar and stand up on edge to dry. (Be sure to protect drying surface). DO NOT WIPE VINEGAR OFF. The tin will rust as it is air drying. The rusting could take 30 min. to 3-4 hours depending on the humidity in your area. The longer you air dry, the more rusty it looks. When tin is completely dry, it will turn a copper color with uneven streaks and swirls.
For heavy rusting:
This must be done in a well-ventilated area or outdoors. Use an all-metal cookie sheet with sides. DO NOT use Teflon-coated, enamelware, glass or plastic containers.
- Measure 2 cups of CLOROX or any household bleach and pour into a metal cookie sheet with sides. Add l cup of APPLE CIDER vinegar and mix thoroughly.
- Immerse tin into solution. Tin has to be completely covered. It will start rusting immediately in the solution. It takes approx. 2-3 min.
- Lift out of solution and stand on edge to dry. It will become very rusty. Let air dry completely for approx. 1-3 hours or overnight. When it is completely dry, wipe some of the rust off with a dry cloth...this is optional.
We've all discovered it. s almost impossible to rust galvanized metal. So here's a recipe for "fake rust".
Very lightly spritz with rustoleum "Rusty Metal Primer V7769" (this is a neat brown-red color), then lightly sprinkle on some craft silicon sand ( this can be kept in a old salt shaker), then very lightly spritz with the Rustoleum again. Wipe off excess sand, and seal with a matte spray. It is important to keep a light hand here so that some of the metal can peek through.
Rusting Galvanized Tin
Use muratic acid to take the galvanizing off of the tin. Clean the tin with water and spray or dip it in apple cider vinegar and set it outside to rust. It should rust overnight. Spray more vinegar on it for more rust to form. The person that gave me this tip had used it on new watering cans and it had worked well. She also suggested doing this outside due to the nasty smell.
Another quick trick that I learned was how to age fabric or doilies with tea or coffee. Here are three ways to do it:
Put twice as much coffee grounds as you usually do in your coffeemaker and brew up some coffee. Then put the coffee in another container and add the fabric or doilies.
Put 10 tea bags in about a quart of boiling water. Let them steep. When it looks dark, add the fabric or doilies
You can also sprinkle coffee crystals on the doily after it is dyed and it will add additional staining.
This group also suggested using hair dye to make fabric with polyester in it look tea-dyed. I haven. t tried that, but I have some fabric that is going to get tested! Other ideas that they shared were how to make grunge candles and how to dry fruit for potpourri or decorative uses. The list goes on and on.