Alligator Skin Crackle Finishes
Issue: Issue 147
Posted Date: 4/11/2006
Q: I don't know the actual name, but I want to hand brush a finish on wood that looks like alligator skin. Can you help?
Michael Dresdner: It is called crackle, and several companies sell ready-to-use versions: you brush or spray them on, and they crackle. If you can't find it in the store, here's a simple homegrown version. Seal the wood, then paint on a coat of liquid hide glue. Wait until it is just dry enough to squeak when you run a knuckle over it, then paint with any waterbased paint. The paint will crackle in seconds as you watch it. A thicker layer of paint means larger crackles.