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Tim Holtz® Distress Crackle Paint

Published on: February 12th, 2012 11:17 PM Posted in: Tips and Techniques

Tim Holtz® Distress Crackle Paint

A multitude of looks can be created, from grungy to vintage distressed to shabby chic!


Decades of Distress in one simple step! Tim Holtz® Distress Crackle Paint is a unique one-step paint that cracks as it dries. Use with the fabulous Distress Paint palette. A multitude of looks can be created, from grungy to vintage distressed to shabby chic!

Here are some tips on how to get the best results with Distress Crackle Paint!

1. Shake the jar well. If it is a little thicker, add some mists of water with a Mini Mister™. Stir and add more mists of water as needed until you have a smoother consistency. Note: only add water to Crackle Paint IF NEEDED.

2. Apply Distress Crackle Paint to a surface that has some “tooth” (something that the paint can grab onto) such as paper, Grungeboard™, chipboard or primed canvas. If using unfinished wood or natural canvas, it is suggested to prime the surface first with gesso or acrylic paint, such as the Ranger Acrylic Paint Dabbers or Tim Holz® Distress Paint.

3. It is ideal to apply medium to thick applications; a medium application will result in smaller cracks. A thicker coat will create larger cracks. A thin application doesn’t work as well because the paint has nothing to crack. Don’t treat the paint like a “regular” acrylic paint-Distress Crackle Paint is self-leveling. If a thicker application is applied, the paint will still level out before it dries and cracks.

4. The optimal way for the paint to crack is to just let it dry and crack on its own. Yes-watching paint dry! If you’re in a rush for the “magic”, once the paint has started to crackle on its own first (this is an IMPORTANT step!) apply cool air, such as from a mini-fan or dry with a Craft Tool from underneath the painted surface.

5. Be sure to completely close the lids on the jars.

6. Once the paint crackles, an option is to highlight the cracks using one of the Distress Ink Pads and the Ranger Ink Blending Tool. The matching color of the Distress Ink will accent the cracks; a darker color of Distress Ink will tone down the paint color as well as accenting the crackle.

7. Images can be stamped on the crackled surface with Ranger Acrylic Paint Dabbers or Tim Holz® Distress Paint as well as Archival™ Ink Stamp Pads. Many rub-ons can also be applied to the crackles surfaces. Don’t be afraid to experiment.

8. Remember, it’s paint…that cracks.