Gilders Paste is a popular metallic wax based rub. It's used to add a touch of color to wood, metal, polymer clay, ceramic and even leather!  See the first two links below for metal and leather uses. 

It does dry out and you can revive it with solvents such mineral spirits, paint thinners and turpentine. Those are toxic chemicals which need to be used carefully. An alternative I found was to use baby oil - sparingly - to rejuvenate it. See my tutorial here. It works for porous material like wood which absorbs the oil. It will be less successful for hard, non-porous surfaces like metal as the oil is not volatile. So solvents will be best.

The other thing about Gilders Paste is the cost. What is a budget crafter to do?  Make your own gilding wax rub!  Two crafters tackled the problem coming up with their own versions. They both made their DIY rubs for paper use. One will have to experiment to see if these will work on metal. 

The first tutorial and recipe is by Crafting on a Budget. I cannot embed the tutorial here. So hop over to Youtube to see it. Her full list of ingredients, supplies and tools including the metal tins, is in the video description. The main ingredient used is beeswax which has to be melted with the other ingredients mixed in. 

The basic recipe is 6 teaspoons mineral oil, 1/2 cup beeswax, 2 tablespoons of clear Elmer's glue, and 4 teaspoons of a combination of Pearlex (mica) powder to get the hue she wanted. You can see from her video that trial and error is required to get just the right color intensity needed. The mineral oil acts a lubricant and the glue helps bind things together. 

The second video is by Noit Art has just two ingredients - coconut oil and oil pastel sticks. Coconut oil is a saturated fat so it is solid at room temperature. Just like the beeswax used in the previous video, the coconut oil has to be melted and mixed well with the chopped up pieces of oil pastels. She probably chose oil pastels because these will not cure unlike oil paint and thus remain always workable. You do have to apply a fixative to the finished work to "set" the oil pastel and coconut oil mix.

Not interested in making your own?  You can get Gilder's Paste and other brands in many colors here and here.

Before You Go :

jewelry making supplies


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Original Post by THE BEADING GEM