Krylon to finish copper
by Bonnie jo Kyles
Does Krylon matte finish work well to protect copper from tarnishing or do you recommend some other finish? Does it work to spray the coating on an entire piece that has semiprecious gemstones such as sodalite or aventurine? I've made some pendants that I don't want to tarnish.
I think the Krylon would work just fine for pendants. I know quite a few people who use it and are happy with the results. I prefer Permalac, but that's just my personal choice. I would not recommend spraying your gemstones, especially with a matte finish. A matte finish on metal gives more of a rustic or brushed look and since most gemstones are highly polished, a matte finish would ruin that. I use both a shiny finish and a matte finish lacquer depending upon the look I want the piece to have. I prefer a matte finish on the colored patinas. To me shiny just doesn't look quite right! :)
If you can't find your lacquer in a liquid form, try spraying some into a plastic bowl with super slick sides. Keep the nozzle close to the plastic bottom so you have more of a solid spray and not the tiny spray mist of lacquer which could dry out quickly. Then, using a soft natural bristle brush, like an eye-makeup brush, apply the lacquer only where you want it. A Q-tip or cotton swab would probably work well also.
I recommend also that you dip your piece in Acetone (fingernail polish remover) first to remove any oils, etc. on the metal's surface that could interfere with the lacquer adhering properly. It will not harm patinas, but could damage porous gemstones like pearls, turquoise and corals. If there's any doubt, simply dab the acetone on the metal using a cotton swab.