Posted by: alenegeed | May 27, 2013

3 Gorgeous Patinas for your Copper Designs

I really LOVE working with copper!

When I first started taking metals classes, copper was used as the ‘learning’ metal.  Meaning ‘work with copper to get the feel of metal and what you can accomplish’ . Once past the learning curve, then venture on with Silver and/or Gold.

However, with the incredible price raises for gold and silver, many jewelers have discovered the fun and beauty of working with pure copper…. like me!

So here are 3 of my favorite patinas for copper. have fun experimenting!

cuprinol patina


This was created by accident. When working with silver you must coat the metal with flux before heating. This prevents firescale.
This is not necessary with copper but I was multitasking (not always a good idea when using heat!) and ended up spritzing the copper with cuprinol. (a spray flux).  The result was this mottled effect. I just love it! Just be sure to quench the copper but DONT put it in the pickle!

peanut oil earrings


This one is a little trickier to work with. I brush peanut oil onto the copper Very Thin Coating. Then I heat from BELOW the piece. IF you heat from above you run the risk of setting the oil on fire!  The resulting colors are brownish caramel tones.
Good to remember here, too that some people are allergic to peanuts. Next I want to experiment with other oils to see if I get similar results without the allergy issue.
ammonia and vinegar patina


The most vibrant blues and greens are created with this patina. Coat the copper with vinegar. Pour ammonia into a small container.
Put both the coated copper piece and the UNCOVERED ammonia container inside a larger container. Seal and leave for 24 hours. The longer you leave it the brighter the blue! Note: use fresh ammonia or industrial strength ammonia if you can find it. The process is faster that way!

In conclusion… copper is easy to work with, affordable and provides so many beautiful design opportunities.

Check out all my designs… The silver  too… at Alene’s Adornments


  1. This is gorgeous work. I’m going to try some of these patinas. Thanks!

    • thanks so much. Hope you have fun!


  2. beautiful designs and lovely patinas. how clever yu are.pju

    • thanks Paula. I sure love designing them and seeing the end result as well!

  3. I am just starting to work with copper and really appreciate seeing your fantastic work and all of your hints. Thank you for sharing!

    • thanks Jackie
      I know you are going to love copper. There are so many options available and it blends so nicely with silver, too!

      • I will be trying your cool patinas, but do I need to seal them to keep the colors?

      • Hi Jackie
        I use Sculpt Nouvewu in spray form to seal my patinas. I used 2-4 coats depending upon the type of design. Bracelets or rings require 4 coats to maintain the finish as long as possible. Earrings and pendants can be limited to 1-2 coats. You can also try Krylon, but i dont like it as well personally. The waxes, such as Renaissance Wax only protect for one to 2 wearings, so I dont recommend them

      • Thank you!

  4. Congratulations, wonderful work … I also like working with copper, if you like to look can look at the photos in my blog has some parts photographed as also other works.
    Direct from Brazil.

    • thanks Carlos. YOur work is beautiful.

  5. […] If you liked this post you may enjoy   Three Gorgeous Patinas for your copper. […]

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