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Crackling furniture 101

By November 10, 201113 Comments

I love to crackle furniture. I don’t think I will ever get tired of it!!!!!! I often get emails from my readers asking me how I get such rounded, uniform crackle. So thought I would give you my instructions.

A complete stranger contacted me and gave me this table. (Melanie….thank you.)  I’m in the process of decorating my home office….so wanted to crackle it for my space. Perfect to demo for you.

So, first you sand your piece. Or use a liquid deglosser on it. The point is not to take off the stain, but just to knock down the poly coat on the piece.

Then, you will need my FAVORITE crackle products……. they are the only ones I will use….hands down. You can’t convince me to try something else. I am a loyal user of Faux Effects crackle products…..they are the best.


First, I rolled on Aquasize with a whizz roller. You need to let it “smoke” (see photo). It usually takes an hour or so.

After it went clear again, I rolled on another coat of Aquasize right back over it. Let that smoke and go clear.

Here are some points to remember about size (keep in mind I am not an instructor of the products, this is just my observation):

  • The way you apply your size determines the crackle appearance. I prefer a rounded crackle….so I roll or stipple my size on. If you like a weathered looking crackle, you can brush it on. I do not care for that look….I think it looks “countryish”. But that’s my personal preference.
  • For the hard to reach areas on this table, I used a man’s shaving cream brush to stipple size into the crevices. Perfect.
  • The heaviness of your size/number of coats you do will help to determine your crackle “size”. Heavier application = bigger sized cracks.
  • Size will stay wet forever (literally) if not covered with another product.
  • It does dry clear. Except for runs…..but I don’t worry about runs….they will cover with the next layer.

Next, I rolled on the white colored AquaCrackle to this table. The Aquacrackle will go on uneven in spots…’s ok. I usually get chunks in the product and I love that. Ignore them. The chunks chip off to make the awesome areas where the stain shows thru.

The thicker you roll the crackle, the bigger cracks you will get. I didn’t try to roll it into the cracks….I like the cracks to show the stain. And again, I roll—-don’t brush. You can stipple it…..but don’t brush.

Aqua crackle also comes in black and clear. I use black frequently!

After the Aquacrackle dried, I sanded a few edges and used a japan scraper (it has a flat edge) to chip off the big chunks.

Then I stained it so it wasn’t white-white. Cuz’ I am allergic to white. And everything looks better glazed.

Isn’t the bottom of this piece great???

So, my office is shaping up nicely. Especially since my client/turned friend/turned husband’s client/turned scrapbook buddy sold me these zebra chairs. For a killer deal.

Don’t hate me.

And she helped me make the canvas you see hiding in the corner. More on that to come…..

Let me know if you have any crackle questions my friends. It’s all about the products you use. Trust me on this.


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