Distressed Bird Plaque

Brenda Marks demonstrates her process for distressing her brass bird plaque.


Materials and Tools:

brass foil/shim
steel wool pad
dry embossing tool
wax paper
Patina-It (metal distressing fluid)
decorator chalk or colored pencils
3-1/2" x 4-1/2" plaque
2" x 3" plaque
acrylic paint
gel medium
coffee cup sleeve dot stencil
cotton swab
Crafter's Pick The Ultimate glue
handheld cordless drill
large jump rings
table salt


1. Rough up the brass foil by sanding it in different directions.



2. Find a photo of a bird for the design or draw your own on paper.

3. Place the bird design over the sanded brass. Place a piece of wax paper over the bird design. Emboss the outline and details onto the brass with a dry embossing tool.

4. Cut the bird out of the metal with scissors.



5. Sprinkle table salt onto the metal bird to help the patina stick to the metal.

6. Apply the patina to the metal using a cotton swab.

7. When the bird has the desired aged look, seal it with matte gel medium. Let dry.



8. Add color to the raised areas of the bird with colored pencils. Seal again and let dry.

9. Paint the larger 3-1/2" x 4-1/2" wood plaque with blue acrylic paint.



10. Paint the smaller 2" x 3" wood plaque with a background of light yellow green paint. Then apply green and blue paint to the plaque and remove the wet paint with a paper towel to create depth. Allow to dry.



11. Add dots to the larger plaque using a paper coffee cup holder (or similar object) as a stencil. Paint the dots with blue paint and a brush. Allow to dry.

12. Glue the bird onto the smaller plaque, bending the tail of the bird around to the back. Glue the small plaque onto the larger plaque.



13. Drill holes in the top corners of the large plaque using a power drill.



14. Place a jump ring through each drilled hole and attach a chain to the jump rings to hang the distressed bird plaque. Close the jump rings using your fingers.

Keep Reading

Next Up

Distressed and Antiqued Kitchen Cabinets

Add cottage-style charm to white painted cabinets by distressing then applying antiquing glaze. This quick and easy project will give builder basic cabinets a custom look in no time.

Kids' Craft: Bird Seed Christmas Ornaments

For the holidays, don't just decorate the Christmas tree inside your house. Make these birdseed ornaments to add color to bare winter trees and treat hungry feathered friends to a snack. This is a great project for kids and to give as gifts to your favorite nature lovers.

How to Build a Wood and Metal Patio Fence

Wooden posts are combined with metal railings to create a decorative fence for a raised patio.

Landscape Design Supplies and Materials

How to choose the best landscape design supplies and materials for your next residential landscaping project

Distressed Kitchen Cabinets

Get all the info you need on distressed kitchen cabinets, and create a welcoming and casually chic design in your kitchen.


Shop This Look

Found a living space you love in HGTV's Photo Library? Get the look in your own home with products from Wayfair.

Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss HGTV in your favorite social media feeds.