How to: Plasti-Kote Crackle

Updated June 29, 2018

Applying a crackle finish to wooden furniture or frames gives the appearance of tiny cracks in your project so they have a natural aged look. Plasti-Kote crackle is a two-part process with a base coat and a top coat. Each of the two repels each other when the top coat is sprayed on so the two do not bond but form cracks in the finish. You can achieve small, medium or larges cracks in your project when the finish is applied correctly.

Pour isopropyl alcohol on paper towels. Clean the piece that you want to apply a crackle finish to by rubbing the paper towels on the surface to remove any dust or debris. Let the alcohol dissipate for about 10 minutes.

Place masking tape on any edges of areas of your project that you do not want crackled. Remove cushions from furniture or mask them off next to the wood.

Spray your project with canned spray primer. Spray from a distance of about 1 foot away from the surface. Use long strokes in the direction of the wood grain until the project is covered. Allow the primer to dry according to the package directions.

Apply your base coat of Plasti-Kote crackle on the project at a distance of 1 foot following the direction of the wood grain. Let this coat dry only until it is tacky to the touch.

Hold a spray can of crackle top coat about 6 to 8 inches from the project. Spray a light coat of Plasti-Kote top coat crackle on the base coat for small crackles. Spray a medium coat of Plasti-Kote for medium-sized crackles and a heavy coat for large crackles. Allow the crackle coating to dry.


Crackle finish can be applied to ceramics also by following the same instructions, but with no need to spray coats in a particular direction. Use spray paints, primers and crackle finishes in a well-ventilated area, preferably outdoors.

Things You'll Need

  • Isopropyl alcohol
  • Paper towels
  • Masking tape
  • Spray primer
  • Paintbrush
  • Base paint
  • Plasti-Kote Crackle
  • Top coat
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About the Author

Mary Lougee has been writing for over 10 years. She holds a Bachelor's Degree with a major in Management and a double minor in accounting and computer science. She loves writing about careers for busy families as well as family oriented planning, meals and activities for all ages.