Make Your Own Rust Tutorial

I have come to the conclusion that I have some sort of magnetic juice running through my veins. That’s right. It’s the only way I can make sense of my rust loving tendencies and the way I am just drawn to it… I mean like, rip me out of my car, arms wrapped tightly around these rusty ‘ol tractor seats! I try to walk away and the next one sucks me in! It’s like an uncontrollable roll down the long line of rusty goodness…

Rusty Old Tractor Seats

It’s like it finds me! Fe2O3! Yup, I went all Bill Nye on ya! That’s the chemical compound for iron oxide which we southern gals call rust! Not only do I think it’s beautiful, I know some people say I’m crazy, but it tells a story! It’s the history of the piece. How many garages and old barns do you think it took to find all of these rusty old wrenches? And how many grandpas used ’em to fix their ’54 pickup? (I guess you would use a wrench for that?!)

Rusty Tools

Rusty Tools

And these rusty wheels?? I called them wagon wheels, but actually I think they are wheel barrow wheels. How many fields did these wheels grace? Filled with berries, beans, potatoes?? If only old junk could talk.

Rusty Wagon Wheels

Well, this got the wheels in my head turning,. You like how I did that? Wheels? (Nice segway, Candace!) While I L.O.V.E. old authentic rust, I am also a creator, and imagineer, if you will. And sometimes you just can’t find what you want with the rusty patina you are looking for. So what’s a girl to do? Make it!

I did some research and tried several different recipes, but came up with this conglomeration that I found worked best for me.

Here’s what you’ll need:

How Do I Make Metal Rust?

¼ Cup White Vinegar
2 Cups Hydrogen Peroxide
2 Tbs. Salt

 So what I needed were some rusty ‘s’ hooks that I could use for a display I was making for the shop. I wanted something to hold all of my old kitchen utensils. So I hit the local hardware store and snagged a bag of ‘s’ hooks and into the white vinegar bath they went! I used an old plastic jar to soak my hooks. And to be honest, the longer you leave them soaking, the better. The vinegar will help tear away the outer coating on the metal, somewhat etching it. This will allow the salt and peroxide to work their magic.

How to Make Rust

I let my hooks soak for, oh gosh, let’s see… I went inside, checked some emails, made lunch, ate lunch, did the dishes, took a hot bath. Ha ha! Who am I kidding, I didn’t take a hot bath! But I did get a lot done! They probably soaked for a couple hours. Then I poured the vinegar off and, in the same container, poured in the salt and peroxide. I watched… And watched… Expecting it to change right before my eyes. Have you ever watched paint dry? Uh. It aint happenin’. So, again, inside I went. It was a hot day. Which I have learned speeds up the process of rusting. My plan was to go check on them in about an hour.

Well, we all know how that goes. I got busy doing oh-about-26 other things and about 4 hours later went outside to find this…

DIY Rust Tutorial


 Wooo hooo! Rust crust! It worked! I could wait to see what my little hooks looked like donning their new rusty wardrobe. I gave the jar a little swish… and my little hooks peeked their heads through. As if you say, “Look at me, mommy!”

Step by Step Tutorial for Making Rust

Step by Step Tutorial for Making Rust

Awesome sauce! I fished ’em all out and spread them out on a couple paper towels to dry. The sun will rust them even further. But be careful with all that rust juice. You get that on your clothes and it aint coming out. (I may or may not have ruined a tee-shirt!) I was excited! It was worth it!

DIY Rust


So, do you have magnetic juice running through your veins too? Or is this something I should see a doctor about? I have to admit I am not drawn nearly as much to the hooks on the left.  It’s something about that chippy rust. Perhaps I have a rare form of magnetic juice?! I think I’ll have to do more research to figure out exactly why I love RUST so much!!

DIY Rust Before and After!


If you make something using this recipe, let me know!! It may be the rust fix I need for the day! (wink) I’d love to feature your rusty project here at Rusted Roots!!

Until next time, let us remember..

Beauty Stems from Rusted Roots

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  1. Candace, congrats on the new blog. I am so excited and I am so happy you shared your “rust” recipe.

    • Candace says:

      Oh, good, Debi!! If you make something with the rust recipe, you’ll have to send me a pic!! I love seeing fun rusty creations!! Thanks for stopping by!!

  2. Thanks Candace, they look great, can’t wait to give it a try!

    • Yay, Vee Vee!! You are more than welcome!! I can’t wait to rust more stuff!! If you try it out, shoot me a pic of your project. I’d love to see it!! Have a great week! 🙂

  3. Kristi Stewart says:

    Candace – what type of “s” hooks did you start with? zinc, plated, etc… just want to make sure i pick up the correct materials to make this rusty process work as quickly as it did for you.


    • Oh, gosh, Kristi!! I wish I knew. I have no idea!! I should have checked the label. They were kinda heavy, if that means anything to you. Ha ha!! And they were fairly cheap. I’m sorry I’m not more help!! I’ll pay attention next tiime… promise!!

  4. How much salt and peroxide?

    • Candace says:

      Hi Chris! The recipe is in the blog post below the picture of the ingredients! Hope that helps! 🙂

  5. How much salt and peroxide?

  6. No! Dont seem to find the amount of ingred. here .
    Would you please post.

  7. I am trying to rust some corrugated tin. What can I use to do this? Read a post on Pinterest that used peroxide and salt, did not work. Do you have suggestions?

  8. Jaime Hockley says:

    Working on this now!! Love the rusted look!

  9. It reads:
    ¼ Cup White Vinegar
    2 Cups Hydrogen Peroxide
    2 Tbs. Salt


  10. Hillary Brown says:

    I love your choice of words! Awesome.

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