Making A Corrugated Metal Roof: Part 2

 Patrick "helping" out.

This morning I woke up with an itchy throat, so I was sure I wasn't going to have time to work on the roof.  I was wrong.  Buahaha, the call of the unfinished project overpowers any illness!

Anyway, the roof was dry after spackling.  I was asked by a fellow blogger (Audra at Honey I Shrunk the House!) why I spackle in the first place and not just paint it.  Well, you definitely could just paint the cardboard (I suggest sealing first so it doesn't absorb too much paint), but spackling gives it a crumbling effect after the aging process.  If you're going for a new metal roof look, just seal and paint.

First, I painted the roof Raw Umber by Americana acrylic paint, not worrying too much about getting full coverage as most of it would be sanded down.  This is what it looks after intense sanding with an extra-fine grit sandpaper:

My tips for sanding this particular roof is to focus the heavier sanding on the bottom portions of the panels and lightly sand toward the top.  This gives the panels more depth, and in real life, metal roofs don't age uniformly.  I also mostly sanded down the tops of the corrugated parts and less so within the grooves.  Again, for more depth.

After sanding, vacuum and vacuum some more.  Also, wear a mask while sanding.  You do NOT want to breathe this stuff in.  Don't worry, no animals were allowed near the project during sanding and before clean-up.

I liked the result, and you could just leave it at that, but I wanted my roof to look SUPER aged.  So the next step was to add stain (I used Minwax Wood Finish in English Chestnut).  I took a Q-tip, soaked it in the stain, and pressed against certain portions of the TOPS of the panels.  This was to make the stain slide through the grooves.  Add more stain in certain area to make it appear natural, but be careful to make sure the stain doesn't run too far and onto your floor or project.  This was the effect:

The stain gives the appearance of rust spots which are a part of almost every aged metal roof.  You may think I'm done, but oh no.  The next (and final step) will be to add bits of "debris" and greenery.

Disclaimer:  These pictures are probably completely out-of-focus because of my DayQuil induced state.


  1. It's already amazingly realistic! Too bad I don't immediately have a project to try this out on!

  2. Hi Maria, this is a great tutorial! It always surprises me how simple cardboard can be transformed by paint into something so realistic!
    By the way, did you study art therapy, for that's my background too. Thanks to this I am used to working with lots of materials and techniques. Very handy indeed when you're a minaturist :-)
    Hope to see more of your work!
    Greetings from Liduina.

  3. This looks great Maria! Can't wait to see the next and final step, but it will be great (even greater) I'm sure

  4. WOW! That is already looking great! I dont think I would be that patient to do that!

  5. Hello Maria,
    It is looking fantastic. I am very impressed. The results are wonderful.

  6. Wow, this is really cool, Maria! I just went on a cruise in November, and at one stop, our ship was overlooking a roof that looked a lot like this - the greenery and debris will take it to the next level:)

  7. Un fantastico trabajo, me encanta el resultado.
    besitos ascension

  8. fantastico!!!!

  9. Hi Maria, I have just followed your comment back to your blog. Just what I like to see - someone who is artistic and frugal! I love the challenge of creating things for next to nothing except imagination and effort.... plus possibility an on line tutorial from a generously-minded miniaturist! Thank you.
    Regards Janine

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