We receive many projects shares via our firstname.lastname@example.org email, and we love them all! Recently, a gorgeous project with our Metal Effects was sent to us. In fact, here’s the initial e-mail:
I wanted to share photos of the bus conversion we did using the copper Metal Effects paint — green patina on the outside and pure copper on the inside. Our bus is used as a traveling vintage shop, and we get so many great compliments on the paint!
The email from Lindsay of Wanderlust Vintage Market in Minnesota intrigued us and when we saw the images, we knew we had to share it with you! Interested? We’ll let Lindsay share her story.
My business partner, Aaron, and I were both in the publishing industry. After learning that we were being laid off from our jobs due to an acquisition, we started brainstorming ideas for a new business. We wanted to do something fun and different that would take advantage of our shared interest in vintage and hand-crafted items. After researching the industry, we decided to do a spin on a traditional antique shop by running it out of a converted school bus and offering high quality antique furniture at affordable prices. Since we both enjoy painting, refinishing, and creating, we would rehab anything that needed a facelift in bold and interesting ways and supplement the furniture with our own, unique home decor items.
The first order of business to get up and running was to figure out how we wanted the bus to look. We knew this would be extremely important to our brand and to generating interest in our shop. Our first thought was to cover the ceiling of the bus in stamped tin, but in an effort to keep costs low, we started looking around for paint that would help us achieve a similar effect without as big an investment. Once we discovered Modern Masters products, the entire vision for the bus came together: wood grain on the sides, copper with green patina on the roof and outer fixtures, straight copper on the inside. The fact that the Metal Effects had actual copper in it that would oxidize when exposed to the elements was a huge plus for us. We wanted the outside of the bus to continue to develop a natural patina over time.
We bought a bus from an ad on Craigslist and removed all of the seats (not fun or easy), removed all the decals, and took off the stop sign.
We used a half-empty can of $8 stain and a wood-graining tool to create the wood effect on the sides of the bus.
We then primed the roof of the bus, the metal strips on the sides, the hood, bumper, grill, and other fixtures with the Metal Effects Primer. Honestly, the process of applying the primer to all of the necessary areas seemed never-ending, but in reality took about 12 hours and three people. The whole time we were applying the primer, we were just dying to see the copper. Delivery of the Metal Effects Reactive Copper Metallic Paint happened to be behind the Metal Effects Primer by a day or so. We had started applying primer to the interior of the bus when the copper showed up. We literally dropped what we were doing to break out the oxidizing copper paint and get it on the roof. It was a very hot day in the summer, and the first coat dried really quickly. We applied the second coat with Aaron rolling it out while I followed behind with a spray bottle of the Green Patina Aging Solution. We achieved a light patina on the roof, partly because of rapid drying due to the heat and partly due to my lack of ability to maneuver around on a hot metal roof 13 feet in the air.
When we got to the hood of the bus and the bumpers, we decided to really soak them with the patina solution. This resulted in an awesome drippy effect, which was perfect for us, since we wanted it to look like it had naturally oxidized due to rain. Comparing the during and after photos of the front of the bus, you can even see how the patina has continued to develop after a couple months of exposure.
We are very happy with how the bus turned out. It’s the perfect complement to our vintage shop on wheels, and we hear nothing but fantastic things from all of our customers. All told, we completely transformed the bus over about eight 12-hour days in June.
Lindsay and Aaron have used leftover Metal Effects, as well as other patinas, for some of their retail pieces, too. Seriously – doesn’t this traveling shop look and sound AMAZING? Such a brilliant idea. We’d visit every day! Wanderlust Vintage Market has also opened up a physical location that doubles as an additional retail space and workshop studio at 349 13th Avenue NE, in Minneapolis, MN. To keep up with all their adventures, follow them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Many thanks to both Lindsay and Aaron for sharing their beautiful bus project with us. We hope you’ve enjoyed it immensely as well!
Many of the gorgeous PROJECT images, where noted, were used with permission from Jennifer Liv Photography.