We use patina finishes on our metal and zinc products as a color option but what exactly is patina you ask? The best way to explain it is that it’s a “process.” Just like things age over time, a patina finish put on metal/steel or zinc processes to bring out the raw metal textures, color and enhances the current metal look. Patina is a tarnish produced by chemical processes that forms on the surface of many types of metals. When exposed to the elements, a coating of various chemical compounds, such as oxides and carbonates form on the surface. Using this process, it creates a weathered appearance on the metal or zinc which will continue to change over time.

So instead of having a solid painted product, you can choose the patina option where you keep that industrial/metal look over time while still attempting to match your current home decor.

What is patina?
Sealing Patina

Do you seal the patina since it’s technically still raw metal?

Yes. We seal each product after creating the patina process to preserve the color over time. Sealing it also brings out the color and tones of the metal even more while making the color a tad bit darker than when it only has the patina on it.

Does the color continue to change?

Yes it can. Patina is a constant aging process even after it’s sealed. Weather and environmental elements can affect it as well by even causing it to rust. Patina is in part a form of rust and aging. It also can totally depend on the metal itself and how it takes the color and continues to take the color over time.

Galvanized Steel Patina Colors

These patina sample colors are featured on our tables with galvanized steel top coffee tables and side tables. This is a thicker metal than zinc and the colors are different on this metal versus the zinc metal material.

Do we seal the patina on this metal too?
We sure do. Sealing the metal material helps contain the patina color and keeps the patina from constantly rusting (aging) the metal.

And remember, with patina the color can always vary even from the current photos shown depending on how the metal takes the color process.

Galvanized Patina Metal

Zinc Material

What’s the overall look and feel of the zinc material?

Zinc is a form of natural metal that has a modern and/or industrial look to it. Just like steel, zinc can show irregularities and flaws in the metal whether you choose the regular zinc or patina color options (which is the unique and beautiful thing about it!).

Can I choose from patina options to put on your zinc products?

You sure can. Both metals are a bit different but require the same process that ages and weathers over time to create that perfect “patina” look.

What colors do you offer?

We currently offer these colors for our steel products: antique bronze, copper and grey steel. For the zinc products we currently offer: regular zinc, black betty, copper and grey steel.  If you’re looking for a certain color and want the patina look, feel free to send us an email with your questions and color sample you’ve got your eye on.

Does every “patina” piece come out the exact same?

We get this question a lot and the answer is – no but that’s the beauty of the patina look. Metal is like wood where it may take the color different in some areas than others. We do our best to make it as even as possible but there are some areas that may have more color than other spots. So no product is exactly the same.

Zinc Patina Color Options

What about the natural patina process?

If you want a zinc piece to naturally patina on it’s own then we suggest to not apply a sealer it so it will age by itself over time. Here’s an example on the right where this piece sat outdoors for one year. The top was not sealed and you can see how it naturally acquired it’s own patina color.

Please note, without a sealer on the zinc it is prone show acidic spots due to food/drinks, coffee rings and naturally acquired spots due to use. Learn more here.

Southern Sunshine - Zinc Products