- Items that will rust - various shapes or one consistent shape like a washer
- Watercolor paper - I used Arches 90lb hot press because I wanted smooth paper
- A spray bottle
- White vinegar
First off you want to do this in a well ventilated area or outside. I chose to be inside the garage but I did have the doors open while I was working on this project. Wear gloves - bleach is kinda harsh stuff. I gathered up a bunch of miscellaneous items that rust. Most of them were already rusty so they were easy to identify. Try to pick items that have a lot of surface that touches the paper. Some of the things in the photo above didn't have good surface to paper contact.
I laid a protective substrate on my garage floor. I used plywood but cardboard would work to. In the spray bottle mix 1 part bleach and 1 part vinegar and start spraying. I wet things down really well and flipped them over so the wet side was touching the paper. Once everything was sprayed, I covered the surface with an old sheet. You can also use a second piece of paper. Then leave it overnight. The next day you should have rust paper. On the second day I re wet everything with the spray bottle mixture and moved the items around a bit to get more even rusting across the paper. I left it for another night. I was happy with the results over the two days and stopped at that point. Now I have a sheet of really beautiful rusted paper that I can use in my art projects.