How to: Spray Paint Plastic Animals Gold

I’ve had a lot more time at home this week due to the hurricane. Because of that, I’ve been able to try new recipes and get some serious crafting accomplished.

Side note: I know I keep saying this, but I feel incredibly fortunate that the greatest “misfortunes” we’ve had during the aftermath of the storm is a dent on one of our cars and boredom. It’s the epitome of #firstworldproblems. It’s sort of awkward to maintain a blog that focuses on mostly frivolous things when there are real problems out there. Then again, how self-centered is it to only acknowledge those “real problems” when they’re in my backyard? I guess what I’m saying is, I’m going to keep posting because, hey, maybe we all need a bit of frivolity right now. But I just want everyone to know I’m not sitting in a pile of craft supplies with my eyes closed.

Phewph. That got heavy.

In the name of lightening the mood, I give you a…narwhal-themed craft!

Narwhals have been the unofficial mascot of my blog since I wrote this entirely ridiculous post about them almost exactly two years ago. (OMG, NEW IDEA! Narwhal Day. October 27th on the blog from now until forever. Mark your calendars.)

After I wrote that post, I noticed a bizarre uptick in blog traffic until that post became the single most highly trafficked post on the entire site. This culminated in the post receiving an even weirder number of hits in a single day almost exactly a year ago. (I actually wrote this on Friday, so it was exactly the same day. Spooky.)(That was also the day the narwhal became the official blog mascot.)

The post doesn’t get as much traffic as it used to since I switched to a self-hosted platform (though if I log into the old blog on the WordPress-hosted platform, it’s STILL the only post that gets traffic…people love themselves some narwhals, folks). But the narwhal will always be near and dear to my heart regardless.

It became such a thing for me, that my sister even gave me a narwhal as part of my bridesmaid gift for being in her wedding. (A toy one…but can you imagine if she gave me a REAL narwhal???)

For a long time, he has sat contentedly on my book shelf, guarding my old dictionary and my copy of Jane Austen: The Complete Novels, but lately, I’ve been thinking he could use a bit of pizzazz.

I’ve also become mildly obsessed with the trend of spray painting plastic animals gold for decor. (It’s a real thing, I swear. See here, here, and here for evidence.)

And since I’ve been working from home all week, I’ve actually had time to not only do crafts, but also to take pictures of them in decent light.

I think you can probably guess where I’m going with this.

Without further ado, the easiest craft tutorial ever:

How to Spray Paint Plastic Animals Gold

Plastic narwhal (or, I guess, any other plastic animal you might have lying around…)
Spray primer
Gold spray paint
Cardboard or newspaper for a clean surface
Plastic gloves

1. Start with a clean narwhal on your painting surface. (I used an old piece of cork I had lying around.)

2. In a well-ventilated area, spray with primer. It’s a good idea to use a color lighter than the gold paint. (Note: I skipped the primer on the first go-around and ended up having to wipe off the bubbled gold paint and start over. DON’T SKIP THE PRIMER.) Follow the drying instructions on the primer. (In my case, a few hours was enough to wait.)

3. Also in a well-ventilated area, spray with gold spray paint. I did a couple of coats, and I had to spray the top and bottom separately, so all together it took about 4 spray sessions. (It’s like a really exaggerated spray tan for you animal.) Allow to dry completely (about 24 hours).

That’s it! How does he look, you ask? Check out this handsome little devil:

Pretty cute, huh? I’ve got a sizable crush on him.

I have a few other crafts I was able to get accomplished while being stuck inside after Sandy, so stay tuned all this week for more.
Thanks for reading one of my blog’s most popular posts! Don’t miss my other DIYs and how-tos here. Welcome to Stop Me if You’ve Heard This One!

5 thoughts on “How to: Spray Paint Plastic Animals Gold

  1. I just read your narwhal post – hilarious! I actually didn’t even know these animals exist… if I ever saw one I probably would have thought it was a made up animal. So weird, and hilarious, and awkward-looking! I’m actually in love with your spray-painted narwhal, and I’m considering doing the same for my bookshelf. You get a gold star for your gold narwhal!!

  2. I have that same narwhal! My boyfriend gave it to me for my birthday when he needed an extra item to get free shipping. Mine is still in the case as I consider it a collector’s item.

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