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Do you have a miniature Greek pillar or a bust of George Washington that needs something extra? Do you want to be creative without putting a lot of effort into it? Try "weathering" it. You can make a plaster object look like it’s been sitting outside for one hundred years, even though you just bought it last month and "weathered" it in one afternoon.

What you’ll need:

Plaster: You can find pre-made plaster objects for sale at craft stores. Garden Ridge has a huge selection of larger size plaster.
Paint: You’ll need some inexpensive acrylic paints.
Large and small brushes: Mostly large.
Sand paper or scouring pad
Mixing bowls (not used for food)
Newspaper to protect the floor

Select earth tones when buying paint. A couple of browns and a couple of greens. Try to use greens that are not too bright. Olive is good. However, bright green can be toned down with a little patience using plenty of brown.

You’ll want to water down some brown paint, then add a little green. You don’t want a thick mixture; it needs to be very thin, because you’ll paint in layers until you get the "age" you’re looking for. Plaster is very porous and will soak up thin layers very well. If you paint on too thickly, you may go overboard and have too dark a color. The aged look comes across with several thin layers.

Once a piece has been completely painted, you can go over any indentations or crevices with a paint mixture containing a little more green than brown pigment. Be creative and use your own judgment with the tint. You are aiming at creating an "algae’d" look in those areas. Of course, you could "algae" the entire object if you like! It’s entirely up to you.

If you feel that you have overdone it with a too-thick paint mixture, or an algae that’s a little too green, use the sand paper or scouring pad to rub it off. Plaster is easy to sand.

Remember to keep the layers thin. That way you can easily make changes to the paint or sand off work you’ve done without too much effort.