Skip to Main Content
Sign In
Toggle Navigation

Open the Navigation Management window, which can be used to view the full current branch of the menu tree, and edit it.

  • Instagram
  • Facebook

MITRA Forum Question Details

Image Picker for Section 0


  • Lavender spike oil as a solvent/thinnerApproveRejectUn-ApproveSubscribeUn-Unsubscribe
    Question asked 2019-08-21 16:58:09 ... Most recent comment 2019-08-23 19:07:35
    Solvents and Thinners


    I added this onto the tail end of another discussion but probably should have started a new question, so here goes:

    I note that in this discussion it was said that.. using large amounts of an essential oil is detrimental. Is using Lavender spike oil: tube oil paint in 1:1 or even up to 2:1 (max.) OK?

    I.E. what is the dilution limit you can use in an underpainting and still achieve adequate adhesion?

    Recently reading an article from Jerry's artarama re this oil indicates that the vapours are non-toxic and it evaporates about the same speed as OMS, can be mixed with mediums, and a safe alternative to OMS. (no special ventilation requirements). My understanding of the MSDS also gives no concerns unless you swallow it or get it in your eyes. The only drawback seems to be the high price as compared to OMS.

    Many thanks in advance

Answers and Comments

  • EditDeleteModerator Answer

    The following is a good thread to read concerning spike lavender oil as a solvent for painting.

    As to the amount of acceptable solvent, this seems to come up often but it is not possible to give a blanket answer as I have tried to point out many times. The number would be affected by how well is the original paint bound (some brands have far more oil than necessary, others are bound with approximately the CPVC meaning that they would be more affected by dilution) how absorbent is the ground?

    In general, oil paint should not be diluted to watercolor-like washes. The idea that later applications of fatter paint will consolidate the lower layer is sort of misleading. To do this the upper layer must have a degree of additional oil which will be drawn into the lower layer. Paint layering is more complicated than this.

    Finally, I cannot see how to create a hard fast rule on this that would be applicable across paint ranges. Perhaps someone else would like to take a stab at it. I do remember George O stating the following: Mix about one third turpentine to two-thirds linseed oil. Try not to exceed this ratio, but use this as a starting point to mix with your oil colors. This is probably very good advice but even this does not address the influence of different paint brands and their pigment/oil load.

    Brian Baade
    2019-08-23 13:45:12
  • ApproveRejectUn-ApproveUser Comment

    ​Hi Brian,

    many thanks for your response. I think the issue with using this spike oil, as I proposed, is going to be fraught with complications so I think I will look for an alternative.

    Thanks again

    2019-08-23 19:07:35

Page Settings and MetaData:
(Not Shown on the Page)
Page Settings
MetaData for Search Engine Optimization
MITRA Forum Question Details
This page cannot be accessed until you accept the Terms of Use, which can be found here.
Please note that this Terms of Use system uses cookies. If you have cookies disabled you will not be able to accept the agreement. If you delete our cookies you will need to re-accept the Terms of Use.
  • The Department of Art Conservation
  • 303 Old College
  • University of Delaware
  • Newark, DE 19716, USA
  • Phone: 302-831-3489