Dust, fluff, grunge, detritus etc

I want to be able to create THICK dust and old congealed cobwebs on the surfaces of a composition - similar to the image below (not the best example but hopefully you will see what I mean).

This will be incidental the main subject of the composition so doesn’t need to be ridiculously detailed. It should look right however.

So far I have considered trying particle systems which I imagine might work well. Also wondered whether some form of smoke simulation might work. I want the stuff to sit above the surface.

Any help and suggestions gratefully received

For spider webs you can check these addons: Spider Webs (free), Cobweb ($), Spider Web Generator ($).
Or check this tutorial for creating them via texture alphas: How to Make Spider Webs in Blender

For the other elements I also think particles should work along with procedural textures.

Thanks for your reply. Since posting,I have taken a look at Cobweb and it looks really good.
I am not sure I understand your recommendations re particles. I don’t really understand how to do procedural textures in blender. I may have to do some research in that area. Does it involve coding? I have some experience of coding but may be a little rusty now.

You can use particles for dusty lumps. (Weight paint to control density) You can do the same for web as well. Check this file for example: dusty_window.blend (2.0 MB)

No, it doesn’t. Take a look at this for a brief example: How to create rust procedurally?
And check this for more in depth tutorials about procedural textures: Beginners Guide to Cycles Nodes, The Procedural Way

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You may be able to pick apart this method as well for the cobwebs. It is older but still valid.

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