Wednesday, September 26

DIY painted thrift store frames

Remember all the frames I bought at various DMV-area thrift stores? Well, with J & R's wedding just days away, I managed to get them all ready for the wedding. I'll show the final images after the big day (2 DAYS!!!aoc#4R2Q8 0)(#*), but for now, I'll share the super easy (but time consuming) process for getting these babies ready to roll.

For the wedding, they were going for a rustic, organic feel in terms of material, which meant the ritzy gold look was out. They wanted classic elegance, which is why we went for ornate shapes, but they didn't want the antique-y feel. We decided that a wrought-iron look would be best, which ties into the decor of their venue (think unfinished stone work, exposed beams and pipes, clean lines, modern feel but rustic materials). I decided that black chalkboard paint was the best way to imitate the matte iron look. Rustoleum makes my favorite spray paints, so I stuck with the brand. I like the control of paint cans, and for a wedding you really can't have any drips or errors, but for anything less precious I would have gone with a spray can.

This is a three step process: clean all that thrift store gunk off (I used soap and warm water), prime every nook and cranny, and layer on at least two coats of chalkboard paint. It takes longer than you'd think, due to the frame design and drying time, but it's easy peasy work. Painting is a great option if you have many different styles/shapes of frames, like we did, because it creates that uniformity that makes things look cohesive and less Salvation-Army-rummage-sale (unless that's your thing).

Primer is a must-have people- don't skip this step. Everyone needs a nice clean canvas to work with- it would be like applying a full face of makeup without washing off the day before. Ew. Cakey, gritty mess. Primer does not need to be perfect- just slap it on there in one thin coat.

Make sure you stir the sh*t out of chalkboard paint. Seriously. For another project (coming soon!) I didn't stir well enough and ended up doing 9 (!!!) coats to get full coverage. When prepped correctly, it should only take 2.

Voila! Looks iron-y to me. I think they're such beautiful frames, and I hope they'll get some use after the wedding despite their difficult-to-fit size. Can't wait to show you all how these were used, but since 80% of my readers are family and 100% of my family will be at the wedding, I won't be the spoiler :)

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how you like dem apples?