Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Re-Frame Part Deux!

I mentioned yesterday that I had a cool project to share that involved old frames and re-used prints from magazines and books.  Mondays are a pretty busy day for us but I was able to upload all of my pics and I'm stealing a minute early this morning to give you the goods!  I had two frames laying around after the move and I just wasn't sure where I wanted to put them.  The first was part of a trio of framed artwork that Olivia's Nana Sherri had picked up for me at a garage sale a few years back.  They are 11 x 14 silver frames with a series of Victorian-era paintings, matted to a near 5 x 7.  They are in great condition and the backs are easily removable so that any type of art or photo can be inserted inside.  Two of the frames actually hold some fantastic artwork that Livy did in preschool.  The other frame was yet to be re-purposed. 

As you can see, the frame is matted to around 5 x 7, however, the inset can be removed to open up to an 8 x 10 which gives us more options to fill the opening.  First things first though, I wanted a dramatic change that was quick and affordable and I decided on... you guessed it!  Paint!  And let me tell you one of the greatest little surprises I stumbled upon at the craft store this weekend:  Mini spray paint cans!  Teensy little cans for those jobs that don't require a ton of surface coverage or maybe just a touch up here or there.  GENIUS!

 Here's a pic of the cute little can! And that's my little artist in the background, hard at work on a colorful craft project of her own.
The color I had on hand was white but the craft store offered a variety of colors to choose from.

 After carefully removing the backing and print from the frame, I used sandpaper to smooth the intricate edges and surface. 

Then I got to work spraying.  Here's what the color looked like after one coat:
And after some drying time (I usually wait about 10 good minutes with spray paint) I added one more coat.  Here's the frame after the second coat:

Hard to see here but I was satisfied when, after the second coat dried, I could no longer see any of the silver poking through.  If you wanted a more distressed look, you could finish after one coat and maybe even add some scuffs with the sand paper. 

Easy to see here is my peu artiste, hard at work on her masterpiece...
Next was finding the perfect print for the frame.  I have so many framed photos of Olivia around the house, as well as photos from my own childhood and my family; this time I wanted something different to finish the project with.  I have some books around the house by Rachel Ashwell, a noted designer and founder of Shabby Chic.  Her books are filled with beautiful pictures and are the inspiration for many projects around my house.  I started to flip through and found a gorgeous photo of a yellow rose and immediately cut it out of the book.  

It fit nicely into the 8 x 10 matted frame and when all was put back together, I must say, I was very happy with the end result.  The bright white edges, the pop of color from the rose... very nice indeed.

Total project cost was $3.00 for the can of paint.  Tres magnifique! 


The second frame I've had for years and I believe it was purchased from Marshall's.  It held 3 photos of various sunsets taken on the beach during many visits to Florida and I wanted a total change from the tropical theme.  

 I have a left over can of a soft, baby blue paint that I thought would be pretty and since I already had the idea of adding it to my mantle (opposite the newly painted white frame with yellow flower) I thought the blue would nicely compliment the teal mirror.  The can was a normal size and for such a small job I decided to just a pour a small amount into one of Livy's paper princess cups.  That way, I only use a small amount and can simply toss the cup when I'm finished.

After removing the backing and pictures, I sanded the frame, very lightly, and decided to quickly prime with the tiny can of white spray paint.  Priming is a great way to seal off the base and limit the number of coats you will need to paint. 

Once the primer dried, I got to work, using a soft-tipped brush and long strokes.  I followed the grain of the wood on the frame and painted the two tall sides using vertical strokes and the top and bottom sides using horizontal strokes.  

Here is the frame after one coat:
Because I primed and because I knew the general look I wanted for the frame, I was happy with one coat.  I wanted a distressed look so I waited for the frame to dry completely and then used sand paper to roughen up the edges.  I used quick motions and concentrated on areas that I figured would distress over time naturally (the edges and corners).

 After sanding, I used a soft cloth to wipe away the dust. 

Then I was ready to put the frame back together.  Wanting to stay within the theme I already had going on the mantle, I found three more pretty pictures from the Rachel Ashwell books that I thought would look nice in the frame. I used a pencil to lightly trace onto the chosen prints and cut about half an inch around each line so that I would have room for tape.
And here's the finished work:

I've had everything on hand so there were no immediate costs.  If I had to guess, the original frame was around $10.00.  The Rachell Ashwell books were purchased at a garage sale for around $5.00.  That, plus the cost of the first frame featured here today totals $18.00.  An under $20.00 investment for a project that down the road, would give me a perfectly wonderful afternoon painting with my daughter (her project featured below) and a huge smile on my face whenever I walk into my house and see my pretty mantle.  Love it!


Books, candles and all things pretty~
And here's my Olivia's finished project of the day, a pink and purple jewelry box, painted and bedazzled to her liking.  Happy Crafting!

1 comment:

Rose Mandarino said...

Love how you sand edges for an aged look!