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A while back, I got the Best Deal in the History of the World. This set of frames was originally $99 at Aaron Brothers, but it was on sale for $8. Basically I saved $91. WHADDUP.
But the frames themselves are too dark and traditional. They didn’t come with glass or backing — they were just nice solid wood frames. And they were just begging for a makeover.
An accent stripe to the rescue!
And here is how I did it:
Painted Stripe Frame Tutorial
- Frames of different sizes (both Michaels and JoAnn are good sources…as are garage sales!)
- White spray primer
- White paint (I used Valspar’s Belle Grove Antique White, and a sample size is only $2.89!)
- 1″ acrylic paint brush
- Frog Tape or other “multi surface” painter’s tape
- Colored paint (I used Country Chic chalk paint in the limited edition color “Refreshed”)
- Gold craft paint
- Acrylic craft paint brushes
I decided to prime the frames before painting them a) so the paint would adhere better to the smooth surface of the frame and b) I didn’t want to have to use twelve coats of paint to cover the black.
It took two coats of primer, but the frames were pretty well covered.
Someone once told me that it’s better to have an ivory wedding dress than a pure white wedding dress. Pure white washes you out, but the ivory adds warmth — but it looks beautifully pure white in photos. See? My dress was totally ivory but looks white.
Any excuse to post wedding photos, right? Love these girls!
I took that same line of thinking for these frames. I didn’t like the industrial white of most spray paint, and I wanted it to feel warm but still fresh. So I added another two coats of antique white.
A small brush worked well for getting in the intricate parts of this frame.
You can see the difference between the pure white of the spray paint on the left and the slightly warmer antique white o the right. I like the antique much more, and you can see it still reads very white in the final photos and in person, as well.
Once I had all the frames painted white, it was time to dress them up a bit!
I used the green frog tape, because it sticks better to uneven surfaces than regular blue painter’s tape.
I measured up from the bottom three inches, and then another two inches above that and taped off a line (everyone uses a hem gauge as a ruler, right?). My stripe is 2″ thick, but of course you could do whatever you’d like!
For the more textured frames, I just tried my best to make a straight line. I knew there would be touch up, but it ended up being less than I expected. Go frog tape!
I received a free sample of Country Chic chalk paint at SNAP recently, and I thought it would be a nice light complement to the white. I used two sizes of acrylic brushes, though I ended up using the smaller one more.
It took two coats of paint to get the coverage I was looking for, but I like how vibrant the mint turned out.
I waited for the paint to dry, and then removed the tape.
I wanted to add an accent strip of gold. My first attempt was using an Elmer’s Painter’s Pen I got at SNAP. I actually really like how it turned out, but it didn’t quite give me the control I wanted, and after I finished one, I realized I wanted a thicker line and it would have taken a really long time. But I’m definitely going to use these pens for other projects in the future!
So I ended up with Martha Stewart “Florentine Gold” craft paint. Using smaller acrylic brushes, I painted a thicker line. I just freehanded it — no taping.
My painting isn’t perfect, but unless you get up close and personal with the frames, it’s hardly noticeable.
My office fireplace isn’t their final place — I think they’ll end up in our guest room at some point, probably with some black and white or low-volume artwork in them.
Overall, I’m really happy with how they turned out!
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