Thrift store picture frame makeover


If you could see my dining table right now you might wonder if a small explosion had gone off on top of my table!

I’ve been transferring photos like a mad woman after I posted my How-to-guide: Transfer photos to canvas last week. Now the entire surface of my table is covered with paint brushes, gel medium, piles of half finished canvases and scrap pieces of cut out images. Complete and utter chaos!

I hope you too can relate to my situation in one way or another. I find that when I am feeling creative and I have too many projects on the go, my workspace becomes a disaster zone. This is something that I need to work on for my own and my family’s sanity.

Does your workspace also get a little out of control when you are working on a project?



This chunky wooden picture frame is one of my recent finds while out on a shopping trip with my Mom at a Salvation Army thrift store here in town. This frame was a steal at only $3.99!

I almost missed seeing it underneath a pile of old wire frames at the back corner of the store. It is a good thing that it caught my eye though because it is really a solid frame and it would have cost me a pretty penny to buy a frame of this size at a home decor store.




I decided to paint this frame with a mixture of medium gray craft paint and white gesso. I have used paint mixed with gesso for my photo transfer projects in the past, but I really became inspired to try painting furniture and other pieces with it after visiting Rosemary over at her blog Villabarnes.



If you haven’t ever been over to meet Rosemary, then you are definitely missing out!  She transforms vintage pieces of furniture, picture frames and other accessories with paint and gesso giving them an old world finish that looks like they came directly from Paris.


I hope you enjoy all of the “eye candy” while visiting her blog!




I can tell you after trying out this paint and gesso mixture on my frame that it gives wood a gorgeous chalky finish that closely resembles Annie Sloan Chalk Paint. I haven’t yet had a chance to try out ASCP, but I think this finish could be a close second. It goes on so smoothly without having to prime and after a light sanding with fine grit sand paper, it makes wood look and feel velvety smooth.

For my frame, I decided to glaze it with watered down dark brown and gray craft paint to give the moulding a bit more depth. After removing the excess glaze, I gave it a couple of coats of my favorite furniture wax, buffing in between coats. The wax really gave my frame a beautiful sheen.



The iron french door knocker art above is another one of my photo transfer creations.

I found this gorgeous image on The Graphics Fairy’s blog. Seriously, what would we do without The Graphics Fairy and her large collection of free images? I am so glad that she takes time out of her day to share these with us!

My printed door knocker image was transferred onto a textured canvas that I found at the art supply store. As you can see it transferred beautifully as a nice clear image.






I really love the way my “new” piece of art turned out!


What do you think?




In case you were wondering about the accessories in this vignette,  the a to z book ends were purchased at Homesense (Home Goods) last year and the sea rocks below are from my trip to visit my relatives in Barbados.

I like to keep my special mementos on display to remind me of my past travels.




My little white flowers were purchased at our local Safeway grocery store yesterday. They are really putting me in the mood for spring.

Have a super day!






 Parties I’ve Linked Up To:

  It’s a Hodge Podge Life – It’s a Hodge Podge Friday ~ Creations Corner – Friday Link Party ~ The French Country Cottage – Feathered Nest Friday  ~ The Craftionary – Friday Fun Party  ~ Funky Junk Interiors – Sat Nite Special ~ Be Different Act Normal – Show and Tell SaturdayCraft Envy – Saturday SpotlightThe Romantic Home – Show and Tell Friday ~ The Graphics Fairy – Brag Monday ~ A Bowl Full of Lemons – One Project at a Time ~ Domestically Speaking – 117TH Power of Paint Party ~ Savvy Southern Style – Wow Us Wednesdays ~ The Shady Porch – Rock N’ Share ~ The Thrifty Home ~ 129th Penny Pinching Party ~ The Trendy Treehouse – Create and Share ~ Not Just a Housewife – Show Me Whatcha Got Tuesdays ~ Coastal Charm – Nifty Thrifty TuesdayEmbracing Change – Creative Inspirations Linky Party ~ The Brambleberry Cottage – Time Travel Thursday ~ Somewhat Simple – Strut Your Stuff Link Party ~




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  1. Dessa

    If one cannot find such a chunky, beautiful frame for cheap, go to Goodwill or a local thrift store on half price day. Choose 2 frames, one slightly smaller than the other. See if the smaller one fits inside the larger one to form a chunky frame. If there is a little gap, I fill in with free wallpaper samples I get for free when I ask for discontinued sample books at Sherwin Williams. WARNING: If you plan to leave the glass in the larger frame, put the picture of your choice in the smaller one before hot glueing the smaller frame onto the larger one.

    If the two frames fit well enough, you can just remove all glass and pictures, hot glue the frames together, then put your picture into the smaller frame.

    Happy Chunking!

  2. Carrie

    Hi Dessa,

    Great tips! Thanks for stopping by HOD!

  3. Stacey

    Love the frame – great find! What would we do without thrift stores! Thanks for coming by to link up – please come back this Thursday as well !
    Stacey of Embracing Change

    1. Carrie

      Thanks Stacey for taking the time to stop by.

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