Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Plastic Picture Frame Upgrade

We all know how expensive picture frames can be, so when I found these $11.99 a piece black plastic ones with white mattes included I thought I'd hit the jackpot: 
Unfortunately when I got them home and was about to hang them, I realized that no matter what I put inside them, they still looked like cheap, plastic frames.  Off to the hardware store and craft store I went and purchased what I would need to make them into something pretty!  Here's what I used: 

First, remove the glass, mattes and anything else inside the frame(s) and cover your work surface with newspaper.  

Now cover the plastic frame with at least one coat of your paint.  I highly recommend you take this part of the project outside! One looked sufficient but I did two, just to be sure!  

I found that the paint dried really fast so after waiting about 20 minutes, I mixed up the glaze.  The directions said to use 1:1 glaze to water and no more than 35% acrylic paint so that's what I did.  So, mix up your glaze, grab a brush (I used a foam brush) and a rag.  First you brush on an even coat of glaze (and please don't mind the apples holding down the paper in the picture, you work with what you've got!): 

Next, you take your rag and wipe off most of the glaze leaving the amount you desire to achieve the look you want.  This is what my first try looked like:

I was really happy with it, although the picture doesn't really do it justice.  But I did want a different look so I applied one more coat of glaze.  This is totally personal preference so add as many or as few coats as you like!  Mind you, I'm not sure how to "go back" so if you're not sure you want it darker, best to leave well enough alone!

One little reminder is to make sure you are changing up your rag ever few times you use it so that you are wiping the glaze with a clean surface.  If you let the glaze build up on the rag, it doesn't do such a great job of pulling the glaze off.

Here's what the final product looks like, hanging on my daughter's wall with scrapbook paper inside:

I'm really happy with them and also really excited to use the glazing technique again.  I love how it looks kind of like wood, kind of antiqued, kind of like metal.  Sort of "je ne sais quoi" I suppose!  I'm especially looking forward to glazing something with texture (to accentuate the piece, not cover it up like I did) as in the inspiration for my project found here.

Here's some more pictures...

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