Tuesday, March 1, 2011

fun with frames

another one of those posts that never quite got out of my brain was about my little picture frame painting obsession that i've developed. i was reminded that i never clarified this project when a friend, having seen one of my posts, asked for some pointers.

it all started christmas of 2009 when i had the boys paint pictures to give to a family friend as a gift. because i was trying to save money on the gift, hence the idea of giving original artwork from the boys in the first place, inspired by better after, where people are constantly breathing new life into old, beat up items by painting them, i dug out some old, odd shaped, over sized frames i had in my craft/crap room and painted them black with some craft acrylic paint i had from another project. using the glass pane as a template, i then cut out the part of the boy's painting that i liked the best, and framed it. ta da! super cool, sentimental, thrifty project. (pretend i took a picture of the finished project.)

i next turned my crafty thoughts towards these embroidered towels that tim's mom had given us for our wedding shower, over six years ago.

tim's great grandmother had embroidered them, and while i really liked them, they had sat in a box, unsure of how to display them. i thought it would be cute to frame them, but since i didn't really have anywhere to hang them once completed, i left them sit in their box. (i don't like doing projects just for the sake of doing a project. it has to have a use or a purpose. and generally, be thrifty.)

then the whole kitchen project happened and i had this weird blank space open over the new stove, with that odd little hole in the wall that needed to be covered up.

and since tim's mom had given me a whole box of old frames over the summer because she knows i like to hoard random junk, i set to work painting a set to display the towels.

i liked the size of these-8x10 and the slight variance in their size and design. i figured once painted the same color, they would be interesting, but not too matchy matchy.

while max napped, i let ben work with me. the craft paint is pretty forgiving using cheap sponge brushes, so i just smoothed out any globs that were too big on his frame.

i think i let him help with two coats of paint, then i finished the project after the boys were in bed that night with two more coats of paint.

the next day i cut the towels to the framable size (i had a hard time bringing myself to cut into them) and really had to work to get them to fit into the frames. at one point, i was having such a hard time fitting them in and the boys had started to go nuts, running circles around me, that in frustration, i yelled out, "OH FART TOOTS!!!" ben stopped dead in his tracks, gave me the weirdest look, and burst out laughing. after scolding myself for such crass language, i persevered and had these beauties to show for my hard work.

i think they fill the space above the stove well.

then of course i did these blue ones back in december.

and then the black one for our family picture.

boring oakey before:

dazzling, more contemporary after:

today i was plotting my grand finale of painted frame projects-a multiple frame display wall. but that one might take awhile, if i even decide to attempt it.

so go paint something and make it new. shazam.


  1. Awesome...ecological, economical, and educational!! I like the pop of red in the kitchen.

  2. I like. Some day I will try this. . . maybe. . . right now I do not have a good craft-storage area (aka all my crafty junk and paints are up on the top shelf of the tv/toy room closet and difficult to get to. If I could find them a more accessible home, I would be all about these kind of projects.

    In the mean time, you keep being creative and crafty for the both of us, ok? :)

  3. Very nice. I love the red frames around those tea towels. I always thought the embroidery on the towels was cute.

  4. I laughed. OUT. LOUD. at the fart toots part. Like, I am still giddy over it. Aaron thinks we're both nuts, but I think it is hella funny. I know exactly the way you felt leading up to the fart toot explosion. I can empathize so completely.

    The frames look great though, thanks again for the tips. I've been having fun repurposing as well. Shazam back atcha!

  5. Great project! And the towels are just too cute; I'm glad you found a way to display them :)

  6. Thanks for sharing this, I love the red ones as I tell you everytime I'm there. It makes me feel so happy and makes me want to come home and redo my kitchen to look like yours. :) I like projects like these, I always feel frugal and accomplished when I'm done.