You’re in for a treat today–it’s time for our monthly Thrifty Chicks challenge, and this month is frames. If you’re like me, you have more than a few (try a couple hundred) lying around, waiting inspiration to strike.
We’ve got plenty of that for you with this challenge! In addition, I’ll be using my transformed frame to hold a vintage button Valentine that I think you’ll agree is lovely. Vintage mother of pearl buttons on red velvet and framed by a freshly beautified frame. What’s not to love?
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Materials for Transforming (Aging) a Frame
- Vintage brown frame (or a new one)
- Black chalkpaint (I use DecoArt’s Carbon)
- Sand paper
- Paste wax (I use Johnson’s)
- Piece of cardboard the same size as your frame
Like I said, I’ve got frames galore (or maybe they have me?). I have them in every conceivable size, color, and texture.
Once I settled on creating a button heart, I chose a 5″ x 7″ frame to go along with it. I always choose brown (or orange-y brown in this case) when I want to use black paint because the brown shows through nicely when the black paint is distressed. I like the slightly aged and time-worn look that’s created.
How to Age a Frame for an Antique Look
Step 1: Give the frame two thin coats of Decoart chalky paint in Carbon and allow it to dry.
Step 2: Lightly sand all around the edges and corners to allow some of that brown color to show through.
Here’s a closer look at the distressing.
Step 3: Next apply a thin coat of clear wax, left it to sit for five minutes, and then buff it out with some cheesecloth (see photo below of a finished frame).
Materials for Making a Vintage Button Heart on Velvet
Now to create the “art” that the frame will hold. I cut a piece of red velvet from an old curtain I bought for crafting purposes and set my frame on top of it.
How to Make a Vintage Button Valentine
Step 1: With your buttons, create a heart shape, gluing them to the surface of the velvet with tacky glue. Here you see the first round of buttons.
Step 2: Position more buttons in the interior of the heart shape and glue them into place.
I recommend using vintage buttons because, as you can see in this photo, they offer a variety of textures and shades of white, which makes things interesting.
Step 3: Add a bow to finish off your Valentine–I used vintage seam binding. It only takes an hour or so for all the glue to dry, and then you’re ready to adhere the velvet to a piece of cardboard that fits the frame opening–in my case 5″ x 7″.
Step 4: Staple the velvet to the cardboard around the edges and then trimmed the excess velvet.
Step 5: Insert your beautiful creation into the frame, securing it with small nails and then backing it with brown paper (see a full how to in this post: Framing Like a Professional).
Here you can see the satin finish that a coat of wax gives to chalk paint. It also prevents the paint’s chalky-ness from rubbing off onto your hands or clothing and protects the painted surface as well.
[Did you notice that I ended up using a different frame than I started with?!! Turns out the one in the photos at the top of the post had a weird back that would not work for this project. So I had to use a previously painted one that I had on hand. Luckily, I keep a stack of frames ready to use in projects like this.]
I had been planning to write a Valentine sentiment on my chalkboard but had a sudden inspiration that my new “art” might work perfectly. I hung the frame using a piece of ribbon and a couple of tacks.
A simple hanging solution that creates a lovely Valentine decoration.
I hope you all have the opportunity to celebrate the holiday with someone you love, whether it’s a dear friend, child, or spouse.
Happy Valentine’s Day, Friend!
Be sure to check out my fellow Thrifty Chicks creative projects:
1. A Frame for Valentine’s Day, Shoppe No. 5
2. Coastal Picture Frame Serving Tray, Interior Frugalista
3. A Frame Transformation + Vintage Button Valentine, Adirondack Girl @ Heart (me!)
4. Upcycled Valentine Picture Frame, Little Vintage Cottage
5. Sheet Metal Frame, Lora B Create & Ponder
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