How to Refresh Ugly Thrift Store Picture Frames and their Mats in a Flash

Give thirft store picture frames and their mats a fast and easy new look with paint

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Hi All!

If you’re a thrift store junky like me you’ve probably done it a thousand times, walked past the frame section thinking Yuck! before moving on to the next area.  But did you know those ugly outdated frames and their mats can be easily updated in just a few minutes?   Today I am showing you how I transformed these two ugly frames!

How to update out dated ugly thrift store picture frames and their mats quickly and easily using paint.

project recipe

Spray Paint – I used Rust-Oleum Flat Metallic Soft Iron Spray Paint – left over from my Garage Trash to Romantic Industrial Beauty Shelves.
Latex Paint – Also left over from my Brick Stencil Feature Wall
Paint Brush
Alcohol Based Spray Cleaner
Paper towels

How to update out dated ugly thrift store picture frames and their mats quickly and easily using paint.

I started by taking apart the old ugly gold frames and giving them a through cleaning using a alcohol based cleaner.  This will remove any excess dirt and oils from the metal and allow the paint to adhere smoothly.   Next I simply painted on both sides with two coats of my Rust-Oleam Metallic Flat Soft Iron Spray Paint.

How to update out dated ugly thrift store picture frames and their mats quickly and easily using paint.

While waiting for the spray paint to dry I simply took the two professionally cut mats that came with my ugly thrift store frames and painted them.  I used my regular old paint brush and two coats of Latex paint.  In this picture the paint looks a bit on the white side but it is actually a light-medium gray (Valspar Shoreline Haze 6008-1B) that was left over from my Amazingly Real Stenciled Brick Feature Wall.




After all my painting was done I let everything air dry overnight before reassembling and adding in my two vintage road maps. (Next week I’ll show you a fast and easy trick for smoothing out all those awful creases for a smooth beautiful map display).

How to update out dated ugly thrift store picture frames and their mats quickly and easily using paint.

How to update out dated ugly thrift store picture frames and their mats quickly and easily using paint.




How to update out dated ugly thrift store picture frames and their mats quickly and easily using paint.

Ahhh… So cozy.  After all the moves and all the houses we’ve lived in.  This bedroom will always be my favorite.  Romantic Industrial dreams do come true.

How to update out dated ugly thrift store picture frames and their mats quickly and easily using paint.

I hope you enjoyed my quick and easy tutorial!  May it inspire you to create!  Questions or comments please leave them below!





/>Shop my styleDon’t have a set of thrift store frames to refresh?  Here are a few options that have a similar look and feel!

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Give thirft store picture frames and their mats a fast and easy new look with paint

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6 thoughts on “How to Refresh Ugly Thrift Store Picture Frames and their Mats in a Flash

  1. I love finding thrift store frames to redo too. That’s such a good idea to paint the mats along with the old exterior frame!

  2. 100 times better, Cat. You’ve completely transformed the frame, and it looks so good in your beautiful bedroom!

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