Repurposed Picture Frames

Added by on March 8th, 2012 @ 10:28 am

We are very excited to feature a guest post today from Sarah Reagan Auer of 16 bourne. Sarah’s blog shares great ideas for DIY projects, style tips and repurposing projects – pretty much everything we love over here at Goodwill! Today, Sarah shares a simple and fun DIY project – repurposed picture frames. This is an item that is donated to Goodwill almost daily – and the possibilities of how you hang them and what you frame are endless! Have you repurposed old frames from Goodwill – let us know!

DIY Crafting: Repurposed Picture Frames

I cannot tell you how often I go to Goodwill and find amazing hidden treasures! One way to change up a wall in your home is to buy different size and texture picture frames and spray paint them. I decided to do gold – but you could do any color. Krylon has tons of different colors – the options are endless. Here is how I did it:

I found six different size picture frames; some were the kind with the print professionally framed with paper on the back – that is OK. After I removed the cover layer of paper, my husband removed the staples holding the back mate into place.

Once I removed all of the backs and glass, I laid them onto cardboard in the driveway (mind you I did this in the late fall, but I think 50 degrees or more would be OK). I did about 5 coats of spray paint, holding the can about 8 inches away. You want to make sure you do not get too close or get drips.

Let them dry for at least an hour or so, longer if you can wait. They are a little tacky for a while.

For one of the frames, I decided to spray paint the glass with chalkboard spray paint. I did about 5 coats on the glass. I let dry over night, and it could have dried longer. I did not write on the board for 2 days or so- just to be sure. You will see the finished product in a minute!

For one of the larger frames I had no idea what to replace the ‘undesirable’ print that was previously in there. So, I decided to make my own matte.

For one of the larger frames I had no idea what to replace the ‘undesirable’ print that was previously in there. So, I decided to make my own matte. I took a pizza box (there was no grease on it surprisingly) and cut it to fit the back of the frame. I cut a hole in the middle of the box a little smaller than the size of the photo I wanted to use. I had some extra cute honeycomb fabric so I used that to wrap the box. I used just basic scotch tape and scissors. Cut an ‘X’ in the back middle of the box.

Than just finish ‘wrapping’ the box!

Waaaaa-laaa! A big frame with custom matte and 4×6 photo.

This frame and print I love. It came like this (elephant and all) but I did do a few coats of the same gold so all my frames would match.

This frame I just wrapped the backing with fabric I had, and put the photos on top. I keep meaning to get the cute photo corners for this…This is also the frame that we took the back off of with pliers. All you have to do once you have your new prints/photos in, is just staple gun a few staples on each side so they keep the back from falling out.

Here was a unique sized frame, and again, wrapped with fabric and used double side tape to keep the vertical photo in place.

So here are all of the frames I got at Goodwill (from $1- $4 a piece) with a new lease on life! If you want to know how I did the stenciling on the wall, you can check it out here.

And this is how the chalkboard spray paint came out :) All and all, for under $30 for ALL of the frames and materials- you cannot go wrong! Thanks Goodwill!! See you soon.

Thank you so much for having me as a guest blogger!

Ken Christian
Senior Director, Communications
Goodwill Administrative Office

Updated 1 year ago by Kimberly Curry

DIY & Goodwill NNE

Giving new life to Goodwill finds extends the life of the item and makes for a sustainable choice. Not only will you be saving money, but you will be saving our planet by diverting products from landfills.

Sustainability & Goodwill NNE

Sustainability starts with a shirt. Goodwill calls it shirt economics. Shirt donations create jobs, and shirt sales sustain the working community.


After growing up in Kennebunk, Maine and living all over New England (including Stowe, Vermont!) and Seattle, Washington where I worked in Marketing for Microsoft - I have landed happily back in Maine close to my family and friends. I work for an advertising agency full-time, and am working on my house, crafts, yard-sales, antiquing, thrifting, party planning and gift giving part-time.