Tag: picture frame

A Long Overdo

I have found some awesome stuff in the last couple weeks, but I haven’t posted about it! Below is a quick wrap-up of some of my great finds.

A vintage wind-up alarm clock, I love the face plate on this. It doesn’t run, the main wind-up mechanism is stuck but the alarm works. It’s so pretty I don’t really care, I just set it to a time I like and display it anyway.

Then there is this awesome oddity, a rather detailed house shaped picture frame.

It was $3.99, and it took forever to purchase because the woman in front of me was returning some things… to Goodwill… like 6 bucks worth of junk… to a thrift store. It took about 15 minutes and a manager had to come over and check back in a candle, a candle stick, two place mats and a little purple vase. I am of the opinion that if you buy something at a thrift store, it’s yours. Most second-hand stores don’t even take returns and the ones that do never take returns on the things that would be worth it like furniture and electronics. Back to the frame though, super cool very kitschy.

Moving on here are two chairs that Matt really wanted.

The first green one is a rocker and is in the living room now, it was marked $30 but Matt talked the manager of the Savers up the street down to $12. The second is a Goodwill find and it is super comfortable, doesn’t roll all that well though. Although it seemed to be popular, I sat in it while I contemplated buying it and people kept coming up and touching it.

I saw this lamp from across the store and knew I was definitely going to buy it. I want a new shade though, I think a nice drum shape would be best.

Lastly is a server I bought today for $25. It is very large and a bit dinged up but it is perfect for the kitchen.

I know it’s a not in mint condition but when the guy from the store brought it outside for me he drug it along the asphalt which resulted in this:

He spoke no English, and I don’t think I would have complained anyway but come on I did just buy this. I think thrift stores are generally rather rough with the merchandise I suppose they figure if it’s a got a big gouge in the top people will still buy it so why be careful.

I love the hardware and I think it looks great in my kitchen plus Todd seems to like it so I’ve got that going for me.

Small Metal Frame Display

As I previously mentioned I have collected all the small metal frames I see at thrift stores in preparation for this project. I wanted to display a line of these cheap little metal frames on the strip of wall next to my living room closet. I actually ended up with a couple more than I needed, I am sure I will find something for them to do. Anyway these frames are meant to be propped not hung so a little modification was needed.

Here is the typical back of one of the frames:

The flap that props the frame up needs to be removed to allow the frame to sit flush to the wall. On this one I was able to pull the flap off but on others I had to use pliers to remove the metal hinge connecting the flap to the backing. To create a hook I took thin wire cut in 1-ish inch pieces and bent them into U’s. To attach to the backing I applied hot glue, pressed the U’s ends into the glue and then added a little more on top. This is what I ended up with:

Because the frames are all varying colors of gold, different shapes and sizes I decided to fill them with black and white photos to give the display unity.

I printed all the pictures myself, but I had some problems. Since they were b&w I didn’t think I needed to have a color cartridge (I usually don’t buy color ink) but the first couple pictures came out weirdly pixellated and grainy. After running the print utility, cleaning the cartridge nozzle and messing with the print settings I looked up my problem online. My printer like many others uses the color cartridge to produce grayscale, so I bought a color cartridge and the pictures turned out great.

To finish up I took each frame apart and cleaned the metal and then used Windex on the glass. To insure that the frame, glass, picture and backing stay together when hung up, I stuffed the back of each with filler cardboard.

The easiest way I have found to hang pictures is to trace the frame on the wall, measure where the hook will be and transfer that measurement to the wall. Drive a nail or picture hook or whatever on the spot you marked, then wash the pencil marks off.

Here are the finished pictures, it was impossible to get a good shot of the overview. The light is always wrong right there and the couch casts such a shadow, but you get the idea… it looks really good in person.

The top one has a glare but it’s Matt in front of Cloud Gate in Millennium Park in Chicago. Then it’s me and my sister Bailey on our road-trip to Durango, and you can also see the top of Matt’s head in the next frame.

The first picture is of Matt and I inside the Sears Tower Skydeck also in Chicago, and the one below is a duckling Matt had when he was in high school.

The top one is obviously Todd, and below that is Bailey again, in Silverton.

I love the display but since it is in a high traffic the frames kept ending up crooked. So I used Zots (adhesive dots, usually used for scrap-booking) under each to keep them straight.

Why I'm Addicted to Shopping at Thrift Stores

If you have read any of this blog it should come as no surprise that I love thrifting. I know many people who can’t get over the unorganized, weird smelling, junky nature of most second-hand shops, but I can’t get enough of it.

It’s generally so inexpensive. Where else can you walk in with 5 bucks and come out with a 12×16 inch picture frame and a pair of elephant bookends? It’s unique some of my favorite things have been picked up second-hand like: this Letterpress Tray, my Piggy Bank, and these Meters. Where else can you walk in with no plans on what to buy and walk out with two new outfits and a vase? It’s also an adventure, sometimes you find piles of things you must have and sometimes it’s nothing but ugly lamps, cat figurines and copies of the Da Vinci Code. There are items that you can only guess what their purpose could be and, there are items that are so ugly and pointless you wish to track down there manufacturer and ask why?

In short I am saying second-hand is an amazing way to shop you, if you need more proof:

I have been looking for some small metal picture frames for a while now. I want to do a line of them along the small strip of wall that’s beside my front closet, and I finally got lucky a couple of days ago:

I got these together in a bag with an ugly little fake wood one for only 2.49. Since these are all meant to be propped up instead of hung I will have to modify the backs, I think maybe just a glued on piece of looped wire would work, they are quite light. I need to get around 10 more, I’m hoping to find more silver ones, few that are round to make the line more random.

I was leaving the store when these beautiful plates caught my eye, I just couldn’t pass them up:

There are 6 all together and I bought them for just 69 cents a piece. Only one had a tag:

It identifies the plates as Contempo Teak, alcohol proof and made in Japan. I did some research but couldn’t find much. They are mid-century, teak plates with painted black edges and backs. They are also alcohol proof, but I have no idea why that is. I want to hang them up in a line possibly with the grain-lines facing different directions.

A Nerdtastic Vintage Stamp Display

When I was little I loved to read, and one day I came across a list of hobbies for children, one of which was stamp collecting. I loved it, I stapled together a bunch of grey construction paper and started gluing stamps into it. Eventually I progressed to a more sophisticated method of storage. Around the middle school high school transition I lost my zeal for such a nerdy hobby, and got rid of most of my stamps. I kept one stock-book of my favorite stamps and have had it in a box since then.

About a year ago while looking through my old stamp album, I realized I am still totally interested in stamps. I love the history behind them. Anyway I went onto ebay and bought a stock-book full of random old U.S. stamps to start collecting again. The pictures above and below are pages of that book.

Now that I am trying to get my living room decorated and I have plenty of empty picture frames, I thought a little stamp display would be the perfect thing.

I love the pages of this stock book, it puts me in mind of an old man’s study full of dusty books and green glass lamps. So I used a page cut to the size of the frame to hold the stamps.

The stamps I chose aren’t all technically postage stamps, most are actually revenue stamps. They look like postage stamps but were actually used to pay taxes on everything from checks, documents, tobacco and perfume. Almost all the ones I have here are from the early to mid 1900’s and were for documents of one kind or another, most have handwritten cancels. Revenue stamps aren’t generally worth much without the document they were attached to and are considered “back-of-the-book” or least interesting to a stamp collector. I however find them fascinating. (Source)

The 4 red stamps in the upper left hand corner are postage due stamps. Which were stamps added to a letter with insufficient postage to record the amount due by the recipient. (Source)

Here is my completed display, it took no time to put together once I had selected which stamps I wanted to use. (I used the rest of my collection as a background as I am so tired of using my aqua living room walls or my floor in all the pictures I take)

I will be hanging it up in the living room along with the Faux Terrarium, Blue Platter, and Meters I previously wrote about in an eclectic wall grouping which I hope will get done tonight!

Tiny Faux Terrarium

About a year ago a friend of Matt’s was moving out-of-state and had a pile of home decor items his family didn’t want anymore. Knowing I am always up for a new project he grabbed a bunch of the stuff for me to mess with including some white mini shelves, several sets of sconces, and an assortment of picture frames including this one:

It’s just a little shadow box, around 6 by 6 inches, but it is very generic looking. I always planned on changing out the faded flower but didn’t know what to replace it with. Then when I was going through some keepsakes I found this little cutie.

I have had this little camel figurine for many years and I thought he could look cool sitting inside the shadow box. I also had on hand decorative pebbles and several small fake plants. I thought I would make a little camel habitat. However once I took apart the frame l really liked the look of the shadow box part without the frame. I decided to ditch the frame and glue the glass on instead. Without a way to reopen the box I would either have to glue the camel down or risk him falling over. So I left him out, I’ll have to find him a different home, but he had given me the idea for a faux terrarium which I decided to go ahead with.

Here is the box with the frame removed:

And here are my rocks and plants. The plants are actually for an aquarium, Matt and I are in the process of setting up a live plant tank and so no longer need these fake ones.

I used hot glue to attach the plants to the back of the box, and added the rocks. To see how high I wanted the rocks I held the glass over the frame like in the picture below.

I used some more hot glue to attach the glass to the frame, and I had one very small faux terrarium done!