Last weekend I bought a small frame and large mirror for a total of $12 at a nearby estate sale. They were really well made and had some nice details, but they were painted hideous colors. My husband came up with the title by the way. Lovely.
The wooden frame was painted dark brown with gold underneath. It just made it look dirty and old.
I cleaned the frame with Krud Kutter (recommended by Miss Mustard Seed) and after the wood was dry, I sanded the piece using 60 grit sandpaper. I didn't want to completely take all of the paint off, so after a light sanding to make the details stand out more, it looked like this.
I think it looks like I just took the same picture but with better lighting, but that was the difference the sanding made! The frame is now more gold than brown and the details are featured rather than hidden. I considered painting the frame white afterwards, but I really like how it is now. I think it's important not to hide everything under paint if the piece is in good condition. A nice antique print will really stand out here.
The large mirror was painted gold but the details in the frame had a darker reddish-gold hue to them. I'm guessing this was due to age. The condition of the frame was okay. Some of the details had cracks in them so I considered painting the entire frame white after sanding it down.
I started sanding the details and realized that someone had already painted the frame white in the past. I liked how the white was highlighting the details so I continued to distress the sides of the frames and came up with this.
I might stop here but I can't decide if the mirror would look better entirely white. What do you think? I knew when to stop on the frame, but am having trouble making a decision with this guy. Hmm...