Friendly Frames

I love the character of a great, old flea market frame almost as much as I love the character of a great, old flea market dresser. 😉 So when I spotted this old beauty, holding a huge hunk of mirror, I couldn’t get to it quick enough!

The color of it was exactly what I had been secretly visualizing using in our guest bathroom for the past few months…

(new mirror)

Yeah, Kevin didn’t know it, but I mentally replaced the white-framed mirror that was previously hanging in there as soon as he hung it up. :-)

(old mirror)

I’ve trained myself to not say anything about decor-related things that bother me until after I find a replacement for them. That way, Kevin doesn’t have to stress about them too. Or should I say, that way, Kevin doesn’t have to stress about me wanting to buy something else after he just spent a half an hour hanging the heaviest mirror in existence. :-)

If you aren’t familiar with my “wait and wow!” technique, you should try it.
It works like a charm. Nine-and-a-half times out of ten, your spouse will like your “replacement idea” more than the previous option too- they just have a harder time visualizing than you do. Presenting them with an actual item you’d like to use instead, and explaining why it makes more sense when you have it right in front of you is key.
I’m tellin’ ya- it’s a bonafide stress-saver! :-)

PS- Kevin likes our new mirror so much, he didn’t even mind that he had to spend two days adding extra tile to the wall because the new mirror is a little smaller than our old one…

Okay, that part isn’t true. :-)


This next flea market frame, however, was a little bit harder to sell Kevin on…

…but I quickly put his worried mind at ease by explaining my “big transformation plans” for this piece. (More on that project to come!)


I got all the frames in our dining room at flea markets too…

I used to have everything framed in new frames on our picture ledge, but there was something about the colors, textures and shapes of these old ones I collected over time that just seemed to work in here…

Muted blue and chippy, meets cloud white and smooth…

There’s comfort in the cracks too…


In the living room, I mixed a flea market frame with a couple of new frames I got at Michaels for a crisp, collected look…

I got the middle frame for $2.00, and I took the photo of a rooftop in Charleston, South Carolina while visiting with my Mom last summer…


In the reading room, I used a bunch of different frames too. I found this Roger Tory Peterson lithograph (© 1942) at a flea market for $14.00, and although I’ll probably switch out the frame, it is sort of nice how this one takes a back seat to the artwork inside it…

On the other side of the reading room, I used another mixture of new and old frames, but I made a conscious to decision to use only frames that looked old.

The mirror, on the left, was previously very shiny and silver. I used a rusting kit to age it, then dry-brushed on some creamy-white craft paint to give it a “salty” look…

The frame holding Kevin’s Moms photo is an old frame…

…while the frame holding my Moms photo is a new frame, that looks old.

The white shadowbox filled with shells is also new, but it’s distressed, so it blends in nicely with look of the other frames.


In the guest room, I used all new frames…

…but because they’re all different styles, I was able to put together a grouping that still appealed to my love of all things “loose”. :-)


In the end, what type of frames you use isn’t half as important as remembering to use them is. Surrounding yourself with images of the people, poetry and places you love will not only make you feel good, it will give your home a pulse too!



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  1. says

    Beautiful….and believe it or not, I was just thinking today, “can I mix frame finishes in the same room?” Thank you for your wonderful design sense!!!

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