Friday, April 15, 2011

how to make a cheap thrift shop project…well, not so cheap

last week’s SYTYC theme was “thrift”, and i was excited because i not one, but TWO potential projects i’d been waiting to do.

the one i ended up going with was my wall art:


the other? well, that was a MAJOR craftfail…but that’s a blog post for another day. (trust me, it’s too good not to share)

so this is what i started with:


(sorry about the bad photoshopping…the picture is so big i couldn’t find a place to photograph it without it being pretty obvious that it was my house. hence the bad last minute attempt to white out the background)

really…this thing is HUGE—about 36”x48”. and the best part?


in case you can’t see—that price tag says $7.99. would you believe i almost passed this up? i walked away from it the first time, and then thought “what are you? an idiot? a HUMONGOUS wooden frame and glass and mat in perfect condition for $8!?!?!?”

fortunately, i listened to my inner bargain hunter…and i brought it home.

the picture…well, it’s not horrible. NOT at ALL my style though, so it had to go.


taking it apart was a little painful. it had obviously been professionally done—well done—and very well cared for. but i put on my big girl panties and got to work.

all the paper ripped off…then a thick cardboard layer, then the picture itself followed by the mat. when i got to the glass i paused. it was a LARGE piece of fairly thin glass—relatively sturdy once in the frame, not at all sturdy once taken out of the frame.


  so…with a deep breath i started sliding it out…and…


right through the center.

i was so upset i don’t even have a picture to share with you. plus, i have a fear of glass that mimics my fear of things like toasters and irons—you know, even if it’s unplugged and has been for a week i’m still afraid to touch it because it MIGHT BE HOT. so yeah, it was a big piece of glass with a sharp edge and i’m IMMEDIATELY CONVINCED someone is going to fall on it and die a horrible bloody death even if NO ONE IS AROUND and i wrap it up really well and take it out to the trash right away.

for reals.

i even worry about the garbage man. i don’t want him to get hurt.

so yeah, i’m a little crazy. whatevs. anyway, moving on.

it’s cool. i’ll just load up my four kiddos and my massively pregnant self and head to the local home improvement store to buy a new piece of glass.

cause you know, nothing says classy like a hugely pregnant woman wearing her husband’s sweatpants and t-shirt riding an electric scooter with four other children trailing behind her looking to buy a giant piece of certain death uh, glass.

but i got it. and glass is surprisingly cheap—only about $13 for the replacement piece. which puts my project still under $25—a great price for such a large piece of artwork.

so i brought it home, laid it on the table (once my children were safely in bed) and carefully lifted it out of it’s paper wrapping…




i may have cried a little that time. come on, i’m hormonal.

plus it’s more DEATHKILLDIEBLOODSHARPGLASS in my house.

back to the store…

and this time i wasn’t taking any chances. i sprang (sprung?) for the $23 PLEXIGLASS. and consoled myself that, really, under $50 is STILL a good price for such a big piece of artwork.

right? RIGHT????

so, i finally have all my pieces, and thus begins the actual tutorial of how i went…


but i’m so emotionally drained from recounting all my NEAR DEATH EXPERIENCES. i have to take a break and do this in two parts.

hang on to your hats kids—actual picture tutorial coming soon!

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