made for each other.

One question that comes up rather frequently on my blog is ‘where do you get your inspiration?’  I’m betting that most of us find inspiration on pinterest, Instagram, in magazines and home decor books, and even in our friend’s homes … oh, and hopefully on your favorite blogs too 😉

But I want to add one more thing to that list for me, my travels.

Back in 2017 I was inspired to paint some things in what I called Norwegian Blue after a trip to Norway.

That’s actually Miss Mustard Seeds Flow Blue on that stool, which I thought made the perfect Norwegian Blue.

I was inspired to make my own Christmas wrapping paper after seeing some gorgeous velvet fabrics in Venice on our recent Adriatic cruise.

I also found some inspiration in Montenegro.  On Wednesday I shared our visit to Our Lady of the Rocks in Perast where I was very much enamored by the painted trim inside the chapel.

I love that combination of blue and gold.  It provided the perfect inspiration for revamping this thrift store frame that I picked up last year.

Naturally that slightly creepy picture of a girl was the first thing to go.  But the frame needed a little work too.  Here’s a close up ‘before’ photo …

The gold paint on the inner frame was barely hanging on by a thread.  Initially I was just going to brush off the loose paint, seal the rest, and call it good.  But most of the paint came off when I touched it.

So plan B was to give the frame a new look inspired by the chapel at Our Lady of the Rocks.

I used a small piece of sandpaper to remove as much of that flaking gold paint as possible and then I repainted the middle section of the frame using Prima Marketing’s chalk paste in a color called Buxton Blue.

Are you wondering what exactly chalk paste is?

It’s basically a very thick version of chalk paint.  It is more commonly used in combination with a stencil to create dimension, but it can also just be used as a thickly textured paint.  It was the perfect choice for this frame because it left behind a textured, layered, aged looking finish with just one thick coat.

Once the Buxton Blue was dry, I pulled out the decor wax in a color called Eternal, which is a gorgeous metallic gold.

Using a q-tip, I applied the wax to the inner-most section of the frame to brighten up the gold a bit.  Then I also used it to highlight the detail on the outer-most silver part of the frame to tie it in with the gold.

The final step was to toss the creepy girl picture and replace it with this water color over a Minneapolis plat map.  This was also a thrift store find, but it came framed in a really cheap and tacky modern metal frame.  And by the way, this is a print not an original artwork.

But it looks so much better (and more authentic) in this vintage frame, and can you believe how perfectly it fit!  It’s like they were made for each other.

So, what do you think?  Can you see where the inspiration from Our Lady of the Rocks played a role in this makeover?  Anyone else tempted to try a blue and gold color scheme on something?

31 thoughts on “made for each other.

  1. Recognizing an inspiration and channeling it is an art unto itself. I like how you added color, spruced up the gold, but still maintained the imperfections that give this frame personality.


  2. Great makeover! I love the frame and I am intrigued with the chalk paste. I have been looking for something to use with stencils and to add texture at times to my pieces. AND yes, I get a lot of inspiration from you!! 😊 Thanks for sharing.


    1. Definitely try the chalk past Monica, it is perfect for adding a patterned texture using a stencil. I have tried it, but haven’t quite got that experiment written up and posted yet. It’s on the to-do list!


  3. Great color combo! And perfect with the map. Never heard of the paste paint…nice to see how the different products work. I will be looking for a frame or two now!


  4. I love it! I like the creepy girl! I have a kinda creepy picture of my Great Grandfather when he was a boy. It is a chalk drawing. My cousin and I used to spend the night with our Granny in her guest bedroom where it resided on an easl. We swore that the eyes followed you! We used to turn him around so he couldn’t watch us sleep! Lol
    Just read your “about me” section after all this time! No mention of Mr.Q and what he does. We know he likes to travel, but that is it. Would love to know more about him! 😊


      1. Whoa! Such a sweet picture on your wedding day! I am 58, and have been with husband since I was 17! About 10 years ago he had heart surgery and ended up in respiratory failue. In a coma and on a ventilator for two weeks. The doctors had already told me they were sorry (meaning he was not expected to make it.) After several days in a coma, a retired Nun came in and prayed over him and he woke up!!! Not kidding! It took a while to get off the ventilator, but he recovered fully! I know your pain. We have no children and our parents had passed, so friends and family helped get us through it.
        Thank you for directing me to his story. I have followed for several years but had not seen this post. You are very lucky to have him. He has done some marvelous things, and he is so cute to boot! I can tell he means everything to you! I wish you a long and happy life!


  5. Wow I somehow missed the frames from the Lady of the Rocks posts. I see how that would inspire you.
    Yours, of course, is also lovely. I didn’t catch the “creepiness” in the original art. Art is definitely definitely a very personal choice. So is this piece going to reside in the Quandie household?


  6. I’ve been really enjoying the photos of your travels these last few weeks. The islands have been my favorite and the chapel at Our Lady of the Rocks. The frame you did perfectly grabs the color and feel of the art from there. I’m saving your work for inspiration if I ever find the right frame. Our thrift store never has frames like this unless there 6′ tall and 4′ wide – that’s a bit too big for any use in my home. I wouldn’t even know where to find something to go in it without driving 70 miles one way to have something printed! My mom has a photo of my great-grandmother that’s super creepy. She was around 105 years old and 1/2 Native American. In the photo she’s “standing” under a tree but her feet aren’t touching the ground! She’s just floating there! I’d love to put it somewhere in my house but I’m afraid it would give me the heebie-jeebies every time I looked at it or it looked at me. Thank you for sharing your travels and inspiration with us!


    1. I’d love to take one of those 4′ x 6′ frames and turn it into a huge chalkboard for my dining room wall! One of these days I’m going to find something big enough to fill up that wall 😉


      1. Well, heck. I never even thought of that! It’s a small town thrift store and my 12 year old has a personal relationship with the owner. They’ve been trying to decrease their inventory and the owner took me aside and offered it to me for free. It was incredibly ornate but since it was huge and I didn’t have you by my side whispering in my ear what I could use it for, I turned it down. I was wanting something smaller. It ended up going to the Senior Center to frame a large puzzle. If this ever happens again, I’ll know just what to do with it!


    1. It came that way. The ‘water color’ is painted directly onto the plat map, it’s not on a separate piece of paper. I put that in quotes because it’s not an original water color, the entire thing is just a print.


  7. Hi,
    Is there somewhere locally to find the gold Eternal touch up? Or can you recommend something similar? I need to touch up a gold frame.


    1. I don’t believe there are any shops nearby that sell it (here is the ‘where to buy‘ link for Prima Marketing). And FYI, I’m pretty sure that the store that is listed in Stillwater, MN on the Prima ‘where to buy’ page doesn’t exist. I’ve never been able to find it anyway. The address given is a single family home (as per Zillow). I order almost everything on line these days, but I know that doesn’t help if you want something right away. You could try using the gold Rub ‘n Buff, which is available at Michaels, if you need something A.S.A.P.


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