Friday, November 19, 2010


Do you ever have procrastination-inspired brainstorms that turn out sooooo much better than you could have imagined? 

Let me show you mine:

Now here's the story: 

I needed a birthday present for a grandparent. It had to be low-budget. As in low. I knew I had taken a couple great pictures of my boys this summer, and what do grandparents love more than pictures of their grandkids? Maybe some artwork by them? 

Enter dollar store frames + paint.

No, my little guy isn't wearing a shirt. 

Oh look, neither is big brother!

Yes, J2 tasted it. No, it wasn't toxic. We used washable tempura in 3 different colors. J2 wasn't telling if the red tasted different than the green!

J1 didn't taste it, but had as much fun painting his hand, the paper plate, the newspaper and an extra paper as he did the picture frame!

Here are the masterpieces laid out to dry on plastic wrap. I did fill in a couple spots so the frame wasn't showing, and I painted the inside and outside edges.

J1's frame has more streaks cuz he actually brushed the paint on.

J2's frame has a sponge effect because he patted the frame with his brush. I added a coat of poly and wrote their names, ages and the date on the back with permanent marker.

Here's the finished product!

Aren't they adorable?! (Yes, I see that I need to center the above picture!)

Here's a cost breakdown:
frames: $1 each
paint: already on hand
poly: previously owned
5X7 pictures: Kodak kiosk at CVS, $2 each (I know, I could have done better for 5X7s, but I love the quality of Kodak pictures and didn't have time to order from their website which is cheaper than the kiosk option.)
subtotal: $3 each
grand total for gift: $6

This will be a project for more family members in the future, you can count on that! I know they will love it. I do! 

Chic on a Shoestring Decorating


  1. Love this project Ellie! I've framed the boys' artwork before as grandparent gifts but never thought of the FRAME being part of the artwork! Yay for clever mommies.

  2. Adorable. Creative. Ingenious. and Beautiful. What a great idea, Lizz! Thanks for sharing your blog on facebook, or I would have never discovered this gem of a website! Blessings to you all. ~Jaime Bohlman

  3. Okay these frames are wonderful! And such a meaningful gift to give the grandparents! Love this! We started our weekly Monday linky party if you want to link up! This is so crafty.. thanks Ellie!

  4. Such a cute idea and I laughed out loud when I saw the paint around your boy's mouth. Typical! Lovely effect and the frames look great. Thanks for your kind words on my blog, sweet lady.



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