Clocks are pretty common thrift finds, but what to do if you don’t love the finish? Paint it, of course! Here’s how to make a painted wall clock to celebrate the 4th of July – and on the cheap.
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I have a thing for clocks.
They’re all over my house!
I can’t tell you why because I really don’t even know, but let a clock show up at a yard sale or thrift store I visit, and nine times out of ten, it comes home with me.
Unfortunately, having all these clocks around my house does absolutely nothing for my tendency to always run late.
I really dislike that about myself.
I prefer being on time – even early – but am one of those people who just can’t seem to pull it off.
But I know why.
In addition to clocks, I also love details and skipping them drives me nuts.
Even more nuts than being late.
I hate the phrase “good enough”, and prefer “if you’re going to do it, do it right.”
Which usually take more time.
And makes me late.
So now that you’re privy to one of my character flaws, let’s get to this clock project – which just happened to have plenty of details which kept me busy for a while.
And made me late.
The Almost-Perfect Thrift Store Clock
I found this gem months ago for just $5 at my favorite thrift store and grabbed it fast.
It actually hung on my wall in its original boring glory for a long time, which is totally out of character because I rarely bring a thrift find home without “fixing” it somehow.
But I loved the style.
I loved those fancy Roman numerals.
I loved the soft and gentle tick you could only hear if the room was early-morning-before-anyone-else-was-up quiet.
And it helped me keep a sharp eye on just how late I was always running.
Okay, maybe I didn’t love that part…but that’s what all my clocks do, and this one joined the club.
But I eventually grew out of love with that respectable and boring frame color.
I’ve been migrating away from dark decor lately, so my beloved but boring clock got moved to the “until I figure out what to do with it” pile.
Painted Wall Clock Inspiration
I’ve been doing some outdoor thinking lately.
Which is another one of my flaws – or strengths?
I guess it depends on how you look at it.
So I’ve been thinking about how I could add some fresh holiday decor to our outdoor spaces and remembered the clock.
I repurposed a thrift store clock for our deck wall a while back.
This time I decided on a simple upcycle instead.
And since the 4th of July is coming up soon, a bright and colorful holiday clock seemed perfect for our covered patio area.
By the way: Upcycle or Repurpose…What’s the Difference? sets the record straight if you’re a little unsure about the difference between the two.
The Thrift Shopper’s BFF
Where would we be without paint?
It truly is a thrift shopper’s BFF!
Paint has the amazing power to totally transform, and if a piece is faded, outdated, or just plain boring, this one simple tool can work absolute magic.
So with the upcoming 4th of July on my brain, and a dull clock in my hands, I decided some bright and metallic paint was absolutely in order.
First though…that finish.
Smooth as silk and not a pore to be found, I had to do something to create a stickable surface for the shimmery metallic paint.
The idea of using sandpaper wasn’t appealing at all, so I went with a flat chalk paint instead and created a workable primer coating.
After two coats I was ready to get started.
Starting with red, I slowly worked my way around the individual little raised rectangles along the inner piece of the frame.
But a great flat craft brush made it so easy.
Next, I hit the outer panel with blue paint.
Finally, I really got my detail mojo going and painted the narrow trim between the red and blue sections, and each of the rectangles with white metallic paint.
But it was lacking just one more thing…
A quick cut project on my Cricut Maker and I had the cutest little star stencil to dress the edges up in perfect American style!
I used chalk paint for the stars and that boring thrift store clock was a thing of the past.
My newly painted wall clock is all ready to deck our deck for 4th of July celebrating!
I’ve used DecoArt’s chalk paints for other projects, but this was the first time I’ve tried the Dazzling Metallics.
They’re silky smooth and I love the shiny finish – absolutely perfect for sparkling summer holiday decor.
So the next time you find a dull piece while thrift shopping, take it home and energize it with some bright and sparkly metallic craft paints.
We’re done with boring!