Cleaning Picture frames ???

sooeyAugust 19, 2010

Hi Kids,

I have several, older picture frames. Many of them are over 40 years old and are showing their age. The ones that are in the greatest need are the ones that have a gold finish. These were good frames made from quality stock. As I look at them I can see the areas showing the most wear are along the sides where we have lifted or carried them...oil from our hands? I could replace them but I would rather save my money if I can clean them up myself.

Since this is a Trash to Treasuer forum I am thinking that this is a good place to start. How do I clean them? Should I apply a wax or laquer (sp?)to restore a bit of body/shine? Should I sand and repaint? If so, what is a good paint to use...I know gold paint can be very iffy.

If I was looking for shabby it would be oh so easy, but I am not. I would like to bring them back to their past traditional glory. Any ideas?

Thanks, Kids. I appreciate any help you can give me.


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I don't know what kind of gold is on frames, some is gold leaf on the ones that are fancy cornered with scrolls, roses etc. You can tell them as they look like plaster or Plaster of Paris where the gold is rubbed off. You would want to replace that(after any repairs) library would have info on that, it may have changed since I last did 1. There is some gold rub stuff but it would not look the same. Lots of gold paints out there but few that look nice & do pic justice. Maybe someone else can help. I've used Windex on cheaper frames to get smoke, dirt off & then just tighten up & undercoat with spray & finish with spray or else I use a sponge brush for both & if it is "busy" wood I use a bristle brush to get into the grooves, scrolls etc.(Antique frames I try to restore to what I think they looked like originally) Jan

    Bookmark   August 20, 2010 at 1:36AM
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Thank you, Jan. These frames are very simple wood frames, no fancy scrolls, no Plaster of Paris, just wood. But now you have me thinking about other options...I had not thought about the rub on stuff. It has been several years since I have done anything like that so I have no idea what is out there now. I could always use real gold but that may be a bit of over kill...but still an option. They would also look great when finished. Thanks, you have given me something to think about.


    Bookmark   August 20, 2010 at 10:36AM
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