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  • Katie Smith

Mixed Media DIY- Painting a Frame

Hello there! I’m Heather Greenwood of Heather Greenwood Designs and I’m so excited and honored to be here as a guest at Punk Projects. I’ve fallen in love with Katie’s projects and am thrilled to be here among such talent.

I am a pocket scrapbooker who likes to add a mixed media twist to my memory keeping album. I love being able to show how you can add a bit of your own creative style to your projects and memory keeping.

I thought today I would show you how to add a mixed media flair to your home decor. I’m going to show you how to dress up a frame using paint and stencils. Are you ready to add some fun to your home decor?


  1. a frame (doesn’t have to be naked)

  2. acrylic paints

  3. stencils

  4. makeup sponge

  5. gesso (optional)

  6. gel medium (optional)

Gesso is like a primer so I like using it as a base on all my projects to extend the use of the paints by preventing it to soak into the frame or paper. It is optional however and not needed. You can use any colors you want. I chose a mixture of reds pinks and orange to match my photo that I was framing. OK, orange isn’t in the photo, but it’s my favorite color and I like to add orange to my projects.


1) Select and pour out a few colors of paint that match your photo.

1a) (optional) using your makeup sponge spread on a layer of gesso to cover the frame.

2) start with your darker colors, mix them together on your makeup sponge and start spreading it over the gesso’d frame until you have it covered. You can see here why I like mixing the colors.

In this photo you can see I mixed together the burgundy, the red, and the white for the first layer of painting.

3) lay your first stencil down… I like to start with stencils with larger “holes” in them to start off with.

4) start mixing in your lighter colors and dabbing the sponge on top of the stencil moving it around the frame. Repeat this process with other stencils and different color mixes until you’re happy.

The key to the mixed media look is layers, lots and lots of layers. Below you will see that I went over the larger stenciled areas with a smaller stencil to really add in more texture and coloring. But really, you can do as little or as much as you want, totally up to you. I even liked it with just the few areas of orange in the beginning. I also really like all the amazing texture that comes from lots of layers. You can still see the orange and some of the darker areas underneath the top layers. Have fun and just keep playing and experimenting.


Now, you can stop here. It’s totally gorgeous like this. There are some things I wanted to add to it. I found these stickers in my stash by Tim Holtz and stuck them on. I then added a layer of gel medium over the whole frame to really get the stickers on there permanently and to add some finishing touches to the frame.

I then took a red Faber-Castell Big Brush Stamper’s Marker to draw and smudge around the stickers and blend the color into the pink. I also took the marker and drew around the edge of the frame and also smudged it with my fingers to blend it in.

Then I took some more white paint mixed with a tiny bit of pink paint to add some more stenciling over the top to lighten up the frame since the red marker really made it much darker than the pink in the photo.

Lastly, I took a white Faber-Castell Marker and outlined and smudge the stickers again, just to make them pop a little.

I trimmed my photo to fit inside the frame and Voila!!!

For more mixed media projects and inspiration you can find me on my blog:, my Facebook page, Pinterest and Instagram.

Thanks for having me Katie! It was so much fun putting together this project and sharing it here with you and your readers. I look forward to seeing more fun projects from you.

#guestblog #tutorial

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