November 8, 2010

Lace Stenciled Framed Song Lyrics! (+our wedding music)

If you’ve been following my blog, you know how I made 60 of these painted frames with song lyrics for our wedding decorations/favors…


Well, a lot of wedding guests loved them and took one home, but we had a ton left at the end of the night, which we boxed back up and took home with us…

wedding framed song lyrics!

So we now have 30 of them hanging on our big white living room wall!  Yay!!  There are several duplicate lyrics, some of which I already changed out to engagement photos, but once we get our wedding photos I’ll switch out some more lyrics with photos (but just a few, because we love the look of the lyrics!):

wedding framed song lyrics!

So, hey, you want to know how to make these yourself?  It’s a pretty simple project, but a bit time (and space) consuming… Well, that’s if you’re making 60 like I did… If you just make a few, it shouldn’t take long.  (This project was totally inspired by Mark Montano‘s Big Ass Book of Home Decor and Mark’s love of spray paint!)

I made 2 different types of painted frames: textured frames that were just plain spray painted, and smooth(ish) frames that were painted with lace used as stencils.

Your first step is to take a trip to your local thrift store (or several of them) and find frames – whatever sizes you want (mine were 3×5, 4×6, and 5×7), either textured to do the simple version, or plain untextured frames to do the lace stenciling.  (Of course, you can do the simple version with plain frames too, if you want to.)

wedding framed song lyrics! wedding framed song lyrics!

For the textured frames, simply take out the glass/backing (be sure to keep track of which goes with which frames), lay the (clean) frame down on a protected surface (like newspaper) in a ventilated space (I did it all outside, but breeze/wind makes it tough – an open garage would be ideal – either way, wear a face mask when doing lots of spray painting!), and spray (as the spray paint can instructs).

I did them in batches of 6-10 at a time – sprayed 1 coat over them all, then went back with a 2nd coat over them all.  Be sure to get the sides (unless the frame has an interesting edge and you choose not to paint over it).  After letting dry for 5-10 minutes on the newspaper, I transferred them to an outdoor table to dry completely (or, until bringing them inside for the night).

wedding framed song lyrics!

For the lace stenciled frames, there are a couple extra steps.  You’ll need: spray adhesive, spray paint, plenty of space to work, and lots of newspaper to cover your work surface, and a face mask for safety so you don’t breathe in all those glue and paint fumes.

And then the lace itself – find vintage doilies, curtains, and other home decor items from thrift stores, with interesting patterns.  I’ll show you lots of examples of different kinds of lace used as stencils, in a minute…

wedding framed song lyrics!

  • First, spray the lace with a thin coat of spray adhesive (with it sitting on newspaper).
  • Stick the lace onto the frame, as you want it placed – be sure to stick it all down the best you can.
  • Spray a good thick coat over the frame through the lace stencil.  (At first, I was doing 2 coats, like with the plain painted frames, but sometimes the lace would become un-stuck after the first coat, so the second coat would make it blurry.)
  • Let dry for a minute or so, then carefully lift off the lace (you don’t want the glue to stick it on there permanently!), and lay it flat somewhere to dry (you can use the same pieces again later).
  • Let dry completely as the spray paint can instructs.

wedding framed song lyrics!

Here’s what my yard looked like during this project:

wedding framed song lyrics! wedding framed song lyrics!

And some of the stenciled frames, drying:

wedding framed song lyrics!

I really like how the textured frames look too!  We ended up taking home mostly stenciled frames, which I’m happy about, but I might thrift for some more frames like those crazy curvy designs below and make more of those:

wedding framed song lyrics!

Here are a couple of the textured frames we did take home – that green one is one of my absolute favorites!

textured painted frame textured painted frame

Note – you can click on the pictures to go to the flickr pages and read what songs the lyrics came from, if you’re curious.  A couple more simple textured frames:

textured spray painted frame textured spray painted frame

And some close ups of the lace stenciling over a couple different kinds of frame surfaces (the one on the left is some kind of coated fabric surface, and shiny metal on the right):

lace-stenciled frame lace stenciled frame

And now to show you all different kinds of lace options…

lace stenciled frame lace-stenciled frame

These 3 (above and below) are stenciled with doilies – the above/left frame is the doily pictured in the above/left of the photo, and the other two are the same positions as well.

lace stenciled frame lace stenciling

Below, these are stenciled with pieces of vintage lace curtains (I think, maybe tablecloths?) that covered the whole frames…

lace-stenciled frame lace-stenciled frame

You can see how the lace on the left, with the fine mesh, made a more subtle, textured pattern when painted through (another example here, and one that didn’t turn out so well here), and the lace on the right, with the big holes, made the more graphic, bold design.

lace stenciling lace stenciling

Another big lace curtain, cut into pieces for these…

lace stenciled frame lace stenciled frame

…laid over partially for the purple one, and over the whole frames for the other 2 (green above and blue below).

lace stenciled frame lace stenciling

And then, a messed up, weirdly shaped piece of lace, that I cut into different sized pieces, around the curved shape of the lace design…

lace-stenciled frame lace-stenciled frame

You can see how the same lace can look different when used on a shiny painted surfaced frame (above, orange), or an unpainted wood frame (below).

lace stenciled frame lace stenciling

And lastly, I got this big Noah’s Ark themed kid’s room decor lace thing, which I cut into all different kinds of pieces…

lace-stenciled frame lace stenciled frame

…since there was so much going on, I could get lots of different looks out of the same lace item.  See those square parts, the top edging with the long curved rectangle shapes, and then all the curves and different hole designs in the pictures…

lace stenciling

lace stenciled frame lace stenciled frame lace stenciled frame

So, all the frames above and below here came from that same lace thing, cut and placed different ways (I obviously really like the squares).

lace stenciled frame lace stenciled frame

Look at your local thrift store for lace in the home decor section, with tablecloths, with dishcloths, with curtains, on end cap sections… I find lace in weird places sometimes.  If you try out this project, I’d love to see your frames!

Oh, and a side note, just a reminder that my October club ebook includes 7 of my favorites of these lyric artwork things for printing out.

If you want to make your own, it’s easy if you have a photo editing program that can do text (and some experience using it) – just download some fun fonts (some of my favorites for this project are Bleeding CowboysAngioma1942 ReportBenny BlancoVNI-Thuphap, Schneller), type your favorite lyrics, with the text box set to justify, and mess with the text size, letter spacing, line spacing, etc until it looks good.

wall of framed song lyrics

Because it somewhat relates… want to know about the music we played at our wedding?  We spent tons of time putting together playlists – an hour of songs to play before, and about 3 and a half hours worth for after.

The ceremony was bookended by The Magnetic Fields – It’s Only Time for walking down the aisle, and The Book of Love walking back down after we were married.

I love the whole playlist, but I’ve put together kind of a best-of that’s 1 mix CD length:

  1. The Book Of Love / The Magnetic Fields
  2. We’ve Only Just Begun / Grant Lee Buffalo (covering The Carpenters)
  3. Ceremony / New Order
  4. The Best Is Yet To Come / Tony Bennett
  5. Hazy / Rosi Golan feat. William Fitzsimmons
  6. Lovin’ You Lots and Lots / The Norm Wooster Singers
  7. I’ll Be Your Mirror / The Velvet Underground & Nico
  8. Summers / Loney, Dear
  9. I Found My Way / Dusty Springfield
  10. Our Love Is Here To Stay / Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong
  11. How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You) / Marvin Gaye
  12. Top Of The World / The Carpenters
  13. Darlin’ Companion / Johnny Cash & June Carter Cash
  14. The Greatest Sum / The Avett Brothers
  15. Grow Old With Me / John Lennon
  16. Fly Me To The Moon / Julie London
  17. Pop Goes My Heart / Pop
  18. I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles) / The Proclaimers
  19. The Very Thought Of You / Elvis Costello
  20. On The Radio / Regina Spektor
  21. Take Me / Karen Dalton
  22. All I Want Is You / U2
  23. It’s Only Time / The Magnetic Fields

I had to put some boundaries on it in order to cut 4 1/2 hours down to 80 minutes – many of the songs played at the wedding were songs that Pete or I had put on mixes to each other when we were first dating, so since those already existed on mixes, I left them off of this mix (mostly).  A lot of the songs have a specific memory for us, or some reason for being on this mix beyond the song itself.  And then, I just tried to make it a good quality mix, lots of variety, ups and downs, etc.  A glimpse into our wedding soundtrack.

wedding framed song lyrics!

And lastly, about wedding music, my brothers played a set for us!  A medley of some favorite tv theme songs (including My So-Called Life and Pete & Pete) and a fantastic rendition of I’m Gonna Be (which is why that song made the cut onto the wedding mix)!  It was so good!! Yay!

Filed under: general crafts,home stuff,music,personal,tutorials — leethal @ 2:37 pm
  • Anonymous

    Wow! Just found a small stash of some doilies that have seen better days… now I know what to do with them!! Thanks for sharing these, they are great!

  • livinwide

    awesome project! may have to try it.

  • Yay, these are awesome, Lee!! So great!

  • gertie

    Vintage frames are something that I’m always drawn to and looking for something new to do with them. Doilies! Who woulda thunk?

    I have some teapots that will be made into lamps. Now if I can find the doilies to use for the lace effect, then maybe my sisters will get their presents in time for Christmas.

  • Hopelessshade

    You know, I really like the lace frames concept, but what I’m really taking away from this post is that you know From This Moment On and now it, and that whole dance sequence from Kiss Me Kate, are going to be stuck in my head for the rest of the day.

  • Annabombana

    These look great – I was amazed to see the lyrics from the Lucksmiths ‘guess how much I love you’ – this is not a well known song – I used to love it when I was at university – you really took me back! Are you Australian? how did you come across it? Or did those Lucksmiths cover it?

  • Great idea! if I ever am to host a aprty with not too many guests, I tihnk I might just make something like this:)

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  • Trinalea Briggs

    This is…this is…this is…so awesome…that I am uncharacteristically lost for works! Thank you for sharing some of your creative genius with us.

  • Lee

    Nope, not Australian, just a former college radio DJ ;) I was a huge Lucksmiths fan in college (in San Diego), still like them a lot… a roommate introduced me to Happy Secret and Why That Doesn’t Surprise Me and I got semi-obsessed and tracked down all their older albums and EPs (got a few of them on vinyl). I still listen to Why That Doesn’t Surprise Me regularly… and they end up on my mixes often (like this one – ) :)

  • Lee

    haha… I actually have never seen Kiss Me Kate (and didn’t know that song is from it) but I am a huge Carpenters fan! Their recording of the song was on our wedding playlist… Wikipedia ( ) says their version is “highly original…” :-p Now I have Kiss Me Kate in my netflix queue, thanks!

  • Rachel

    Oh my gosh I love this idea so, SO much, both for decor and for the wedding. GORGEOUS! Thanks so much for the great idea, I’ll be linking.

  • This is a great idea. They look amazing

  • these are stunning

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  • um. you’re perfect. this is perfect. this would be a PERFECT fit on my blog all about weddings and music called hi-fi weddings. i’d love to feature this project and your wedding, if you are interested! please email me and let’s discuss the deets :)

    xoxo – ashley

  • Hillspeters

    well, believe it or not…”i’m gonna be” is my favorite love song…we are walking back down the aisle to it after we get hitched!!!

  • Nannyhas4

    Really great ideas ,very creative!I will do this myself,keep the ideas coming .

  • Nannyhas4

    Really great ideas ,very creative!I will do this myself,keep the ideas coming .

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  • Fiona

    These are absolutely incredible! I can’t wait to go home from college for the summer and experiment with this idea! I now have very cool gift ideas for my friends. Yours came out fantastic and very cool idea for wedding decorations.

  • Butterieflie

    OH, MY! how fabulous!!!! I can’t wait to try it!

  • Tlwkamloops

    This is such a great idea! I was looking for some wall decor for my new cafe…this is def it!

  • oMordah

    Hi, I did a version of this as x mass gifts for co workers one year. I tried to tailor the lyrics
    to the person’s musical tastes. I was cute, fairly easy, and everyone really seemed to love them!

  • oMordah

    …make that, IT was cute… heheh, sorry ’bout that!
    Please visit my Etsy shop, oMordah©
    for awesome gifts and accessories.

  • Kat

    Hi I just did this with some pictures of my trip to Europe… it turned out great! I chose to just use four different colors for the first coat and then spray painted them all black for the top coat. Totally in love with them

  • This one is really one of the most entertaining collections. The pictures and frames are really looking just fabulous in this post. And the song lyrics of this post is really just fabulous. This one is really the great post.

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  • Donsarap

    How did you go about putting the lyrics on the colored backgrounds? Is it all calligraphy that you did or did you somehow print it on using a computer?

  • Lee

    i just printed them out with my normal inkjet printer on colored cardstock paper :)

  • Donsarap

    Thank you! You’re awesome!

  • I LOVE this project!! Ever heard of the Offbeat Empire? They are three sister sites called Offbeat Bride, Offbeat Mama and Offbeat Home, and I think your project would ROCK on all three! They could preview the idea and then link to your blog for the instructions which would send a LOT of traffic and fans your way! If you’ve already done so and I missed it, well kudos for the great idea anyway! 

    Hope to see you on OBE soon! 


  • Anonymous

    There are such a nice photo frames. I am really happy with these lovely photo frames. I like its unique design and style. I also like the colour combination of frames.   ‘


  • Gabrielle

    Wow!! this is amazing!! 

  • nonacitp

    this is so cute. I’d like to make one for my room. :) thanks for the inspiration!

  • Amanda Marie

    these are amazing!! I have to used this idea for my wedding!! Thank you for share your brillance with the world!!

  • Ashli

    I LOVE THESE! My best friend and I are going to make some things we love on Pinterest this weekend and I thought how cool it would be to use lace as a stencil for frames and googled the idea and found this! Definitely doing it this weekend! So happy I found your tips :) 

  • Pjranfan917

    These are really cool!  I told a friend at work she could also do the same thing in her daughters room.  Just use alphabet letters, nursery verses & photo’s of her daughter…The possibilities are endless!


    I am madly in love with this project! You have helped me decide my wedding decor’s fate!! Thanks for posting!  :)

  • Katie from Loverly She

    LOVE this project!  I linked you up on my blog:

  • Dana

    love this idea! going to try some soon. Found you by Stumbling… thank you for sharing

  • Sharon

    may do this for my wedding :) awesome idea !!!!

  • Greer

    Cant wait to m
    ake these!!! Thanks for the great tutorial

  • Andy

    Your tutorial was fabulous! I appreciate all the details and pictures…thanks and by the way I’m totally trying it.

  • Chris

    Super awesome idea! And beautifully accomplished – THANKS!!!

  • Sian

    A great idea to brighten up any room and it seems that there are endless possibilities with this project.

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