How to Glaze a Picture Frame (Simple Instructions with Pictures)

How to Glaze a Picture FrameGlazing a picture frame is a great way to add depth and dimension after you paint it a solid color. It’s especially nice on a frame that’s highly textured.

After spray-painting the frame I used for my post on a DIY Twine & Clothespin Picture Frame, I decided some glaze would help bring out the decorative scrolly detailing that I loved so much. It has been awhile since I glazed a frame, so I fumbled my way through it a bit. Read the steps below to learn how – and how not – to glaze a decorative picture frame 🙂







Here is the picture frame before (silver) and after (gold) I spray painted it. It’s a little (OK a lot) difficult to see the difference in the photo but it’s definitely a different tone:


The gold version looked nice, but I knew it would look even nicer with some deep brown glaze. As you can see, the dark glaze brings out the details:


Use these steps as a guideline for glazing your picture frame. Scroll to bottom for complete list of supplies needed.

Step 1: Choose a glaze.

Be sure the glaze is significantly darker or lighter than your frame. For my gold-tone spray-painted frame (which I painted with Krylon Brushed Metallic Caramel Latte spray paint in the Satin finish), I chose Rust-oleum Transformations Decorative Glaze in Java Brown.


Step 2: Set up your work surface.

Lay out tin foil or something else that will protect the surface you’re working over. I did this project on my kitchen table, so I rolled out tin foil to protect it.

Set up work surface

Step 3: Apply glaze.

Use a paintbrush to work glaze into your frame. Be sure to swirl the brush in all directions so that the glaze settles into all the nooks and crannies of your textured frame. Keep in mind a little glaze goes a long way, so don’t dip too deep into the can of glaze with your paint brush or it will be running over the edges like it did on mine! Oops! Good thing we wipe the glaze up in the next step!


Step 4: Wipe off glaze.

Wear gloves! I didn’t have any but definitely recommend them for this step!

Once your frame is covered with the glaze, go back over the entire surface with a washcloth to wipe off excess glaze. Leave only as much as you like. Keep in mind you can always add more with a second  coat, but once it dries you’ll be stuck with it.

The glaze doesn’t dry all that fast – I came back a couple hours after wiping off the glaze and decided to wipe up some of the spots I wasn’t happy with – it was still plenty wet enough to make my adjustments.


Step 5: Repeat glazing/wiping/drying until you reach desired results.

Once your original coat of glaze dries, you may wish to apply another coat to even out certain areas or create a more dramatic look. Continue glazing and wiping off until you’re happy with the outcome of your frame.

As you can see, my glaze is very subtle – I only did 1 coat before I was happy with the results. Adding more coats and wiping away less glaze will leave you with more dramatic results.


Step 6: Let glaze dry completely before handling frame.

Give the glaze plenty of time to dry completely before you touch it. See my DIY Twine & Clothespin Frame post to see what else I did with this picture frame.

Decorative Twin & Clothespin Picture Frame Craft


Disposable gloves

Glaze (I used Rust-oleum Decorative Glaze in Java Brown)

Paint brush

Wash cloth (one you don’t plan to get clean again)

Tin foil (or another surface to glaze over)

Paper towels (especially if you don’t have gloves!)

2 thoughts on “How to Glaze a Picture Frame (Simple Instructions with Pictures)

  1. Your before and after pictures were taken at different angles against different backgrounds, so the actual difference is not perceptible. DOH!!!

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