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How to Re-Paint Dated DecorWant to know How to Repaint Dated Decor?

Raise your hand if you are a thrift shopper? No, what about yard sales? Have you ever seen any ugly ceramic decor items that shouldn’t have survived the 70’s or 80’s? Nodding your head YES? I thought so. Today I’m going to show you How to Repaint Decor. Those dated monstrosities can look like something you bought from Ballard Design or Pottery Barn! Don’t believe me, well check out this groovy pair (emphasis on pear. LOL.)

Would you believe this is the same fruit duo?

Yup! I scored them both for $5.

Now, have you seen these deliciously rustic pears from Ballard Designs? Yes? Did you happen to catch the price tags? $49 each!

Umm, no thank you, I’ll stick with my $2.50 fruit—Thank you very much. Let me show you how you can paint any ceramic, pottery, or china decor item to give it a new updated look. You’ll need a few things first.


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Optional: Rustoleum Comfort Spray Paint Handle (saves your fingers from cramping!)


Clean your decor item with soap and water. Dry thoroughly.

Lightly sand the surface to give a little roughness.

Lay your decor item(s) on paper and spray with several thin coats of spray primer. Allow the primer to dry.

Spray several light coats of Rustoleum’s Heirloom White spray paint. Allow to dry.

If you want, you can leave the base color white. But, if you want to color your item, mix a base color with the acrylic craft paints. Using the fan brush use a “cross-hatch” pattern to apply the paint onto your item. (This gives more depth and interest than painting on a thick coat of paint.)

Next mix your glaze by combining acrylic paint (Mix raw sienna (dark brown), burnt sienna (red brown) and yellow ochre until you have a nice golden brown antiquing color.) Pour a small circle of glaze material onto your plate. Dip the fan brush into the glaze medium and then into the mixed acrylic paint. Dab off some paint onto the paper plate (you don’t want your brush to be saturated.) Brush the glaze onto the item and use the fan brush to blend the glaze around. Feel free to use the same cross-hatch pattern you did earlier.

Work in small areas and brush the glaze around until your brush doesn’t have any more glaze on it.
Then use a rag to dab around the decor item until you are happy with the results.

Paint any features onto your decor item (stems, branches, faces, etc.) To paint the pear’s leaf, try a dark brown (raw sienna) and a yellow ochre for the highlights. Acrylic paint is really forgiving. If you don’t like it you can paint over it.

I couldn’t be happier with the results of my repainted home decor! I saved myself about $95 for two decor items!
This fruit decor is perfect for any season . . .

But, I like to bring them out in the fall.

Happy thrifting y’all! Never leave cheap dated decor behind again.

Did you see that ladder above? It is the other half of this ladder and I added shelves to create my own ladder display shelves!

Ladder Shelves

74 replies
  1. Katie @ Not Just Decorating
    Katie @ Not Just Decorating says:

    Those are so cute. I love frugal projects that look expensive!

    I just repurposed an old window into a menu board on my blog if you want to check it out.

    Ps- I'm your newest follower.

  2. kathie
    kathie says:

    They are adorable! I saw the ballard ones, and with the price thought that they would be huge… but they're not, just the price is huge 🙂 Love yours!

  3. Stephanie
    Stephanie says:

    I can not even tell the difference of which one is yours and which one is Ballards! Darn girlfriend, you are talented. Why do they think people want to spend that kind of money on an accessory? Blows my mind. Great job.

  4. marty (A Stroll Thru Life)
    marty (A Stroll Thru Life) says:

    They look fabulous. I really like them. Your colors and antiqueing are perfect. Good for you. Very creative. Hugs, Marty

  5. Stephanie at Buttermilk Hill
    Stephanie at Buttermilk Hill says:

    Wow, great job! I think I like them better than the one from the catalog, and the price is fantastic! 🙂 Thanks for the dose of inspiration. ~Stephanie at Buttermilk Hill

  6. Debbie
    Debbie says:

    How cool and very clever. You did a great job, without that hefty ballard price tag. Thanks for your opinion on my hairy situation lol!

  7. justkiddingaroundatlanta
    justkiddingaroundatlanta says:

    They look beautiful,and you've gotta love savings like that!! I'm your newest follower, too!

    Aimee @ Justkiddingaroundatlanta

  8. Marie @ Sally Lee by the Sea
    Marie @ Sally Lee by the Sea says:

    Love your pears – beautiful! I'm a new follower from Metamorphosis Monday at Between Naps on the Porch.

    Have a great week!

    Marie @ Sally Lee by the Sea

    A blog for those who love everything about the coastal lifestyle…Shopping. Decorating. Crafts. Travel.

  9. Gloria (The Little Red House with the White Porch)
    Gloria (The Little Red House with the White Porch) says:

    Greetings! I haven't visited in a while. You did a FANTASTIC job here! Plus, saved a fortune. Good for you!
    Best regards,

  10. Kristy @ Next to Heaven
    Kristy @ Next to Heaven says:

    Wow- at first I thought… LUCKEEE! But now I see more talent than luck! You did a great job on these… plus I am on a pear fix right now… my new kitchen will be full of them! nHave you seen the basic grey paper?

  11. Debbie
    Debbie says:

    This was a great project to link up and share…so glad you did. It really gives us gals the foresight to think outside the box! Thank you. Debbie

  12. Funky Junk Interiors
    Funky Junk Interiors says:

    Wow, perfect! The glazing really took it to the next level. Outstanding outcome!

    And you are so right on. You need to paint brighter if you plan to use glaze, otherwise you loose alot of colour. Nice call!


  13. michelle
    michelle says:

    Those are amazing!!! I can't believe that they are that much either at Ballard Design!! Yours are actually better! Found you at Funky Junk Interiors!!!

  14. Colleen @ MuralMaker&More
    Colleen @ MuralMaker&More says:

    Okay, so now I have to search high and low for some pears in the thrift stores! Seriously though, they turned out spectacular!

    I really love how you blended the colors too. I think you got a better result because of it. Sometimes acrylics can be a little too 'true to color', you know? The blending makes it look more high end.

    Would love for you to stop by tomorrow and link up to Passion for Paint!

  15. Robyn
    Robyn says:

    OH HOW very AWESOME! GREAT job! They both look fabulous on that incredible ladder! BTW, I'm have a fun CSN gift certificate on my blog, I'd love for you to stop by if you have a moment. 😉

  16. JHill
    JHill says:

    This was one of my favorite projects from last week's Mad Skills party, and I will be featuring it on my blog this morning!

  17. MONICA
    MONICA says:

    Those look great! Many years ago my mom used to do ceramics as a hobby.. I remember how she’d stain patina on the items. I’ve never done it, only the times I watched her. I wonder if I could pull it off. They are so lovely!

  18. Colleen Taylor
    Colleen Taylor says:

    I’ve seen those in Ballards & Yes can’t agree more, outrageously priced! These are wonderful, great job on the painting…now to just find something like this! Great Post Brittany & thank you!


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