If you've recently moved and/or don't have a lot of art (or any) on your walls, on of the best and most affordable places to start is your local thrift store. While it may seem passé, trendy, or even silly, trust us when we tell you: thrift stores are virtual treasure troves when it comes to art you can hang on the wall.
Landscape Paintings for Lovers of the Pastoral and Bucolic Arts
Thrift stores usually have plenty of landscape art. From floral fields to forests, mountainous musings to valley views, and more, you can find landscape art from every imaginable season and era when you delve into the back of your local Goodwill, Salvation Army, or any one-off, mom-and-pop thrift stop.
The Utterly Wild: The Kind of Art You Can Only Find at Thrift Stores
If you're the kind of person who loves something a little wonky, anachronistic, or just extraordinarily "out there," in your wall hangings, the thrift store should be your first stop.
You'll find everything from the Muppets playing poker to Jackson Pollock-esque pieces that actually beautify the home. There's no shortage of oddities in thrift stores and other resale outlets.
Portraits of People You Never Knew and Other Thrift Store Paintings
Maybe some of the coolest — or most haunting — types of thrift store paintings are portraits of people you may or may not know. Perhaps you'll find a novice or even well done portrait of a famous person like Dolly Parton. But chances are, you may also likely find portrait art of family members that were cleared out of a home at some point. These are often beautifully done, and you might be wise to pick up a painting like this simply because it is well done, offers beautiful coloring, and best of all, because you can tell visitors to your home it's a revered person from your family lineage.
Other portraits that are very popular in thrift stores of those of religious figures: Jesus, La Virgen de Guadalupe, or the whole manger scene. These can be great finds whether you're religious or not, simply because they are great art.
Other Thrift Store Finds: Wall Hangings of All Kinds
Thrift Stores are loaded with all manner of mirrors, candelabras, shadowboxes, curtain rods, and wall fixtures, which can all be easily mounted to your wall using the YOUHANGIT Designer Kit — the hands-free YOULEVEL comes especially in handy when trying to level a candelabra or other unique sconce or other eccentric piece of wall art.
The Best Way to Hang Thrift Store Art
If the art you find is already framed and still has its original wire hanger in good shape, you're good to go — you'll simply hang it using one (or two, depending on size and weight) YOUHANGIT devices to make your mark, and one (or two, depending on size and weight) Sexy Metal Hooks to hang the painting once you've made your marks with the YOUHANGIT(s).
If, on the other hand, the artwork you picked up is a little shabby in the "how to hang" department, you can affix your own wire hanger using D-rings and wire purchased from a frame shop or from Michaels.
In some instances, you may need to hang using keyholes or sawtooth hangers — you can pick these up at most any hardware store — the Hillman Group makes very affordable art hanging hardware, which is available at Lowe's. For more on how to install these onto the back of your art, check out our instructional blog about hanging art on slanted walls — there's an instructional there on how to install keyholes with ease.
Using Thrift Store Paintings for Their Awesome Frames
Sometimes, the best thing about a thrift store painting is the frame it's in. Don't let a poorly painted piece of artwork detract from a frame you could use for something else, such as a DIY home project like this one. Likewise, if you are a painter yourself, you may find a killer frame at the thrift that will work wonderfully for something you've painted yourself. Rather than spending a fortune on a brand new frame, head to your local thrift joint to find some incredible art frames for your own work or that of a friend or family member.