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Black Matte Spray Painted Lantern

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Learn how to transform an aged lantern into a gorgeous one – This black matte spray painted lantern is my latest thrift store makeover. I had a hard time finding an item to make over this month, but when I saw this poor, worn lantern I just wanted to take it home and make it pretty again.

Here is the lantern I found. When I saw this lantern in our local thrift shop I took a double-take before it was almost two feet tall. I liked the look and shape, but the $12.99 price tag was more than I typically spend on a thrifted item. I’m always looking for a crazy deal on decor items that can be transformed into a DIY project.

thrift store lantern

Clean the Lantern

This lantern was DIRTY! I first tried to just wipe it down with some wet paper towel, but it has caked on sticky spots. So I pulled out the Goo Be Gone. That stuff will cut through the grease and grime. I let it sit for a couple of minutes before wiping it off. Then I wiped again with a wet paper towel to remove any residual stickiness left over. If you don’t have Goo be Gone, you could try white vinegar. That usually does a great good job too.

Then I cleaned off the inside with the candles. I just used a wet paper towel it the dirt came off easily.

Tape off the Glass

Next I used painter’s tape to cover the entire area of glass. Using painter’s tape will allow your glass to be protected, but also allows you to pull the tape off easily when you’re done painting and the lantern is dry. This definitely is one of the the easiest ways to deal with spray painting around glass.

Taping Glass Off on Lantern

Spray Paint The Metal Parts

I wanted to use leftover spray paints that I had on hand. I had a cheap flat black spray paint, which I think works excellent as a primer. So I took my latern out back and gave it one coat of flat black spray paint. I let it dry about 10 minutes.

Flat Back Spray Paint as Primer

Then I used a Matte Black Paint and Primer in One spray paint. This spray paint gave beautiful coverage. I gave a light first coat on all the metal on the outside of the lantern. Matte finishes paint look glossy when they are wet but dry without a sheen.

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Matte Finish looks glossy when wet

After a couple minutes I went back and gave the lantern a quick second coat. Giving two light coats will keep the drips away. You just want to use sweeping motions, back and forth letting the painted area slightly overlap. Make sure you stop and shake the can frequently too. Spray paint is always such a breeze and definitely cost efficient on smaller decor items.

Matte Black Spray Painted Lantern

Once dry I peeled off the painter’s tape and gave the glass a good cleaning. I just love the matte paint finish on black items.

Picking the right Spray Paint

Make sure that the spray paint you pick is for the type of item you are spray painting. If you’re painting plastic patio chairs, you want a paint that is made for plastic. If you are painting an area that gets hot (bbq, fireplace, etc) make sure you use a high heat spray paint. So read the can. Picking the right spray paint will give you stronger adhesion to your painted item. After you make sure you’ve got the right product then you can have the fun of picking out the color and sheen (high gloss finish, satin finish, matte finish, etc). There are so many different options!

Well I hope you had fun checking out my matte black spray painted lantern. Now make sure to check out the rest of the teams thrift store makeovers below.

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Thrift Store Decor Tour…. Black Matte Spray Painted Lantern – Domestically Speaking DIY Chandelier Planter – My Repurposed Life Succulent Crock Planter – Petticoat Junktion (you are here) DIY Upcycled Bar Cabinet – Our Southern Home DIY Pressed Flower Art – My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia Mosaic Bowling Ball Yard Art – House Of Hawthornes Herb Themed Rustic Garden Stepladder – Organized Clutter Patriotic Serving Tray – Reinvented Delaware Upcycled Garden Pot – Shop At Blu


    1. Thanks! Yes I’m debating moving the lantern to the front porch. I’m sure it will need frequent painting out there.

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