How to Spray Paint Brass Owl Bookends...

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

I'm so glad you guys loved my stencil lamp shade I posted about yesterday, I'm really happy that I went with stenciling it instead of one of the other ideas I was considering. It's a timeless look that won't go out of style or one I won't get bored with! As promised, today I'm going to share with you another DIY adventure I took with brass owl bookends.

My husband bought the brass owl bookends for me at Christmas, said he was searching our local antique store for owls and almost gave up when he stumbled upon them! The two love birds look so sweet perched on the branch, but the brass color just wasn't my style and didn't fit with any decor we have in our home. 

They were on my shelf above my work desk in my home office, however I learned the hard way that these guys were a bit too heavy to be sitting on that shelf! Luckily, my laptop wasn't on my desk at the time the shelf came crashing down and there wasn't anything that broke that was sitting on the desk or shelf!

What was I going to do with these things? We only have a small book shelf in our computer room, so I knew they weren't going there. Even if, I still didn't love the brass color! So, this weekend I shared a photo of them on Instagram and asked how I could give them a makeover. My DIY girl Katie over at Busy Bee Kate  tweeted back that I should use some steel wool, self-etching primer, and spray paint. 

While we were out at Michaels Craft Store searching for what to do with the lamp, I looked for the items Katie mentioned. I found the steel wool, but I couldn't find any paint labeled self-etching primer. That's when I found Krylon® Brand Dual Paint + Primer, which works great for Metals, Wicker, Glass, Ceramic, Fabric, Masonry, Concrete, and Wood. Plus the can I grabbed was also a super bond, bonus! 

I took them out to the garage and my husband helped me set up a little space on his work bench so I wouldn't get the spray paint on anything but my owls! I took out the steel wool and got to work removing some of the brass. Steel wool actually comes in different textures, who knew?! You want coarse for tougher jobs like removing paint, and softer for polishing. Ladies, make sure you are wearing gloves to handle the steel wool, it's a little scratchy! Next, it was time to spray paint. 

Well, apparently I don't know the correct way to spray paint, because what I was doing was causing the paint to drip...and we don't want that. That's where my husband came in and showed me the back and forth technique, he's a pro ladies and he's all mine!

At first, he thought we should apply a second coat, but if you take a look at the heavy spraying I was doing at the bottom it looks thick and takes away the details. I loved the way the feathers were showing through and didn't want them to look too caked with paint. 

I love how they turned out and can't wait to get my hands on another item in the house that needs a spray paint makeover! They are currently sitting on the cedar chest in my office, which is probably the only thing that is going to handle the weight of these guys.

What are some home decor items you have spray painted before? 

Thanks for stopping by, have a great day! 


  1. Those are so sweet and they turned out great. I spray paint all my birdcages I get. I collect them like you do owls.

  2. They turned out beautiful, sweetie! I love them and wish you a great day. xoxo

  3. They came out great! I've actually never spray-painted a household item, although we did spray-paint some magnolia leaves gold once as part of a project I was doing for my wedding coordination program.

  4. I loved to read this post very much. It's seems like a great blog I have ever seen. Thanks for sharing some great tips about how to spray paint brass owl bookends.

  5. Why do you not use a paint sprayer ?

  6. This is really a nice and informative, containing all information and also has a great impact on the new technology. Thanks for sharing it,