Yep, I painted a clock directly on the wall in my kitchen! It works too!
I will be honest, this project was a little time consuming. Although, it was a lot easier than I thought it would be and well worth the effort. I used contact paper for number stencils and the big round circle, basic satin wall paint and an inexpensive wall clock kit for the clock itself! I have been working on this project for the last few weeks and did a few numbers every couple of days.
Before I go into the details of how I did it, I really want you to see what started it all, Sharon and Ozzy Osborn’s living room:
Amazing isn’t it!!
When I ran across the picture of Sharon and Ozzy Osborn’s living room in my June (2011) issue of Architectural Digest my jaw dropped when I saw the breathtaking antique worn clock over the fireplace. The clock looked like it was hand painted directly on the wall (it’s from an antique store in Beverly Hills). To me, the clock is such an amazing focal point of the room and I’m sure it’s a great conversation piece. Funny though, this isn’t the first time I’ve been inspired by the Prince of Darkness. I painted all of my bathroom cabinets matte black after seeing cabinets in “The Osborn’s” reality show about 8 or 10 years ago.
After seeing Ozzy’s clock, I knew instantly that I finally had a solution for my boring kitchen wall. I immediately started going through pictures of old antique large clocks on Google Images and I found this one:
I loved this New Orleans clock and the color combination worked perfectly for my kitchen, so I started a plan and drew what I wanted on paper. Using the New Orleans clock for inspiration I decided to changed up a few things including the change to roman numerals, the border and I decided not to crackle my wall (I thought about it though!) I know they sell vinyl wall clocks, but I wanted the worn and old look that you just can’t get with vinyl. I could have done this on a piece of wood as well and hung it, but I really loved the idea of it being directly on the wall.
The next thing I did was to determine how big I wanted the clock to be on my wall and how it would be positioned. Important to note that I got really lucky that my clock size and numbers just happened to be the exact right size for the clock kit to tell the right time. If you do this project, get the kit first and read the instructions to be sure. I had originally just planned on using the clock hands and just setting it to 5:00 PM (it’s 5:00 somewhere).
In determining my clock size, I used tape to make a square of how tall I wanted it and how wide and then I measured. I determined that my clock was going be 32 inches across, and 32 inches tall. In pencil, I marked the top, sides and bottoms with a line so it could guide me later.
Next, I got out my basic dollar store contact paper. I bought two rolls for this project:
I then unrolled the contact paper about 40 inches and then unrolled the second roll 40 inches and attached about them about 3 inches to make it a larger sheet. I did this because I needed my stencil to be wide than the width of a standard roll contact paper. Like this:
I then needed to draw a circle on the contact paper so I cut a long rectangular piece of poster board 17 inches (Half of what my width and height were going to be plus 1 inch). (please ignore the 32 written on my poster board stick, it was a screw up and should have said 16!!):
I then measured and drew a line on my poster board guide for 16 inches and 15 inches. I then put a magazine in the center under my large contact paper and put at tack through the end of my poster board guide, contact paper, and into the magazine right in the center. I held a pen in the 16 inch cut that I cut halfway and gently drew my circle while I lightly pushed the poster board guide around:
I then drew my line at the 15 inch mark. (If you’re not making a border, you can just make your circle).
I then carefully and precisely cut each line. I kept the outer paper as well as that served as my stencil for the outer border.
I needed to paint my inner circle first, so I put up the stencil that is the border ring. I made sure it was attached really good by going over it with the edge of a credit card. Yikes, another screw up here! The white circle SHOULD be brown (long story!) I then painted the inner circle brown.
I then put the outer contact piece onto the wall (stencil for the border). I also cut the round inner circle contact paper about a 2 inches in (didn’t need the whole circle) and attached on the wall as well and lined everything up. Again, I smoothed with edge of credit card before I painted my border with a black satin latex paint.
The next thing I did is that I created all my roman numeral numbers on the computer in the font Niagara Solid at size 550. I printed all of my numbers on 8.5 x 11 removable adhesive labels.
If had a Cricket or Silhouette, my time would have been cut in half. I had to cut each one with small sewing scissors. But first, I cut a square around each number and the pull the backing off and attached on top of contact paper. I wanted my stencil to work real well since I have a light orange peel finish on my wall. Then I cut out the number… Each number…
After I cut out my number, I placed it an inch below a predetermined little spot that I made on my clock based on figuring the circumference of the circle divided by 12. I used a cloth tape measure to figure out each spot around the clock (Mine was around 8 inches apart). You can see my dot below:
I then placed my number stencil in the right spot (some are angled or suppose to be upside down) and I used the edge of a credit card to really get it flush. I then lightly with very little pressure around stencil edges brushed on latex paint. Sometimes I just brushed with very little paint to make it look worn.
After 5 minutes, I took an old t-shirt and pressed it on the painted number (stencil still on). I then wet the t-shirt very lightly and carefully brush off paint until I got the desired look I wanted. I then removed the stencil and wiped over and over with a lightly damp t-shirt to even up edges and distress a little more. Yes, some paint will come up and get all over but I kept wiping it until it was gone. If you have any paint seap from the stencil, wiping your numbers after 5 or 10 minutes with a damp cloth will even it out.
I painted my “New Orleans” and other lettering in the center of the clock by free hand.
The last step for me was to install the wall clock kit. I purchased my Clocke Shoppe wall clock kit at Hobby Lobby for $29.99.
The instructions made it so easy. This is what it looks like and the small round box is just mounted with screws on the wall in the center of the clock and you add a AA battery.
The clock kit comes with vinyl lettering that I did not use. My only problem was that the clock hands were too long. So I just snipped the tips with metal clippers to where I needed them. I painted the clock kit battery case the same dark brown so it wouldn’t stand out. I also painted the clock hands with silver Testors Enamel Paint that works great on plastic and metal. My husband installed the clock kit for me.
Well, I think this is by far the longest tutorial I have ever written! I have to say that it was well worth the tediousness and time! But, it only cost me about $30.00, so I am very happy! I am so thrilled that everything worked out so well, otherwise I would be making a call to get my wall floated(made that call before).
If any of you are thinking about doing this project and have any questions at all, please let me know! Again, if you are going to do this project, please read the clock kit instructions first to be sure that you create the right size for the clock hands to tell the right time!
As always, thank you so much for your comments, notes and emails! I just love hearing from you and can’t thank you enough!
Have a wonderful week and I have another project ready to be posted later this week.