Vintage Ceiling Tin Ideas


I have had a lifelong love affair with vintage ceiling tin. The geometric relief patterns, the multitude of chippy paint layers peeking through, along with the perfect amount of rust just make me swoon.

And despite 20+ years of scrounging for vintage treasures, I’ve only had my hands on a precious few pieces. I thought I’d share the two pieces I’ve got in my kitchen and talk a little about your options if you happen to come across some!


Years ago I came across this well-priced square in an antique shop. The beautiful peacock color and flower pattern had my name all over it. For years I’ve simply leaned it up against the wall behind my seasonal, everyday dishes, which totally worked.


But I wanted it to be on a different section of wall near my stove instead, so it needed to be hangable. Luckily I had a perfectly chippy, large framed print in the basement that was some type of hardboard. Mr. Fix-it cut the tin to fit and simply adhered it to the hardboard.



I brushed a couple coats of poly on the frame. I had already polyed the tin years ago. I hot glued two magnets to the other cool clips I had left from my Bedspring Family Photo Wall {Here}. Now I can enjoy the beauty of the framed tin by itself and use the functionality of a recipe card display when I’m cooking in my little stove corner. Yes, I’m dreaming of a carrara marble backsplash here…


Mr. Fix-it also created a vintage ceiling tin awning out of a curved piece for our kitchen.


I’ve had it up for a couple of years, but just before Christmas I took it down and gave it the attention it deserved. I sanded the whole surface of the tin to reveal more of the yellow undertones. I then scrubbed it with a nylon brush to get all the dust and grime out of the details. I finished with two coats of poly for a pretty sheen and easier dusting. I also painted the wood ends and underside wood parts the same dove grey I had just painted the walls. Now the beautiful details of the antique tin are really a showcase.


Through the years, Mr. Fix-it and I have applied vintage ceiling tin to several different pieces. It’s so patina-rich, it becomes the star of the piece and usually results in a fast sell.


This adorable hoosier top had wonderful deco-painted details on the doors, but the last door inset was beyond repair. With a little vintage tin tucked into the square using some small wood strips on the back, the adorable cupboard came back to life, and the door details were even more complemented.




This old kitchen cabinet base was ho-hum boring until we placed vintage tin into the door insets. The light blue and grey galvanized tin harmonized perfectly with the soft charcoal paint.

As the years went by I realized that if I’d sand the tin with some 100 grit and my palm sander, the years of paint colors would show through even better and there would be more surface texture. I always sand this stuff outside, because I’m sure it’s lead based paint.


For this corner cupboard, we actually added the trim on the plain, boring door front to encase the tin. The bottom of this corner cupboard needed to match the beauty of the divided glass top. I loved how it turned out…and there was actually a matched set of these:


And when I look back at these pieces and remember how many hours I put into them and what I sold them for…I’m glad I am just talking about it all now! Phew! {“Do I Miss it?” post, Here}

So if you find some vintage ceiling tin and are trying to think how you can best enjoy this treasure:

vintage ceiling tin ideas

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 vintage ceiling tin, framed

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4 thoughts on “Vintage Ceiling Tin Ideas

  1. So many great ways to use tin tiles, Lora, and I love them all (especially the one used as an awning). Thanks for linking up all of your posts with us at Vintage Charm 🙂


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