The days of paying high prices for picture and poster frames are over.
I only shop at sensibly priced stores
and was shocked at the prices of frames roughly 22″ by 26″…..
I’m talking about flat black frames with a white matte.
We can do better….
and even if we have trouble mitering corners.
The days of those embarrassing, ill-fitting miters are over, too.
For a flat-type frame….you’ll need:
Lattice molding – sold by the linear foot
Plywood for the backing – I used 1/4 inch
Sandpaper – 100-150 grit
Adhesive to apply artwork to the backing – Spray adhesive suggested
Paint for the frame
Miter box or saw
Step 1: Obtain a backing and cut it to the desired size.
These frames are going to sit on a 3 and 1/2 inch ledge with other items layered on top…so they need to be as thin as possible. I used the back side of some left-over beadboard..which is about 1/4 inch thick. And, mine were big….22 by 26.
Step 2: Place artwork over the backing and attach.
This step will be different for different projects. Some artwork can be stuck to the backing using spray glue or other desired adhesive. I used old maps so I could polyurethane the maps to the backing to create a waxy look. I did cut down the size of the maps, but left at least 6 inches overhang all the way around (to wrap to the back in a later step).
Then, I poured polyurethane onto the center of the map and spread it with a brush. Once the paper began to pucker, I used my hands to rub the poly around in order to smooth out unwanted bubbles, bumps, and wrinkles. The dry poly will give the look of a faux matte similar to Modge Podge. So just FIY….for use now……or later.
I know…….it looks like a real mess. But, have faith……
See how the center is covered, but the edges are dry (below)?
Lay flat and allow to completely dry. How long…. depends on the temperature and humidity, but mine took a few hours.
Step 3: Attach artwork on the front (and back)
If your artwork is a perfect fit to the backing, then you are one step ahead of me. I was concerned that I couldn’t get a clean cut using scissors, so I chose option #2. The wrap…
Once the poly was dry, I wrapped the map around to the back and taped it down. Trimming or wrapping would work for me because my pics will set on a ledge, but if the picture is hanging on a wall…..trimming to the edge of the frame might be a better option. This way the frame is more apt to hang flat against the wall.
Step 4: Miter cut and attach the frame
By now, all DIYers should have the artwork attached to the backing and are ready to cut the frame.
Are you really prepared to amaze your artwork admirers with perfectly cut mitered corners?
Of course!…….. And, hopefully, that’s exactly what will happen.
But……. just.. in… case they aren’t perfectly cut….
I have a trick for you. Wink. Wink.
So, go ahead……
……bravely launch into the deep ……..
……and miter cut your hearts out.
I got your back.
Start by measuring the length of the frame sides and cut 45 degree angles at each corner.
I’m not kidding.
Even if the miter cut
turns out like this (right)….
Not to worry.
Step 5: Fix those wayward miter cuts
First…. glue the frame to the artwork/backing ensemble and allow to completely dry. I always weigh down the edges to make sure the frame is completely secure and to prevent bowing of the backing or the frame.
Once the glue is dry, repair the miter by filling the spaces with wood filler. I use wood filler instead of caulk because wood filler can be sanded. If there is a big gap, apply one coat and let dry. Then apply a second coat. Allow to completely dry. Even after it has dried and been lightly sanded, it could still look like a scary mess……
….but it’s not.
This is almost totally repaired after only one application of wood filler and a light sanding. I will add a tiny bit more in one corner…smooth it out…and allow to dry. Then sand lightly…very lightly…. a second time.
Step 6: Paint
Tape up the artwork and paint the frame with your favorite paint and color. I used chalk paint in charcoal black (below – right).
Step 7: Display and enjoy
This style is good for a basement or youth room…. especially since it will likely change as the youth matures. But, for now, it is fun, whimsical, and original.
…….and with the money I saved on the frames and artwork….
…….I get to buy a silk dress.
…….It was actually that much in savings….
…….Can you say
Until next time,
Please…..don’t forget to PIN……
How to Make the Oversized Letters (instructions here)