So I teased you guys with last week with this image of some custom frames we built two weekends ago, and I know you are dying inside to see how we did it. Well hold on to your britches, I’m about to give you a full-blown tutorial. I know, I know, you have never been more excited in your life.
But in all seriousness, you should be excited about this if you have custom sized pictures or posters you want to hang, but don’t want to pay the hefty price tag that comes with going to Michael’s or Hobby Lobby. It was pretty easy, and although they aren’t perfect for this OCD-chick, the hubby is quite happy with the way his frames turned out. And we were both happy about the $80 we probably saved in DIYing them!
So here we go:
- Primed trim (get more than you think you need for bad cuts)
- Flat L-brackets for the corners
- Short screws (make sure they aren’t longer than your trim is thick)
- Wood filler
- Foam board (to back your poster/print/picture)
- Adhesive spray
- MitreBox & Saw
- Staple Gun
The first step is to measure the object in which you want to frame. In our case, the posters were 17″ x 32″, so we knew the inside of our frame needed to measure slightly smaller to cover the entire poster. We decided to make our frames 16″ x 31″ each to give us room to attach the poster on the back.
Then we cut the primed trim. We knew we would be making 45° cuts for the corners, so we made the first cut on the end. Then we measured 16″ from the inside and made a mark. From that mark, we made another 45° in the opposite direction of the first cut. Like this:
We used a mitre box for all of our cutting because we don’t have a mitre saw. While our cuts weren’t perfect or completely even, the mitre box worked for what we needed.
The great thing about mitre boxes is they have the angles on them, so it’s very easy to use. You can’t tell to well in this picture, but there are slots for 90°, 60°, 45° and 30°.
We made four pieces at 16″ long for the top and bottom of each frame. Then we did the same thing, but instead of 16″ between each angle, we measured out 31″. That left us with the sides, tops and bottoms for each frame.
And here is our actual frame layed-out. And yes, I use our dog cage as a work station. I get more use out of it than the dogs do.
After you make all the cuts, use the flat L-brackets to hold the pieces together. At first we attempted to use wood glue before putting the brackets on, but it was hard to clamp together because the pieces were angled. The L-brackets by themselves seem to work well enough. And a side note, the brackets came with screws, but they were longer than our trim was thick, so we bought some shorter ones to prevent them from poking through to the front.
Put the L-brackets on each corner on the back of the trim and don’t worry about any small gaps because you can fill them in with wood glue later.
After all your brackets are screwed on, you will want to fill in the gaps, let the wood filler dry and then sand them down to be even. I used to be very stingy with the wood filler, but I have learned that the more generous you are with it, the better it turns out in the end.
After sanding down all the corners to make the frame look like one piece, we used our Rustoleum flat black spray paint and gave the frames two good coats. I will admit that my husband is better at spray painting than I am, but he says it’s because he was in a graffiti gang. I’m not quite sure I believe him.
We let the paint dry overnight to make sure it was completely dry before attaching the posters to the back. I don’t have any pictures, but we bought foam board that was big enough to leave room on each side of the poster and used adhesive spray to mount the poster to the board. Once we let the spray paint dry, we flipped over the frame and foam board and used our staple gun to attach them.
I had to do a little touch up on the spray paint after we used the staple gun, but it was really easy to do with a foam brush and paper plate. Just spray the paint really close to the plate so it puddles a little, then use the foam brush to apply it to the spots that need touch up. After that, you are ready to hang your frames!
And yes, I censored the pictures for the blog, but rest assured knowing that the B-word resides ever-so proudly in our office. Thank goodness that is a place not often seen by visitors.
Have you ever made any custom-sized frames? How did you do it?
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