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A few weeks ago I posted some Peter Rabbit printables. In the post, I mentioned that the frame I used was made from a dismantled stretched canvas, promising to share the tutorial in a future post.
Well, uh. I guess this is that future post.
(Wow, that’s one clumsy introduction to a DIY tutorial.)
Because today I’d like to share a simple way you can make your own wooden frames using one of these little guys:
This initial idea for this project came about as the result of my own clumsiness. One day I ripped a hole in a canvas (R.I.P. to the pretty art that I destroyed). As I was dismantling it to throw it out (the canvas couldn’t be recycled, but the wood frame could), I noticed that the frame underneath looked kinda nice and might just work as a picture frame.
After a bit of experimentation (translation: I totally messed up the first attempt), this is how the frames turned out:
What I like about these frames is that they require no real construction as the frame shape is already made. All you have to do is add some paint or stain then stick your print to the back of the frame.
With that said, there are two things to keep in mind with these frames.
Firstly, they’re not as sturdy as regular frames. While they’re great for hanging prints on the wall, you’ll probably want to keep them out of reach of kids and pets. Secondly, once stuck to the frame, removing the artwork without ripping/damaging the paper can be difficult. It’s possible if you go slowly, but to be on the safe side, I mostly use these frames for printable wall art. That way, if the paper rips, it’s not the end of the world as I can just re-print the art.
- A stretched canvas. I bought a pack of two for $5 from Kmart here in Australia. I imagine you can find similarly priced ones at any art or craft store. If you need to make a few frames, you can save money by buying a multi-pack (like this one, which works out at roughly $1.50 per canvas).
- Double-sided tape
- Paintbrush and wood stain (I used a colour similar to this one).
- A piece of art, printed on thicker paper/card (at least 250gsm) or stuck to a piece of cardboard. Using thicker paper stops the art from wrinkling in the frame. If you need some art, check out the free printables section – you might find something you like.
To begin, flip your canvas over. Grab the canvas material and tug gently to remove it from the frame. Leave the staples in place – sometimes they’re structural and removing them makes the frame go all wonky.
Next, stain or paint your frames in the colour of your choice. I used a walnut stain (like this one), then gave the frame a light white-wash using white acrylic paint.
In my experience, the wood absorbs a lot of stain, so you might want to take that into account when deciding how much stain to use.
Once the stain is dry, flip your canvas over so that the back/underside is facing up.
Add a single strip of double-sided tape to the top of the canvas.
Line your print up, remove the backing paper from the tape, then press the print against the tape. Once it is firmly in place, add more tape to the remaining three sides of the frame, then stick the rest of the print to the frame.
(As a side note: If your print is very heavy (for example, if it’s printed on very, very thick card), you might want to use foam mounting tape instead.)
And that’s really it!
You can hang these frames in a few different ways. Velcro command strips are a good option if you need damage-free hanging. Alternatively, you can use a strong glue to attach a saw tooth hanger to the back, then mount the frames on a regular hook.