Introduction: Picture Frames From Scrap Materials

About: I work voluntarily to help develop the community where I live. I like to explore new areas and experiment with making things myself. I am extremely passionate about making the change to a future where we real…

This is a very quick and easy way to make some nice looking picture frames from basic materials.

The tools I used were just a saw and a mitre block. You may need a hammer if you do some of the steps I mention, but I didn't. Also some small tacks and wood glue are needed.

Step 1: The Backing Board

These picture frames are ones I made to create collages on but you can do them for photos as well. They use minimal materials which are highlighted in bold in this instructable.

First, I got some board that you get from the bottom of drawers or the back of shelving units, the flexible kind. You can use others like a piece of wood. They can easily be cut to size with a saw.

You'll probably want to work out the space where the picture will go and measure that. I just cut a few pieces to this size then marked 2cm inside the edges as you can see from the pencil lines. This is where the frame will be fixed later. If you want it for a photo, measure the photo and add 4cm to the length of each side for the size of the board.

As the frame will be glued (or tacked) on later, it's a good idea to fix your picture on next so that it meets up with the lines as it could be tricky to fix it on once the frame is in the way.

Step 2: Making the Frame

I wanted to use some wood that was neither too wide or too deep as it would have been too much for a small picture. For this I already the slats from a baby's cot - the bars if you like, which were just right.

To make a nice looking frame, it's best to join the four sides at 45º angles. For this you are best using a mitre block, which are cheap. I found mine in a skip, like pretty much everything I use!

You can see that the mitre block is designed to make 45º cuts so place the wood in there and cut a piece off near to the end first. Then, measure the length of the edges you made in pencil and then, from the shorter edge of the wood, measure that distance and mark it off. you'll then need to cut the angle opposite to the first or it won't fit!

You can then use this first piece to match the next one by placing it on top and marking off the line.

Then, measure the other two edges and cut likewise. Sand down the edges where you sawed through and they should be ready to go.

A tip for using the mitre block - to get the angles as perfect as possible, when you put the saw in the groove, make sure it is lying straight as it's possible that you won't cut it exactly at 45º and they won't join together nicely. If this happens, you can try sanding down a bit of the cut part to correct the angle.

Step 3: Fixing the Frame On

You can see I have the four pieces ready and it doesn't take much time or trouble at all. As long as you have good quality, identical pieces of wood, it should look professional straight away.

Then, to fix it on I used wood glue to put around the edge of the board and some on the ends of the long pieces so that they will glue to the short pieces and give it more security that it will stay together. Wood glue is important as it is very strong and made for this kind of job.

Then set the frame on and push them to adjust it so that they're all in the right place.

Carefully place somewhere to try and it will be ready in 24 hours.

To make it even more secure, you could also turn it over and hammer in some short, thin tacks through the back of the board but be careful as sometimes this can make the pieces come apart.

It's then ready to use and you could create a hanger by tacking on a small wire hanger or simply use those double-sided sticky strips.

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