This post is all about how to build a picture frame out of barn wood. My aunt’s birthday was fast approaching this last August and my mom purchased a print for her of a gorgeous old barn painted by a local artist (D.L. Housman). It only seemed natural then for me to take some barn wood and build her a frame to produce some really pretty wall art. The barn on our property is really my aunt and mom’s barn just as much (if not more) then me and Joe’s barn – my aunt and mom grew up here when it was still in its prime and helped their folks (my grandparents) milk cows, bring in hay and garden their entire childhoods. So we really didn’t even discuss who was going to frame her print out and what wood I was going to use to build it!
I decided to use plexi glass for all of the obvious reasons: its a lot more durable then glass and quite a bit lighter in weight too. I had a piece cut to the exact size of the print. I really tossed the idea around of using four different pieces of wood for the frame but in the end I decided that was just a bit too crazy and would draw the eye away from the print. I chose a 1×4 that was fully dry and very light and long enough to make the entire frame. Grandpa left behind some beautiful hard wood as well but I wanted something with as little weight to it as possible.
The foam board that came with the print was larger then the print itself so I laid the print down exactly in the center with the plexi glass over it (making a sandwich) then I went ahead and added a little piece of tape in every corner just to make sure it would STAY PUT in the direct center of the foam board for the time being.
Step 1: Putting the Frame Together
Now, it was time to build my frame! I decided to miter the corners so I cut my top and bottom boards to the longest measurement then set my saw at 45 degrees and nipped off each corner. With the boards laid where I wanted them on the print I was then able to get my measurement for the two side boards. I cut them with the longest edge to the longest measurement.
Then I took my boards downstairs and cleaned them up a bit. I sanded them down with my orbital palm sander with fine grit sand paper to take the splinters off and make the saw marks really stand out. From there I flipped it over and used steel brackets to screw the mitered corners together. Then I attached my “sandwich” first making very sure it was straight and then putting in multiple little screws gently into the foam board to keep it in place. The foam board really gives and bends but I didn’t put the screws in real tight, just snug along every side. (You can see in the picture that the foam board bent over and around the plexi glass, making everything secure.)
I almost put a wire across the back to hang it from but I hate how those get saggy and really, we’ve all spent way too much time running a print up and down the wall trying to get that wire hung up on a screw. So I just put on a big picture hanger at the top of the frame, making sure to bend it out a bit to bypass the foam board and allow the entire print to hang tight and flush to the wall.
Step 2: Completion and Hanging
When it comes to prints I’ve always been a firm believer that the frame should give the print a chance to shine but also be wall art by itself. This was the first time I ever framed a print out and I was really nervous when I got started! But, all in, I think it came out really nice and provided some lovely wall art for my aunt’s home!
Make sure and check out the other beautiful wall art from the rest of the Farmhouse Hens, they are absolutely fabulous!