Monday, September 19, 2016

DIY: Build an amazing (custom size) vintage frame in 4 steps

I've spent months looking for the perfect vintage frame for an incredible lithograph that was gifted to me by a very loving girl I met in a trip, it's interesting because that travel triggered a whole bunch of changes in my life which make it even more special so I couldn't just settle with any old frame I could find, in addition to the fact that the size of he lithograph was not particularly common.

I was resigned to the fact that I'd need to order a customized frame that hopefully would come close to the idea that I had in my head but luckily some days ago I joined my boyfriend in one of his "excursions" to buy wood supplies and found a very interesting molding that kept me thinking for some days until I realized that I should definitely build my own frame and that's how this tutorial was born (and in case you are wondering it was named after my friend)

DIY Boutaina's Vintage Frame

Difficulty: Easy-Medium
Time required: A couple of afternoons -if you follow all the steps (including the optional ones)
Supplies needed:

  1. A strip of wood molding (I got mine for less than $10 USD)
  2. Anything you have to cut wood (a hand sew)
  3. Measuring tape
  4. A protractor or anything you have to measure angles
  5. Pencil
  6. Glue
  7. Clamps (not pictured)
  8. Painter tape (not pictured)
  9. (Optional) Sand paper
  10. (Optional) Picture frame hanger
  11. (Optional) Paint and a brush

Let's do this:

Step #1: Take measures & mark the wood

Before we start I just wanted to share an image of the detail in the molding I found, there were several designs to choose but this one was my favorite of all: 

So let's start by measuring the image we want to frame, remember that we'll measure the area that will be visible in our fame and not the extremes, for my frame I needed two 25 Cm's and two 35 Cm's wood strips.

Once that we have those values we'll start marking the wood just make sure to leave some space before the initial and final mark. (I strongly recommend to mark the back of the molding)

I marked my 25 Cm's and placed the protractor on the end mark doing a 45° angle from the base

I traced a line from the end mark following the ruler direction.

You'll do the same for the initial mark, and you'll get something like shown in the image below, this step must be repeated for the 3 other sides of the frame.

Step #2: Cut it

Now that you have all your wood marked let's use the hand sew to cut it, you just need to follow the lines traced in the previous step:

Once  you cut all, put them together as if you were building the frame and make sure that all the corners form 90° angles, if needed adjust the edges until it's good to go.

Step #3: Glue glue glue

Let's put this together by pouring some glue on the edges of the 4 wood strips:

Let it dry for a minute:

And now put them together, you might have some glue coming out of the junctures, clean it before it dries.

When all the corners are ready let it dry for a couple of minutes and then place the clamps and let them there for at least 12 hours.

Step #4: Add the vintage vibe (optional)

By this time your frame will be ready, but if you want to add the vintage mood that I put in mine just keep reading:

Start by painting your frame, I applied two coats of white paint.

As you recall, my wood strip had a design engraved, and when I painted the wood strips the engraved was partially covered, so I used a pin to remove the paint from that area, a needle can do the trick too.

To give it an old mood I used the sand paper, just some touches here and there:

Once done I placed the lithograph on the back and secured it with the painter tape.
(if you want it for a wall just add a picture hanger on the back)

And voilá, your custom sized-vintage frame is ready!

I probably took waay to many pictures but just wanted it to be easy to follow, the process is not difficult at all and it's great that now you'll be able to frame anything by a fraction of the market price and with a unique design.

Hope you liked today's project and hopefully you'll feel motivated to create your own, or at least, order your customized frames for all that wall art that has been waiting to be exposed. have a good week and we'll catch up next week!

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