Slowly but surely, I am trying to make our little rental a place we can call home! I’ve been so used to moving every year that I never got around to decorating, but this little condo we are in is a great place and we are planning on staying until Mike finished Grad School. I finally put my foot down and said, “Self, you can’t sit here complaining about the badly painted white walls anymore and do nothing about it.” Now that our family pictures have been taken, I no longer had an excuse for no photos on the walls. Well, maybe the rule about just using picture nails, but I tossed that rule out the window. I’ll settle with the landlord later on that…
First I bought a 16x20 frame at Goodwill intending on just using that, but it was thin and wasn’t taking spray paint very well :) So, I hauled Mike to Home Depot on his fall break and we picked out some beautiful primed MDF molding. To figure out how much you need, figure out the measurement of your inside frame size (15x19) and add the width of your molding to each measurement, and then add all 4 sides together. So, with my 4” molding, my measurements were 19+19+23+23= length, plus a few inches for the saw blade width. Ask me why I am reminding you to account for the saw blade ;)
When you are cutting your molding, cut at 45 degrees and make sure all the angles are the same- especially with decorative molding- so the different details of the wood match up.
When the pieces are all cut, assemble them into your frame. I used wood glue, staples, and an L-bracket to secure my corners.
There will undoubtedly be minor imperfections, so use a wood filler (I used the Elmer’s brand in a squeezable tube) to fill in the “seams.” You can find wood filler in lots of different wood colors, I just had this one on hand. Once it is dry, sand it smooth, clean off any dust, and paint the frame in the color of your choice.
I went with white, because someday, I will have walls in a color! Planning ahead ;)
Lucky for me, I had that old Goodwill frame on hand for the glass, but I know you can buy replacement glass at Hobby Lobby too. During the whole process of finding frames for all our pictures, one of the 8x10 glass pieces broke… and I knew that if I glued the 16x20 glass to the frame, if it ever broke I’d be in a world of hurt. Also, our family is still growing and I will be switching out photos at least once a year. The solution was to use 1/8” mirror clips on the back of the frame.
I had to buy new screws that were the right depth for my frame so they wouldn’t go poking through the back, but the clips and screws together were still very cheap. First I layed down the photo, glass, then backing (also came with the old frame, but it isn’t necessary) and then I screwed the clips on. This way it will be really easy to switch out photos.
Attach picture hangers that will hold your size and weight frame, and hang! I used a few big saw-tooth hangers, but you can do something more secure than that :)
I’m so excited with how our little family photo wall gallery is coming along, but I still have a ways to go. I’ll show you the finished product as soon as I have one!
Have a great weekend!