How to Make Custom Odd Shaped Frames

Written by rhondar
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How to Make Custom Odd Shaped Frames
Picture frames are a fun and easy project. (frame. finished gold frame image by L. Shat from Fotolia.com)

Making your own picture frames is a fun and easy project. They make great gifts for many occasions and can be completely customised. Rather than making plain, square picture frames, try making frames in odd shapes instead. Make a fish frame, a flower frame, or any other shape that you wish.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • Wood
  • Paper
  • Pencil
  • Cardstock
  • Scissors
  • Clamp
  • Reciprocating saw
  • Drill
  • Large drill bit
  • Sandpaper
  • Paint or stain
  • Plexiglas
  • Glass cutter
  • E-6000 glue

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Draw your shape with pencil and paper to finalise your design. Draw both the shape of the outside of the frame as well as the hole through which the photo will be visible.

  2. 2

    Transfer the final design to heavy cardstock. Either redraw the shape or cut it out of the paper and trace it onto the cardstock.

  3. 3

    Cut the shape out of the cardstock. This will be your pattern for making the frame.

  1. 1

    Trace the pattern onto a block of wood.

  2. 2

    Clamp the wood securely to a work bench. Use a reciprocating saw to cut the exterior shape of the wood.

  3. 3

    Drill a large hole in the centre of the frame where the photo will appear. Cut the centre out with a reciprocating saw starting from the drilled hole.

  1. 1

    Sand all cut edges and finish the wood as desired. It can be painted, stained, sealed or left raw.

  2. 2

    Use the cardstock template to trace the interior shape of the frame onto the paper backing on the plexiglas.

  3. 3

    Use a glass cutter to carefully score along the line. Trace along each line 5 or 6 times. Break the shape loose by applying pressure.

  4. 4

    Peel the paper backing off of the Plexiglas. Use a bead of E-6000 glue around the edge of the Plexiglas and secure it inside the picture frame.

  5. 5

    Cut a piece of cardstock larger than the photo hole. Apply glue around three sides of the cardstock and place over top of the hole, leaving the top side open for sliding photos in and out.

Tips and warnings

  • Add a wooden easel to the back of the fame to make it stand on a desk, or use picture hanging hardware to mount on the wall.
  • If designing a frame for desktop use, take into consideration that the bottom edge should be fairly flat so that it rests evenly on a surface.
  • Always wear safety glasses when working with saws or any other power tools.

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