DIY Wood Picture Frames

Written by mark spowart
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DIY Wood Picture Frames
DIY wood frames are great to display your favourite pictures in. (wood frame image by Dumitrescu Ciprian from

Nothing shows off a beautiful picture better than a nice wood picture frame. Wood picture frames can be expensive to buy, especially as they increase in size, however with a little bit of work at home, you can build wood picture frames yourself. Not only will you be able to show off your skills as a photographer but also as a carpenter.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Frame wood
  • Corner clamps
  • Mitre box
  • Saw
  • Correct size of glass for frame
  • Picture
  • Mat

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  1. 1

    Measure the size of the picture you want to frame, and decide if you will be matting the picture or using the picture alone. A mat is a border that goes around the picture. Some photographers like to use mats to further enhance their pictures. If you are framing a 5- by 7-inch picture and using a mat, the frame you will need to construct will by 8 by 10 inches to accommodate both the picture and the mat. This size will be the interior size of your frame.

  2. 2

    Decide on the thickness of the frame. Whichever size you choose, add the thickness to your interior size. So if you pick a 1-inch wood frame for an 8- by 10-inch picture, you will need two lengths of wood at 12 inches and two lengths of wood at 10 inches.

  3. 3

    Cut the corners of the each length of wood at a 45-degree angle, using the mitre box. Place the two corners together to ensure a correct fit.

  4. 4

    Apply wood glue to the edges of corner cuts, and use a corner clamp to hold the pieces together. Do this with the other two pieces of the frame. Allow the joint to completely dry for one to two hours.

  5. 5

    Sand any rough edges on the frame, then stain or varnish it. Allow it to dry. Add a clear coat if you want your frame to have a shine to it, and allow it to dry.

  6. 6

    Place the glass and your print into the frame, place the backing board into the frame, and secure it in place with wood staples or small finishing nails. Attach the hanging hardware.

Tips and warnings

  • Purchase wood for your frame that is specially prepared for frames. This type of moulding has the recessed groove for the glass already in the wood.

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