DIY Folding Screen

Updated February 21, 2017

A great way to hide something or to partition a room is with a folding screen. Basically, a folding screen is made of three panels that are hinged together. When the screen is unfolded, the panels can stand on their own and hide whatever is behind them. Folding screens are relatively easy to make on your own and, by following a few simple strategies, can be built without a lot of money.

Decisions about the screen

Folding screens can be built out of a variety of materials, in a variety of ways, for a variety of functions. You will have several things to think about if you wish to have a folding screen. Probably the most important decision you will make in this project is what you will use the screen for. If you are using it for decoration, you can make a lightweight one out of fabric. If you need it to block off an area outside, you will need to make it out of something stronger and weather-resistant, such as treated wood or metal.


Size is also an important factor when preparing to build a folding screen. Although traditional folding screens have three panels that fold into each other, the size of your screen is only limited by your space considerations. A three panel screen is good to shield a small area, but you can use a folding screen with any number of panels to partition an entire room. Just add panels and hinges.


Another great thing about a DIY folding screen is that your imagination is the only thing that limits the design and construction. So long as you can figure out a way to stand the material up to create a partition, you will be in business.

Often times, folding screens are made out of wooden frames with facing built into them. That is the most basic form of a screen and is extremely versatile (a pattern or stain can be easily painted onto the panels). You can also sandwich fabric into the wooden frames.

Another popular version of the folding screen is one made out of window shutters connected by metal hinges; what's great about using shutters is that you can open and close the slats to create different looks. You don't even need to use hinges to attach the panels; you can tie them together with string.

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About the Author

R.L. Cultrona is a San Diego native and a graduate of San Diego State University. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in theater, television and film with a minor in communications and political science. She began writing online instructional articles in June 2009.