I love oversized art prints. They make a statement, are great conversation starters and, well, are just plain pretty. However, frames for those oversized art prints aren’t exactly cheap.
I had this large palm print on hand and decided it would be a focal point in our master bedroom makeover. Its size—40 inches by 54 inches—is not exactly small. I looked high and low to find a reasonably priced frame for the art, but the cheapest I found was $150—and that was for a cheap-looking plastic frame.
Instead of settling for that, the husband and I made our own wall frame for about $25.
- 1/4-inch plywood or luan cut to the size of your art print (I used luan because it's lighter and cheaper—you can cut this with a circular saw at home or measure your print before going to the store and have them cut the wood for you there)
- Three 1-inch-by-2-inch-by-8-foot furring strips (you may need more or less depending on the size of your print)
- 20 feet of lattice molding (again, you may need more or less depending on the size of your print)
- Nail gun (we used this Hitachi one, but any nailer should do)
- Miter saw (we used this Dewalt one)
- Circular saw (if you don't have one, the hardware store will cut your plywood for you)
- Spackling or wood putty
- Paint or stain (whichever you prefer)
- Double-sided tape
- Small corner braces
- Picture hanging wire
- Eye screws
If you haven't already done so, cut the piece of quarter-inch plywood down to the size of your art print.
Lay your plywood on the ground. Cut two pieces of the 1-inch-by-2-inch furring strips to the length of the plywood. You can cut these pieces with either the miter or circular saw—they just need to be straight edges.
After you cut the long pieces, lay them around the plywood. Measure the width from end to end of the long piece of 1 inch by 2 inch and cut two more pieces of 1 inch by 2 inch to that size. After cutting, lay all the pieces out around the plywood and make sure they snugly fit around it.
While the 1-inch-by-2-inch pieces are still around the plywood, nail them together at the corners of the wood with a nail gun. You are only nailing these to each other—not the plywood.
Measure the long pieces of 1 inch by 2 inch from end to end, and cut pieces of the lattice molding to that size on a 45-degree angle using a miter saw.
Lay the pieces out along the top of the 1-inch-by-2-inch frame with the long edge of the lattice molding flush against the outside of the 1 inch by 2 inch. Measure the distance between each piece of vertical lattice molding you just cut from long end to long end. Cut two pieces of lattice molding to this measurement at a 45-degree angle. Lay all the pieces out along the 1-inch-by-2-inch pieces and make sure all fit well. All the lattice molding should be flush against the outside of the 1-inch-by-2-inch frame you have already assembled.
Using the nail gun, nail the lattice molding against the 1-inch-by-2-inch frame, making sure the molding is flush against the outside edges of the 1 inch by 2 inch.
Mount your art to the plywood with double-sided tape, then lay it facedown in the frame. The lattice molding you cut should be facedown on the floor.
Screw four corner braces along the edges of the frame. You will only need to screw the braces once to the 1-inch-by-2-inch part of the frame—do not screw it to the plywood. The braces should be installed to push the plywood up against the lattice molding.
Screw eye hooks into the back inside of the frame and run hanging wire through them; hang your art on the wall.
If your frame is as big as mine, I would try to find a stud to hang it on or use a drywall anchor.
A $150 frame or a $25 frame? I’ll take the latter any day of the week.
Jenna LaFevor rants on at Rain on a Tin Roof about DIY projects, junk décor, thrifty finds, crafty creations and other decorating dilemmas. She went to UTC, where she got a teaching degree that now collects dust. When she isn’t trying to keep her kid from climbing out of the circus ring or making sure her husband’s shirts are taken to the dry cleaners so she gets out of ironing, she can be found with a paintbrush in one hand and a cheap beer in the other. But if you’re buying, she’ll have a cosmopolitan. You can email her at firstname.lastname@example.org or you can connect with her on Facebook, Twitter @raintinroofblog or at her blog. The opinions expressed in this column belong solely to the author, not Nooga.com or its employees.