How to matte and frame a picture

How to matte and frame a picture

If you have a photograph or a picture you want to frame, you can easily drive to the local department store and purchase the size of frame that you need. Keep in mind that picture frames, especially the well-made type, are not inexpensive to buy.

You can easily make your own well-built picture frame that will last forever, and here is how:

Note: If you don’t have access to a power saw, then you can have someone else cut the pieces out for you. You can then take them home and put the frame together. If you are going to cut out the pieces yourself, be sure to wear protective safety goggles.

This is the basic rectangular-shaped frame.You will need to choose what kind of wood you want to use for the outside and also figure out how much you will need. Measure the artwork you want to frame and then add a couple of inches for extra space. This area will be matted. You will also need matting material, (whatever color you feel will compliment the picture), a piece of thin glass to fit inside the frame, joint connectors, glazing tacks, a picture hanger, wood glue, a piece of heavy cardboard, and material for the back board, the last layer of the framed picture.

The four wood pieces which will make up the frame, will need to be cut to size and routed or grooved however you desire. (For fanciness and to look attractive.) The end of every piece will need to be cut at a forty-five degree angle so all of the pieces will fit together securely. Finally, the insides of each piece will need to be grooved so an edge exists in order to hold the glass, etc.

Now, insert a joint connector into each end of the vertical pieces. Dab a little wood glue on each end and gently tap the pieces together by using a tack hammer. Make sure the pieces are squared together and are not crooked. Your frame should lie flat. It might be a good idea to cover the head of the tack hammer with a soft, thick cloth to avoid making any marks on the wood.

The next step is to place the glass inside the frame. Now, measure and cut out the matte and place it in the frame. Next, carefully place the picture or the artwork on top of the matte. Center it carefully. You will now cut out and add the cardboard filler piece, and, finally, the back board. Check at this point to make sure that the picture will be securely held in the frame. If it moves around, you can add another piece of filler to take up the extra space. The next step is to use the glazing tacks by gently tapping them into place. They will hold the back board securely onto the frame. Your final step is to center and attach the frame hanger to the back of the frame.

Now you have a well-built frame and the beginning of a family heirloom that you made yourself!


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