Picture Frames Repurposed

I am amazed at the amount of picture frames I pick up on the side of the road, both during hard rubbish collection, and out the front of the antique store down the road that puts out junk they deem unsellable for collection by treasure hunters like me.
Some picture frames get used on my walls. I sometimes give them a coat of spray paint, or if they are perfectly crusty, they get used as is. Some picture frames get turned into blackboards, which I then sell at markets. The remaining picture frames tend to sit in a pile in my shed, not quite good enough for anything. Until now….

These frames didn’t make the cut. But I knew I’d find a use for them.

I pulled them to pieces and removed any nails with pliers.

As you may know I recently got a printer and have gone a little bit mad printing every piece of artwork in the world. I’ve framed lots of them, but now I have a surplus without enough suitably sized frames.

So I decided to make class room style posters out of them. Some of the images looked a bit too pristine. Time to grunge them up a bit with instant coffee in some water. I poured some on the image then wiped it around with a piece of scrunched up paper towel.

By dabbing the paper towel onto the artwork I got a nice mottled effect. You can pour extra liquid on then leave it to pool. Once dried (I put mine on a sunny windowsill) you get a nice aged effect.

Next I cut the artwork to size with a steel ruler and cutting blade.

I measured the width of each piece of art then cut two lengths of picture frame wood for each. I measured the wood to be the same as the width of the paper. But for one or two artworks I allowed a bit of an overhang on each end.

I then hammered two small nails into the back of the top piece for each artwork. These have the hanging string tied to them. A staple gun would also work to attach the string.

Next I got out my trusty hot glue gun and attached the top and bottom edge of the paper to the pieces of wood. I used the back of the frames for the front of these posters. I think the backs were much more weathered and interesting. And some had paper stuck to them which added texture.

I used natural coloured string to hang my posters. One frame already had some lovely string already attached which could be used for this project. I love to use what is available for my projects, rather than go out and buy materials.

The finished poster. I absolutely love these. So much so that I’ve made about 50.

The muscular system artwork is from the front of a notebook.

They look great hung in a cluster. I especially love the vintage music manuscript cover. I love typography and I think this treatment makes it look really special.

Ah feathers. So beautiful.

Here I indulged my love of geology with mineral and crystal illustrations.

A nice entomology theme.

The labels on these jars were all free printables. I bought the lidded jars on line for a bargain price.

So many wonderful possibilities. Imagine doing this with children’s art. They would love it!
Of course I realise some people don’t have an endless supply of picture frames lining the streets! A visit to the thrift store can turn up all kinds of inexpensive frames. Make sure you look at the back. That’s the bit that will be on show.
Now, go forth and create!


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