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DIY Picture Framing Projects

There are many different framing projects you can undertake yourself, incorporating different aspects. Each has their own degree of difficulty, but we are here to help you every step of the way.

We have an extensive range of online videos covering many picture framing projects which we are adding to all the time.

Memorabilia framing

There are a lot of memorabilia that people would like to get framed - from shirts, to balls, medals, gloves, bats and war memorabilia. Have a look at our online videos on how to frame a shirt.

You will need to use a deep rebate moulding

If you're stuck with a specific framing project, shoot us an email and we'll help you as much as we can,

Framing a footy jumper? Have a look at this blog.


3D Framing


Photography Framing

Framing photography is a great project. With the current ability to take amazing shots with a smart phone we carry our camera around everywhere, and take many more photos than we used to.

When framing a black and white photo white mats are always good, but also try a very dark grey as an alternative to a black mat. It's less harsh and really suits black and white photography.

With color images try double mats. Pick our a colour from the image (i.e. sea scape try matching a blue) only showing 3 or 5mm of that color.

Have a look at this video for more information. 


Canvas stretching

Photos can now also be printed onto canvas, ready for you to stretch and frame. Canvasses can be stretched "white edge" or "gallery wrapped" where part of the image is wrapped around the stretcher bar.

Stretcher bar comes in different widths. The larger the canvas is you're stretching the larger the stretcher bar you should be using.

After stretching your canvas you can put a frame around it if you want. Front loading frames look great on canvasses.

Have a look!


Block Mounting a Photo

The other way to display photographs is to block mount them onto 10mm fome board. Have a look at how it's done!


Stretching a canvas or tapestry

Canvasses are stretched onto a moulding called stretcher bar. This comes in different sizes and widths. Canvasses can be stretched 'gallery wrapped' (with the image wrapped around the stretcher bar) or 'white edge' (where the image goes up to the edge of the stretcher bar front facing and the edges on the side are white).

You start by putting the frame together, using your Pushmaster and Strap Clamp. The size of your frame depends on whether you are showing a white edge or whether you are gallery wrapping your image.

Hold the canvas up to the light so that you can see where your image finishes and your white edge begins, place the canvas face down with your frame on the top. To attach the canvas to the frame we recommend you use an electric stapler - available from all good hardware stores.

Start stapling in the middle of your frame on one side then the other and so on.

Once your canvas has been stretched you can use a frame to finish it off. A great frame for canvas is a front loading frame which is attached from the back.

Have a look at our video!


Using Spacers 

Spacers are used to keep the glass of an image if you are framing it without a mat. It usually comes in the same lengths as moulding, comes in clear and black and is made of  plastic.

Creating a space between the glass and your artwork.

The most common method is to use a mount surround on your artwork. Most times a single or double mount creates sufficient depth or space. This is all thhe space needed to frame needlework, pastels, photographs etc. If a deeper space or gap is needed then one or more mounts can also be used with fomecore fillers between the layers of the mounts. This is the best method for paper tole, ribbon embrodery, and framing memoribilia. .

Another method is to insert a thin piece of fomecore board cut to the depth you require, into the frame rebate between the glass the artwork. Usually 3mm fomecore board fits neatly under the rebate where it is not visible from the front of the frame. The fomecore strip is kept in place with double sided tape.

The third method is to use a premade extruded plastic spacer made from acid free inert materials. This can be be cut to the length of the frame side and then adhered with double sided tape to the inside of the frame. As the spacers are made from clear or opaque plastic and are thin enough to fit under the rebate of the frame lip, they are not visible from the front.


Making Hardwood Frames

Hardwood frames are notoriously tricky to join. It's probably best to use a BenchMaster to join hardwood mouldings.

1. Cutting really hard timber with a hand saw is ok..just slow as you will have to take your time sawing through the hard timber. Cutting with a power saw is faster but can present a few problems..but the FrameCo Mitre Trimmer can correct any miscuts to give you a fine tight joint. The wider the profile you are cutting the more the problems will show up especially in hardwoods. If you are milling the frames yourself then keep the frame width to a minimum.

2. For joining you will have to use a hardwood v-nail to join those timbers...that's no problem, but you will not be able to "push" the v-nail into the timber by hand pressure alone. You can tap the end of the PushMaster tool with a hammer, but the frame will need to be held securely. So the FrameCo Strap Clamp is essential for good joints, because it will hold the frame tightly whilst you insert the v-nail.

3. If you wish to make a number of the frames then invest in the BenchMaster to insert the v-nails. With the BenchMaster you are able to apply a more even pressure to insert the v-nail. This pushes the v-nail into the timber more easily, but also it is a more gentle action than hammering so there is less stress on the join.

Natural timbers make very attractive frames, but they do present a few more challengers than cutting and joining commercial picture frame moldings. Because the FrameCo tools require a little more care and time to operate, you do get a better job when tackling special projects.

Framing a Jigsaw Puzzle

Jigsaw puzzles can be framed with any style of frame. These can be framed with a protective layer of glass or acrylic.

An alternative to glass is to "Brush Mark" the surface with Texturing Cream. This makes the image appear like an original oil painting. It also seals the surface so glass is not necessary, and the cream penetrates around the edges of the pieces of the puzzle which helps keep them firmly in place. Here is the method we used to frame our jigsaw.

- First, the puzzle needs to be mounted/glued down so that the pieces do not move. Place a board over the completed jigsaw, and turn the whole picture upside down
- Spray the back of the puzzle with Spray Adhesive, then place a piece of fomecore onto the back and press onto the adhesive.
- Turn back, and the puzzle pieces are now glued into place.
- Brush the Texturing cream onto the surface, leaving brush strokes. Frame when the cream has dried. Glass or Acrylic is not necessary.


Making a 5 sided frame

"Can you tell if it is possible to bend frame moulding? I need to make a frame with an arched top, to hold a special project. How do I go about making such a frame?"

Picture frame moulding can not be steamed to be bent out of its original shape. A lot of frame moulding is made up of several pieces of timber all finger- jointed together, then milled into the finished shape. So bending the moulding would break these joins.

However, we suggest that you make a 5 sided frame which will give you some shape to the top. The procedure to make the frame is .... Decide what width you would like the frame, then cut two side pieces "C" to make up the width. The mitres are at 60 degrees at the top and sides.Then determine the height "D" and cut these two lengths. The top mitre is 60 degrees and the bottom mitre cut at 45 degrees.Measure the space between the two sides and cut a bottom side to fit that space.

We do not have a formula for this frame, but the method just described will work. You can make this frame using your Proman saw, the FrameCo Measuring System and Mitre Mate multi-angle gauge . The Mitre Trimmer can also be set up to cut the 60 degree cuts. 

Questions? We're here to help! 

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our DIY framing experts.

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