A lot of people have old picture frames lying around with nothing to put in them. If you have run out of artwork or pictures for framing or simply enjoy do-it-yourself projects, then our DIY chalkboard picture frame tutorial is just the thing for you.
If you don’t have an abundance of picture frames lying around then you should head over to our Frame USA closeout section for a variety of very affordable picture frames.
Chalkboard picture frames have been becoming increasingly popular as people are looking for unique ways to liven up living spaces. These chalkboard picture frames can also be used as drawing station for toddlers, birthday or holiday gifts and a wide range of other uses.
To start this project, you first need a picture frame. Once you found a suitable frame (the bigger the better so you have more space to write on your chalkboard), remove the glass and clean it so there are no smudge marks or blemishes.
Once your glass is clean you then need to apply a glass primer and allow it to dry. It’s important that after each step you allow your work to dry or your DIY picture frame will turn out very mediocre. Next you apply two steps of chalkboard paint, remembering to let it dry after applying each coat.
After the second coat of chalkboard paint dries, place you glass back into the frame and your DIY chalkboard picture frame is complete!
Check back in with our Frame USA Blog for more DIY Picture Frame ideas.
A shadow box frame is an enclosed, glass front picture frame that can hold and display items that have value or particular meaning for an individual. These shadow box frames are deeper than our standard picture frames and are really taking off right now.
Our Shadowbox Showcase Frames are inexpensive shadow boxes which are available in 4 colors and many standard sizes. They have easy opening tabs which allow you to open the frame from the back. All you need to do to have your shadow box frame ready for display is mount the items inside, replace the back, and hang.
Our other shadow box series is the Shadow Box Elite. This series is a beautiful and affordable way to put your treasured heirlooms and collectibles on display. The Shadow Box Elite is available in 4 colors (white, black, cherry and honey) and has a depth of 15/16″.
Whether you’re looking to keep certificates and awards safe or simply display precious mementos, our American made shadow box frames will keep you satisfied and have your guests in awe.
A picture wall is a photo wall display similar to your own mini art gallery. Basically, it is a ton of different sized pictures thrown on a wall with some kind of order to it. These picture walls are a popular way to display family portraits, artwork, or any type of memory you want to share with the world.
A popular place many people are designing their picture walls are around staircases. A photo display easily livens up a usually boring staircase and is the perfect area to place smaller family photos. As you walk up or down the steps you can arrange the pictures to gradually age for a nice effect.
One way to spice up your picture wall is to use shelves to help display your pictures. The majority of picture walls are simply a collection of photos hung up together that all have a matching theme. Using shelves is an underrated means to add a different feel to your wall. Also, using a ledge display can save space because you can layer your pictures in order to fit more in a smaller space, something that’s not as easy when arranging them on a wall.
On a similar accord, monograms are a nice decorative design that can add flair to you picture walls. This is especially prevalent if you are hanging family photos as it can be a nice way to identify the people photographed as well as break up the monotony of the pictures.
The newest trend in picture walls is taking full advantage of your bathroom. Similar to how picture walls can be used to liven up a staircase, they can also bring to life a bland bathroom.
A mistake that some people don’t even consider when embarking on their own photo wall journey is sticking with only the standard photo size. The pictures you chose to hang do not have to be uniform. In fact, using different photo sizes as opposed is a great way to make your photo wall less repetitive.
Lastly, make sure you know the proper methods of how to hang pictures so as not to damage the wall or the frame and get started today!
Many people feel picture framing is an intricate and time consuming task. We want you to know that it doesn’t always have to be! We know often times the endless amounts of matting, framing, and glass options, picture framing can be overwhelming. Based on the outcome you’re looking for though, there a few tips and tricks you can follow to make picture framing easier.
The picture frame should complement the image it is housing as well as the space where it’s hung. If you’re hanging artwork in a modern looking room then you’d want to avoid using an oddly shaped frame. On the other spectrum, if the room has a more classic feel, then the best advice would be to stay away from shiny, polished metal or modern looking picture frames.
Color picture frames can be instrumental in bringing your artwork to life. Choosing a white picture frame or a gold picture frame is a guaranteed way to make your art pop, you just have to be mindful not to select a frame that clashes with what’s being hung.
The type of picture frame you opt for is just as important as your color selection. Wood picture frames are the most popular and traditional frames due to their versatility. Wood can be stained in a variety of colors and already come in various themes such as the rustic wood frames or the driftwood picture frames. On the other end of the spectrum, metal picture frames are more practical based on their material and tend to last a lot longer.
Be aware of how you hang your pictures:
Frames ideally should be hung at eye level, not too high and not too low, about 60 inches (or 5 feet) above the ground.
When hanging a picture above a table you want to leave 4-8 inches of space between the bottom of the picture frame and the top of the table.
If you’re hanging a picture frame above a couch or other piece of furniture there should be a 3-6 inch space between the furniture and the picture frame.
Try to avoid hanging your artwork in direct sunlight. The purpose of framing art is to make it look nice and protect it, sunlight and moisture are detrimental to this.
Place your framing wire as close to the top of the picture frame as you can. Doing this helps keep your picture flat against the wall by raising the pictures center of gravity.
When choosing a mat for your artwork, the basic principle is that the mat should be lighter than the artwork or picture but darker than the wall. The mat is there to provide visual space between your picture, the frame and the wall. People often make the mistake of getting too fancy when choosing a mat which in turn takes away from the artwork.
Put these tips into action when framing your next picture and find out how easy picture framing really is. If you have any questions, we over here at Frame USA would be more than happy to assist you. Good luck on your next project.
Valentine’s Day is all about letting someone special know that you’re thinking about them. One way to do that is by getting them a gift. You can buy something expensive (like jewelry), or something you know they need (like a gardening trowel) but the gifts that leave the biggest impression are the ones that have meaning behind them. The thoughtful presents that you create yourself that shows your valentine how well you know them. A great way of doing this is by putting significant photos or mementos from a special moment into picture frames and then customizing those frames.
At Frame USA we have a number of different frames that would be perfect for creating this kind of unique Valentine’s Day present.
This is an unfinished picture frame with a flat profile that comes in 3 different widths (1.5″, 2″ or 3″). It is created especially
for crafting. You can paint it, glue on it, and use a wood burning pen, anything you can think of to decorate the frame. You could get small wooden hearts or other Valentine’s Day items (even those little candy hearts) and affix them to the frame with an inside that reminds the person of a fun time you’ve had together.
This frame is another unfinished wood frame (as the name might suggest). Like the Decorate It, the Unfinished series comes in 3 different profiles, but these are more decorative with some scoops and beveling in the frame. This picture frame could be painted in a rosy, reddish or dark pink color with a picture of you and your valentine together held within it. A classy way to celebrate your relationship.
Maybe you don’t have a lot of time or are just not good at crafting, painting or applique. You can still customize a frame for
your sweetheart to create a special memory. At Frame USA we are able to laser engrave names and even logos onto certain frame series that are found in the Laser Engraving category. You can engrave on any or all of the frame rails, oriented how you like. The laser burns away the finish to show the wood (or metal) beneath. You can engrave their name, maybe dates or a special quote or song lyrics. The possibilities for making your valentine go, “Awwwww!” and look at you with puppy-dog eyes are endless.
Remember that time you and your valentine went to the___(theater, restaurant, beach, etc.) and they kept the___(ticket stub, receipt, shells you found, etc.)? Wouldn’t it be a great Valentine’s Day
surprise to put those in a nice display? Frame USA has several different shadowboxes that are just right for showing off mementos. In our Shadowbox Elite, Shadowbox Showcase or Barnwood Shadowbox (for those who appreciate a rustic look) you can mount those items to the foamcore backing and give your special someone a gift that is both stylish and thoughtful.
Not all valentines are ready for something so meaningful. Maybe it’s someone you’ve been dating for a short while–long
enough to get them something but not long enough to make them a memory box–well we still have you covered. You can always pick them up a poster from Posterservice and put it in one of Frame USA’s poster frames. We have music posters, movie and TV posters, humor, art prints, and scenic–anything anyone could have an interest in. You can find something they would like. This still shows that you know what they like and want without over-doing the sentiment.
So as February 14th gets closer, consider giving your valentine something they can hang on their wall and cherish for many Valentine’s Days to come.
October is here. Pumpkins, warm apple cider, a chill in the air and falling leaves. Lots and lots of falling or fallen leaves. When the foliage turns color and begins to drop from branches, it might be fun to preserve some of the more beautiful specimens you can find. There are hundreds of crafts that can be done using autumn foliage that are great for kids and adults, but we will just talk about two very simple ones that you can do using picture frames from Frame USA.
Before you get to the frames however, you have to get some leaves. The first week of October is prime foliage collection time. Everything has had a chance to change to those beautiful red, yellow and orange hues and have hit the ground but are still supple and haven’t really started to dry out and turn brown and crumbly. Try and get as many different types and colors of leaves as you can, large and small. A variety of shapes to choose from will make your crafts more interesting. Plus, it’s just nice to be out in the crisp autumn air. When you get them home, if you’re not going to use them right away, be sure to store them in a cool, dark place. It wouldn’t hurt to put them in sealable, airtight plastic bags either.
Once you have a good selection of leaves, you can start the first project; framing fall foliage as a picture. There are a lot of ways you can arrange your leaves, but the two that are easiest is to frame one large leaf by itself, or create a collage of different leaves, almost a mosaic. The first thing you’ll want to do, either way, is to preserve your leaves a little. I suggest starting out by drying them. You can do this very easily by putting them between two pieces of wax paper and then closing them in a large book overnight. Once you’ve done that, you’ll want to spray your leaves with a UV resistant acrylic sealer. This will help keep their colors from fading over time. You’ll want to do one side, then when that dries, flip them over and do the other. These are both spray-heavy projects actually, because I also suggest using spray adhesive (for this first project) and you can also use a glossy spray finish if you want to give your leaves a shiny look. Once you’ve treated your
leaf or leaves, and they’re dry, you can spray a piece of white foam core (all of these supplies are inexpensive and can be purchased at your local craft/hobby store and the leaves are free) with spray adhesive and quickly (but gently) affix the leaves or leaf in the position you want them/it. The adhesive dries quickly so you won’t have much chance to rearrange so you will want to plan this out first.
We have several wood picture frames that are ideal for autumn inspired framing project. The first is one of our rustic barn wood frames. Our Appalachian Barnwood to be exact. I would recommend it in the rustic brown color to give it that real outdoors-y, fall feel. This is a real wood frame with a 3/4″ recess and a 7/16″ usable depth. This is a good frame for any DIY type of project and perfectly shows off homemade art and photos.
If you’re looking for something a little more whimsical and bright, I would suggest our Colori Large picture frame in orange. This frame is made from an eco-friendly wood composite and finished with a colorful wrap. It has a flat 2″ profile and a 1/2″ usable depth. This frame is great if you’re doing this project with kids and want to maybe hang the piece in their room or in a classroom. It also comes in yellow and red, if you’re doing multiple frames and want to represent all the fall colors.
Now that we’ve framed leaves, it’s time to put leaves on the frame itself. After treating your leaves you can choose a bunch of different ones that you like to affix to the outside of our Decorate-It wood picture frame. The Decorate-It frame is made specifically for crafting and comes in 3 flat profiles; a 1 1/2″, a 2″ and a 3″ width. For this kind of project I recommend the 2″ width to give you more room to play with.
You can use spray fixative for this again but because it’s wood I would actually suggest using a very thin layer of wood glue to hold the leaves really tight. Arrange them in any pattern you like around the edges of the frame and after you’ve glued them in place I suggest spraying them with the gloss finish, and a layer of spray adhesive, just for good measure and to make them look good. After everything dries you now have a nice autumn picture frame that you can maybe put halloween photos or Thanksgiving photos in.
Autumn is maybe the prettiest season of the year and you’ll be glad you have something in your home that reminds you of it all year long.
Almost everyone knows what picture frames are for—to protect, enhance and display a piece of artwork, a precious document, or a family portrait. That is not the only thing that picture frames can be used for. The uses for picture frames are endless. I’ve compiled a list of some of my favorite unconventional uses for picture frames that I’ve seen around pinterest, television and even from customers!
1. Apartment Door Decoration using an Upcycled picture Frame
This use was something I had never thought of until I saw it on the TV Show Selfie. Use a decorative picture frame in shell form (without glass or backing) such as our Napoleon or American Value Silver frames on your door! You can also use a picture frame as a festive wreathe. Our Barnwood frames are perfect for a fall wreathe. This is perfect for apartments to make a door stand out among the sea of doors!
2. Upcycled Frame Collage Artwork
Picture frame collages with images in a bunch of different style of frames all painted one color to match but make a statement are very popular. This takes that idea but uses the picture frame shells as art itself! The different styles of our wood frames would be great for this idea.
3. Upcycled picture Frame turned Coffee Table
I don’t have a picture of this next one since it was an idea from a customer that she is planning on doing. She is planning on making a tabletop with a 2” thick frame to display seashells. She is substituting acrylic instead of glass and wooden dividers for the seashells and to support the acrylic. She figured out that this would be much cheaper than one of those coffee tables that are made for displays. Our Shadow box Elite comes in an unfinished profile which would be great for this so you can stain it and paint it in a color to match your décor.
4. Serving Tray using Upcycled Picture Frame
Who doesn’t love parties? Create a unique tray to serve food, drinks or bottles on. Using scrap book paper and acrylic glass in one of our frames. Our Victorian Picture Frames would be a beautiful conversation starter about where you got this vintage looking tray.
5. Nail Polish/Spice Rack using an Upcycled Picture Frame
This is perfect for the nail polish or food obsessed. Using a picture frame painted with the color of your choice or even just your favorite frame, for me it would be our Black Smoke Series and wood pieces adhered to the back to hold nail polish bottles or spice containers. This is both a piece of art and a handy storage system!
I hope my top 5 favorite unconventional uses for upcycled picture frames inspired the DIY crafter inside you. Show us your favorite upcycled picture frames!
As your children turn from kids to adults, buying them presents for the holidays or birthdays can become a difficult task. They become far less easy to please and far more expensive to shop for. You may have given up the fight and settled with money, gift cards or clothing (that they will probably end up returning for the money). We thought that we would end this madness and give you a few gift ideas that will guarantee make your kids cry or at least give you a really big hug! The best part about these gifts are you most likely will have almost every one of them, and with the help of Frameusa.com you won’t even have to leave your house this Black Friday because you will be all set for your presents.
1. Frame ticket stubs and program from an event you experienced together.
Almost all kids will attend concerts and/or plays that impacted them greatly in some way. By framing them you are providing your children with someplace to not only protect those precious ticket stubs and play bills but to display them as well. We have three types of shadow box picture frames that you can choose from: Shadow box Boxers, Shadow Box Showcase and Shadow Box Elite. All of which come in our standard sizes. Just like all of our other picture frames our Shadow Box frames are back loading. This will allow for your children to put in their precious ticket stubs and play bills, close up the frame to display and then add more ticket stubs and play bills as they receive them! Only have one particular show that was special? Just frame those elements with Build a Frame
2. Frame your child’s favorite childhood toy
Our picture frames come in variety of depths so they will accommodate everything from a puzzle all the way up to a matchbox car or train. If the toy itself is rather thick I suggest looking at our shadow box picture frames. They range in depth from a little over 1 inch all the way up to 3.5 inches
3. Take a childhood “Blankey” and frame it
You can Use the aforementioned shadow box picture frames and have the blanket sewn onto black foam core. The other option is to unfold the blanket and frame it in a traditional wood frame.
4. Combine your child’s catcher’s mitt or dance shoes with a picture of them in the uniform/costume
Take your child’s equipment and find a photo of them wearing it. Use our Shadow Box Showcase picture frame and combine them for a meaningful gift.
5. Turn your childhood’s art piece into a masterpiece
We can take a copy of your child’s artwork and turn it into a plaque that can be hung on a wall. For more information about the plaque process, click here! A Plaque is a great picture frame alternative that allows for you to protect your pieces but in a simple inexpensive way!
6. Frame a memento from an important life experience
You can use Build a Frame and choose beautiful mats and high quality made in the USA picture frames to turn that moment into a lasting memory.
7. Framed pennies from the birth year of each of your family members
These can be especially wonderful to use as a gift for your grown children, especially those that have new families of their own. Once you have the pennies you can lay them out however you please, in a more artistic way such as in a family tree style, or a simpler layout such as a straight line.
8. Frame a map of your home state or city
If you’re really crafty you can do something spectacular to the map, but for those of you that are like me, all you need is an image of a map, scissors and a made in the USA picture frame.
9. Framed Image of Childhood Home
We suggest turning it into more of an artistic style photographs using an online generators.
10. Frame a family letter
The easiest gift of all is simply writing your child a meaningful letter letting them know how much you love them, and are proud of them and getting it framed
After hearing of the topic of this blog, one of our employee’s shared with us a personal experience that really showed us that these gifts really do mean the world to our children. With approval of this employee we thought we would share her story with you to show that this really is a worthwhile post and is not just an attempt on our part to push our products.
“My senior year of college I was required to go through a portfolio show in which I displayed my portfolio to friends, family and professors. All of the projects in it were an accumulation of my 4 years at school and it was extremely important to me. My mom took the postcard invitation that was sent out about the show and got it framed for me. This simple gift that my mom gave me serves as a daily reminder of my accomplishments and I cherish it deeply.”
Giving your child (or anyone for that matter) a worthwhile gift isn’t about how much you spend or how trendy it is, it’s about coming up with something that makes that person feel cherished. That is why these gifts that we gave you are so effective; they will make your child see that what is important to them is important to you.
Here at Frame USA, we love our customers! We may be in the picture frame business, but our main mission is creating Raving Fans. While we want to help make you a Raving Fan, we love to rave about our customers as well. We first started working with Creative Notions and THE PAINTSTRO!® back in 2007. We worked hard to find them the perfect frame to help their vision take off. Once we finalized the picture frame for them, the rest has taken off.
Matt, the owner, describesTHE PAINTSTRO!® as “an innovative group art kit. Inside our kits, you will find wonderful art materials and an audio CD, but YOU will provide the most important piece: THE PEOPLE. THE PAINTSTRO!® is all about creating a shared art experience in which unique individuals come together to create a united work of art. By using our interactive audio CD, you and THE PAINTSTRO!® will guide your group to the unveiling of a SURPRISE MASTERPIECE!”
THE PAINTSTRO!® is great for all types of groups and outings: Youth Organizations & Camps, Town Senior Centers, Corporate Team-Building Events, and much more! To find out more about THE PAINTSTRO!®, please visit:
We’d love to help your business venture take off as well. Please feel free to contact us at [email protected] or fill out our Custom Quote form at: http://www.frameusa.com/blog/custom-quote/ TODAY! Our team of picture frame experts is here to find the perfect frame for your next project and venture.
Being both an online picture frame company and retail store location, we’ve learned the ins and outs of the framing business. This is not to say that we know everything — far from it! However, we do know a good deal about the difference of the custom framing process. When we released Build A Frame, we changed how custom framing operated.
In our store, retail and online custom framing are of equally high importance. Both orders are assembled with utmost care, attention to detail and design sensibility. The main difference is price point, which is different with every framer out there. Our Build A Frame process and price in the store is the same as it is online. The main difference? Customers in the store can physically see the products in person.
Have you had a great experience with either a retail or online custom framing experience? Let us know in the comments what made it unforgetable!