Photo Decoupage Frame

My husband recently requested a group photo of all 5 of our grandchildren, not an easy task when they live in 3 different states.

The opportunity came up this summer when the children all came down and were together for the first time.  It wasn’t easy getting a photo of 5 smiling faces, the babies weren’t exactly cooperative.  But a day at the beach had all of the kids smiling and having a good time.

To make this photo extra special my 13 year old grandson and I made a decoupage frame for it.  The frame is surrounded by my favorite photos of the kids.  I decided to mount black and white photos to keep it less busy, with all the things going on in the photos I thought mounting color photos would be just too much.  The photo I framed is matted with a pop of red to give it just the right touch of color.

I presented this framed photo to my husband to mark the end of summer.  He can enjoy it whenever he misses the boys who have all had to go home once school started.  He loves it and has placed it in our upstairs family room where he will see it every morning when he wakes up and and the evenings before we enter our bedroom.  He thinks it’s perfect!

The photo frame is very easy to make.  I used 1″ x 4″ wood pieces that Home Depot was nice enough to cut to my specifications.  The wood is glued together with Gorilla Wood Glue.  (Amazon affiliate link)
The photos are attached to the wood frame using a process called decoupage using Matte Finish Mod Podge Glue. (Amazon affiliate link)

You can make it any size you want, just cut the wood to the appropriate lengths.  If in doubt use the OUTSIDE measurements of a frame you already have at home.  Remember it’s the inside square that should be the size of the photo you are framing, if you will be matting the photo make the frame larger to accommodate the matte as well.  (I usually matte a 5×7 photo with an 8×10 matte and 8×10 photos with an 11×14 matte.)  You can use mattes you buy from any of the discount stores or you can make your own using cardstock or cardboard.  (I made mine using a Cricut Explore) Amazon affiliate link

If you prefer you can mount color photos, or comic book pages, or even fabric to your wood.  It’s a great way to make photos special and creatively.  You can even embellish the frame by gluing buttons, shells, stickers, etc.

Materials:

4 pieces of 1″ x 4″ wood strips cut to size you want
Gorilla Wood Glue
Masking Tape or vise grip
Mod Podge Matte Finish
Sponge brush
Mod Podge Clear Acrylic Sealer Matte Finish
Photos
Mattes (optional)
Double Stick Tape
Duct Tape or tacks
Picture hanger – use the wire type ( 2 hooks on each side with a wire in between) the frame is heavy and will need the wire for safer hanging.  (optional)

Photo Decoupage Frame

Instructions:

1.  Following the directions on the Gorilla Wood Glue attach the wood strips together to form a square or rectangle frame.

2.  Clamp the pieces together using a vice grip or tape.  Be sure it’s clamped tightly.

3.  Allow to dry for at 24 hours.

4.  Cut photos you will mount on the frame to fit the frame and arrange them on the frame.

5.  When you’re happy with the photo placement brush the wood and the back of the photos with Mod Podge Glue.

6.  Let the glue set for a few minutes then press the photo on to the wood.  Repeat this process until the frame is covered with photos.

7.  Brush a thin coat of Mod Podge Glue over all the photos.  Allow to dry 10 minutes or more and apply 3 more thin coats of Mod Podge Glue allowing it to dry completely between coats.

8.  Let the frame dry overnight.

9.  Lightly spray frame with Mod Podge Clear Acrylic Sealer.  Let dry.

10.  Cut a piece of cardstock or cardboard 1″ larger than your frame opening.  This will be your backing.

11.  Center the photo you want to frame on the backing, place your matte or mattes over the photo.

12.  Using double stick tape attach the photo and frame to the backing.

13.  Position the backing on the back of the frame – make sure your photo is centered in the frame opening.

14.  Attach the backing to the frame back using duct tape or tacks.

15.  Attach a photo hanger to the back of the frame is you will be hanging the picture.