Friday, May 20, 2011

Wire Picture/Note Frames How To!

So, a few years ago, I saw something somewhere that I thought was pretty cool.  So, of course, I decided I could do it just a bit better.  Or, in other words... Do it so I would like it better!

These have been really good sellers at my bazaars.

If you don't care about the how to, just skip on down the pictures...

First, you need to go to your local Home Depot or th equivalent.  Make sure to bring your teenage son to help.  Head on over to the big pile/display of 1x2's.   They come in 8' lengths.  Sometimes it takes a bit to find the straight ones in the pile but you can do it!  I usually buy 10 or more at a time.  They are usually around $1.00 each.  If you can't fit 8 foot boards into your car, have them cut it in half for you.

You can get one frame out of one 8' board but if you want it bigger than roughly 21" square you will need two.  Sometimes I decide the size I'm going to make before I cut them.  More often than not I decide as I'm cutting them.

Here they are all cut and numbered so I don't get them mixed up.

Next, sand the pieces just a bit...

Then Paint them

Sand them again.  The more you sand the more rustic they will look.

Then slap some stain on the pieces.  You can put them together first if you like.  I like to use Minwax water based stain because it dries fast and cleans up with soap and water.  I used to be able to buy it already in the color I wanted but now I have to have the clear base tinted.  I like to use American Walnut.

Screw them together.  I use my nail gun to put them together then screw them for more stability.  Don't forget the glue!

For the wire, I like to use "tie wire"  you can find it at Ace or Home Depot.

It is really greasy though so you should have an old rag or paper towels handy to wipe it off.  I cut my pieces then wipe them off.

Wrap the wire around something round.

Alternate the circles.

If you don't have a staple gun like this one.  You should get one or borrow one!  You will need an air compressor as well.  If you use a home hand stapler (the kind you re-cover chairs with) you will need to use several staples and hammer them down to keep the wire taut.

Stretch the wire and start stapling it into place

When you are finished, the wire will look all crooked and messy.  The beautiful thing about wire is that you can just bend it until it is straight and lovely.

If you want, you can cut out some stars or flowers or hearts and use them too.  I use my band saw to cut them out.  My scroll saw recently died.  More on that later...  You can also buy pre cut shapes at Michaels.

You can use clothespins or not to hold all your pictures and stuff.

So, there you go.  I'm going to put these in my wood etsy shop just as soon as I can figure out an easy way to ship them!