Do you have posters still stuck to your walls with Blu-Tack? If your style has moved beyond the college dorm, then you need to get a frame for those prints pronto! This is a cheap, easy way to graduate those posters to the next level.
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In our continuing quest to transform our basement media room, Steve found a great Firefly poster at a local comic book store that he wanted to decorate the space with. I didn’t want to just stick it to the wall, and store bought poster frames seemed to either be cheap black plastic or really expensive custom wood. I made my own frame instead for under $10!
As usual, I scoured the internet for ideas. This tutorial from Young House Love was just what I was looking for. I decided to go with 1 x 2 boards rather than the 1 x 3’s they used. I didn’t want the frame to protrude too far off the wall and get smacked by our son who likes to do crazy gymnastics on our super soft new carpet.
I picked up two 1 x 2 x 6′ select pine boards that had similar grain patterns. I measured and cut them so that the top and bottom pieces were 1″ longer than the width of the poster, and the sides were 1/2″ shorter than the length, as the tutorial suggests. In retrospect, the sides should have been 1″ shorter than the poster, because I had a bit of trouble stapling the 1/4″ overlap onto the frame. But anyway…after a few simple cuts, it was time to assemble!
I got to break in a new tool for this project! I always have problems getting a square corner clamped properly, so I got this handy corner clamp at Harbor Freight. It held each corner in place while I drilled the pilot holes and screwed in the 2″ screws. I double checked that the corner was square with my speed square before I started drilling.
After the frame was assembled, I stained it with Varathane gel stain in Dark Walnut. I decided to use a gel stain because pine has a tendency to be blotchy when stained with a traditional water based stain. I finished up with a coat of polyurethane to seal it. After everything was dry, it was time to attach the poster, which had been lying flat under some books for a few days to stop it from curling up.
I taped the poster to the back of the frame, making sure all the sides were even. Once everything is perfect, use a staple gun to attach the poster to the frame, making sure that the frame is completely behind the spot where the staple will go. I scored the edge of the frame onto the paper with my fingernail at each point I wanted to staple to see exactly where it was. I used 3/8″ crown staples and attached them a few inches apart.
Once everything is secure, attach a sawtooth picture hanger to the back, and a nail or screw to the wall. Then it’s ready to hang!
I’m so excited to finally have something hanging on our bare walls in the media room! There are a few posters in our son’s room that may be getting the same treatment soon. No more tacky Blu-Tack in our house!
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