Monday, March 23, 2009

DIY Photo Frame Cardbox.

Screw driver
4 wood pictures frames (make sure they are all the same size, I used 8x10)
4 packs of L brackets (corner brackets) (1”/25mm) I got mine at Meijer. They came with screws.
1 pack of washers (I used these as spacers- you don’t need them)
1 foam board
Fabric of choice
Exacto knife
Clear tape
Duct tape

1. Start with your frames. Take out the glass, backing and interior packaging so you are just left with the wooden frames. Set the inside aside where you won’t break them (I put mine in a box).

2. I just eyeballed it, but you need to decide where you want the L brackets to go. I chose the put one per corner, alternating between top and bottom of the frame. You can choose to do two per corner, but it’s really up to you.

3. Mark the brackets with your pencil. I traced the inside of the hole.

4. Drill the holes into the frame. I didn’t go too deep; since using the screwdriver will make the screw go deeper if it needs to. I used the second smallest bit I had, but I think the packages suggest a size to use.

5. Once all your holes are drilled, you can start screwing your brackets on the frames and screw the frames together. I didn’t put my pictures in at this time, which I will explain later. I used the washers at this time. I put one on each screw before I secured the brackets to the frames. I did this because I was afraid of going through the frames. Using the washers, I didn’t.

6. Now, if you have cats like mine, they will be sitting inside the empty frames. While they are doing that, begin measuring and cutting the bottom. It doesn’t have to be perfect. My bottom is three pieces taped together. The opening at the top and bottom should be 8x8 (if you used 8x11 frames), which mine was, so I cut my board to be about 8x8. It didn’t really fit, so I shaved down the sides until it did. I did that twice, and taped the two together, giving myself an elevated bottom. I taped in on the frame, using the same L brackets. I added them to the bottoms of the frames so I could tape the foam board to them. If you choose to do the same thing, be prepared to shove them in, and shave the sides down around the brackets. (This is why I didn't add the glass and photos yet- so I could add the other L brakcets).

7. Then, I taped along the sides of the bottom foam board with the clear tape, so nothing would be able to escape (I was afraid of cards slipping out). I went onto the frames, but not enough where anyone would be able to see (unless they flipped the box over).

8. If you choose, you can add a Lazy Susan to the bottom to make it spin around. I didn’t, simply because I couldn’t find one small enough. If you do find one, just make sure it’s flat and secure it with rolled pieces of duct tape.

9. To make the top, you’ll need another piece of foam board, cut to size. I, again, used two pieces taped together to make a taller piece. Before you cover it with fabric, use your Exacto knife to cut the slot for cards. I guestimated and made some random size using a sample card I had sitting around.

10. Next, I took a piece of white muslin (inexpensive fabric) and used that to make my first layer.

11. To upholster the top, start in the middle of one of the sides. Use your stapler, and secure the middle. Continue until the whole foam board is covered. Don’t forget to cut a slit for the card slot and secure that with staples too!

12. Repeat step 11 with your nice fabric (mine was satin). I also used tape to secure my satin, since it frays pretty easily.

13. I used the remainder of my L brackets to create a space for the top. I moved them down a little, so the lid fits snugly inside the frames. If you want it to sit on top, cut the foam board larger to begin with.

14. Ta daa!! Now you should have a photo card box!! At this point you can insert your photos, if you haven't already. I had no trouble putting my pictures in after everything was assembles (with the lid off, of course), it really just depends on what size you use. After your wedding you can reuse the frames, since all you did was drill into th backside!

I will be posting photos later; I just have to get them! Comment with any questions, and I’ll be happy to help!

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