A fabric-covered picture frame can be priceless because you made it. It is one-of-a-kind and shows your artistic flair and personal style.
You will need the following to make one:
- Closely woven cotton fabric of your choice. Choose one that is not too thin
- Wooden picture frame
- Fabric glue
- Paper or thin cardboard for pattern
- Tailor’s chalk
- Remove the backing, glass from the picture frame, and set them aside. Place your frame face down onto the paper and trace the inside and outside of the frame. Cut the cardboard to resemble the frame.
- Iron the cotton fabric to make it smooth. Place the cardboard pattern on the reverse side of the fabric and with the tailor’s chalk trace the inside and outside lines. Measure the width of the long and short sides. From the outside edge of the frame, measure the width of the frame side plus about one-half to three-fourths inch as seam allowance so the fabric can wrap around the frame. Do the same all around.
- Measure about one-half to three-fourths inch from the inside of the frame toward the center, all around and cut the excess fabric. From the inside corner of the space created by the cut-away, make a diagonal cut towards the inner corner. Do not cut too close to the corner to make an allowance for the thickness of the wood. Do the same for the rest of the inner corners.
- For the outside of the frame, cut the fabric at right angles to the outside corners, leaving some allowance for the thickness of the wood.
- Place your frame face down on the reverse side of the fabric and align it to the guidelines you made. Take an outside flap, wrap it around the long side of the frame towards the inner edge, and fold the seam. Remove the frame, fold the seam all around and iron the seam flat. Unfold, add fabric glue and refold.
- Put back your frame. Spread fabric glue on the inner flaps and wrap them around the inner rectangle. Pull slightly to remove creases, checking the alignment of the edges with your guidelines. Pulling too much might warp the wood later. Pay special attention to the inner corners. Make sure that every area of the fabric has adhered to the wood. Allow the fabric glue to dry.
- Work the outside top and bottom flaps first. Spread glue on the fabric and pull the flap tight enough to ensure that there are no wrinkles and that the fabric lies flat over the wood. The seam should be close to the inner edge or close enough to cover the inner flaps. For the long sides, fold the corners of the flaps at a 30 to 35-degree angle inward and glue them before spreading glue and pulling the outside flaps towards the inner rectangle starting at the center, then the two corners and making adjustments in between until you get an almost straight line. Make sure that the corners are covered nicely. Trim any thread that might have unraveled and add a dab of glue to seal. Let the glue dry. Add notches or slits for the clips that hold the backing in place.
Put back the glass, add your favorite picture, replace the backing and voila, you have a beautiful, fabric covered picture frame to add to your display. You can stop at that. Alternatively, you can add themed embellishments to make your picture frame really stand out.