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Simple Picture Frames

 

It may be no Rembrandt, but still a family heirloom.

This Western Australian landscape was painted by my Mother's cousin back in 1974. It will probably never be famous, but it is still valuable to our family. As such, when it came into my possession, I knew that it deserved better than the chintzy 3/4" wide store-bought frame that it had been stuck with for the past 30 years.

I can count on one hand (and not use my thumb) the number of picture frames that I've ever made. Still, I think my simple efforts are an improvement.

I usually keep most of my wood scraps, and this is one time when it paid off. I had some thin (1/8" thick or so) pieces of walnut in my box of shorts. I ripped those down to a 3/8" width, ran a shallow dado in some inch-and-a-half wide maple, and glued them into place. A rabbet along the inner edge, and my stock was all set.

After cutting out the main pieces, I still had a fair bit of frame stock left. I couldn't bear to toss it, and wasn't sure what use it would be in my stash of shorts. So, I decided to make a second, smaller, frame. Eventually I figure we'll get something that will fit. This also gave me a practise piece, on which to try things out as I was glueing them up. Making two is almost as easy as making one, anyway.

I glued the corners with titebond II, and after it had dried I plunged a biscuit slot into the back of each corner and glued in a biscuit. Later, I cut off the half-biscuit that stuck out.

Overkill? Maybe. But this should make sure the frame never separates at those joints.

 

Thanks for reading!