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Picture Framing on a Budget

April 14, 2008



3 picture frames same size and color from a garage sale (cost: $1 each)

1 package coordinating gift wrap tissue paper from Wal-Mart (cost: $1.97)

3 8×10 pictures of the ocean taken by me in Hawaii and Seaside, Oregon (cost: negligible amount of photo paper and printer ink)


The result? Some added punches of color and whimsy to the walls. I particularly like the polkadots. It is completely unexpected.

003So, how did I do this? It’s easy. I didn’t even use glue. Just lay the tissue paper over an existing mat board or whatever is already inside the picture frame and fold the ends of the tissue paper under. (You could use tape to secure it and keep the tissue taut, if you like, but I was lazy and didn’t. The effect was that the tissue became a little bit rippled from the pressure on the glass, but that’s okay as it sort of looks like ripples in the sand, so there you go. ) Place the photo in the center of the mat, place the glass on top, and replace it all in the frame. Hang your pictures in a nice little grouping.

I’m so happy with this arrangement. They are hung slightly above eye-level (when I’m seated) directly across from my desk, so when the weather turns gray and rainy like it is today, I can stare at them, feel the warmth of the sun, and remember that it really is summer somewhere.


  1. April 14, 2008 5:20 pm

    This looks excellent! Actually, it looks like a page out Martha Stewart’s magazine, or Real Simple (is that the name of it?) magazine. Really elegant but fun, and just beautiful. The fact that the photos are awesome doesn’t hurt, either. πŸ˜‰

  2. April 14, 2008 7:43 pm

    @Wendy: Thanks to your encouragement, I now have something great to look at every day in my new home office. I just love going in here every day. So cheery and happy, even when it’s dreary and dull outside.

  3. Bev permalink
    April 15, 2008 5:09 am

    Beautiful! What wonderful pictures you take! Framing them so that you can truly enjoy them on a daily basis is a great idea.

  4. April 15, 2008 7:31 am

    @Bev – and you also encouraged me to do this… next up, framing rose pictures!

  5. Bev permalink
    April 15, 2008 2:25 pm

    hahaha – in my earlier comment, I actually was going to remind you to NOT FORGET THE ROSES, but I didn’t want to sound – well – pushy! πŸ™‚

  6. April 15, 2008 3:21 pm

    Some people are so creative. They look great. I love that idea. I like it better than a matted photo. I think I will have to steal that idea and try it myself.

  7. kaylee permalink
    April 15, 2008 8:11 pm

    EXCELLENT!!!!!!!!!!!!! πŸ˜›

  8. April 22, 2008 10:47 am

    what a great idea! Ive also done fabric “mats” and used pages out of wallpaper sample books.

  9. April 24, 2008 5:21 pm

    Oh, gosh. I want a touch of whimsy! Come over and help me with mine, pretty please? How adorable.

  10. thegirlfromtheghetto permalink
    April 25, 2008 8:23 pm

    Good idea. I especially like the photo you took of the surf crashing on the right side. Nice!

  11. April 27, 2008 7:33 am

    @Joan – I think you should try it! It’s fun and easy to do.

    @VV – I hadn’t thought of using wallpaper sample books, but I had heard of the fabric mats as well as scrapbook paper. I started out trying scrapbook paper but the sheets weren’t big enough and I didn’t want a seam to show.

    @Beth – If I’m ever in San Diego, I will call you up and we can have a whimsy-adding party!

    @Girlfromtheghetto – That pic was taken in Maui. I heart Maui. I want to go back there.

  12. nadia wolfberg permalink
    April 29, 2008 11:37 am

    for the unlucky ones that do not go to garage sales go to they really do have bargains.

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