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Tutorial Thursday: Fabric Covered Frames

Over the years, we have collected a number of picture frames thathave seen better days.  Moving up and down the country and my inability to dust have really taken its toll on some of the smaller frames we have dotted about the house.  They needed a refresh...and I needed something to jazz up my very orange wall in the kitchen.

finished 1


Old photo frames with the glass and backing removed
Material (factor 1/4 yard per 6x8 frame, more or less for different sizes)
String or yarn
Hot Glue
Flat Tacks
Clips (clothes pegs, metal alligator clips, bulldog clips, etc)

Start by cutting or ripping your fabric into long strips 1.5 to 2 inches wide.  This works best if the fabric is not cut as a fat quarter, but it won't matter too much of the strips are short, it just makes it a bit more fiddly.

Start wrapping the fabric around the frame at one side of a straight edge.  Make sure the end of the strip is on the back side of the frame.  You will wrap the strip around the frame in taut, overlapping loops, making sure to cover all of the frame in fabric.


When covering the corner, it works best if the strip of material is centred over the middle of the point.  As you wrap around the corner, tug on each side of the strip to get a tight fit around the angle.

corner 1corner 2

When you need to start a new strip, just line up the old material and the new piece, making sure the beginning of the new piece is at the back of the frame. Keeping both pieces taught and wrapping as you did before should keep the previous section in place.  If in doubt, tack the back of the preceding piece of material with a tack.


Finish the wrapping by tacking the material in place, once you have all of the frame covered. Attach a hanging loop by securing a piece of string or thin strip of fabric to the centre of the back of the frame with two dots of glue.


Trim off any stray threads.

As the material takes up a lot of space in the frame, its unlikely (but not impossible) you'll be able to reuse the glass and backing.  You can still use the frames for pictures or children's art by using hot glue to attach some clips or clothes pegs to the outside front of the frame.  Having the clips on the outside of the frame makes it easy to change out the content of the frames. Buttons are not required, but they do make things look extra cute!! Secure with more hot glue.


By using a number of coordinating fabrics, you can make a striking wall feature. 

P1070282 P1070263

(Please note that my kitchen is not nearly as tidy as it looks on first maintain this illusion of cleanliness, DO NOT enlarge the pic)

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