Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Display Frame with Chicken Wire Tutorial

Recently Snapdragon Snippets has begun offering a "paper quilt" version of popular Hearthsewn Patterns "On the Docket" mini quilts. There are many fun and interesting ways to display each of these monthly "quilts". 

Featured here is a re-purposed wooden picture frame. Chicken wire has replaced the glass and backing, painted and attached in place. Color-coordinated mini clothes pins hold the paper art in place, making it easy to change each one as a new month begins.

View the construction process in the following steps.

Here are the basic materials and supplies:
11x14 inch wooden frame (mine came from a consignment shop)
standard chicken wire mesh (home and garden or farm store; check your sharing neighbors who may have a small piece)
narrow wooden doweling, 2 each width & length pieces to match the back inset opening measurements
spray acrylic paint cream or white
hot glue for attaching doweling at back inset edges that also holds wire in place
tiny clothes pins painted to coordinate paper artwork (may want different sets)

Check the required measurements of the back inset; add 1" to each dimension to allow approx. 1/2" extra on each side.

Use wire cutters to trim out the size needed from the larger chicken wire piece or roll. Use the "finished" edge of the wire sheet, if possible. Take care to avoid injury from the pokey ends.

Spray paint cut-to-size wire piece and doweling. Apply at least two coats to each side. Apply clear acrylic finish coats if desired.

 Mold the wire piece to fit the inside back. Center the wire's pattern if possible. Trim excess from edges.

Use a flat head screw driver or similar tool to push/crimp the wire deep into the corner that previously held the backing. Repeat for all four edges. Adjust the wire as you work so that it is as flat and "taut" as possible.
Apply a neat bead of hot glue at the inset corner that will adhere wire ends and dowel. Press appropriate dowel piece tightly into the inset corner and hold securely until glue hardens. Repeat for all edges.

Paint the mini clothes pins with acrylic color of choice. Finish with clear top coat, if desired.

Here is the finished display frame. Artwork is pinned in place. Frame can be leaned against a wall or cabinet back, set in a counter-top easel  or hung on a wall (with appropriate hardware attached, or a decorative ribbon row hanger and wall nail). 

Likely you will find many pieces of your paper art to display on your new frame.

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