Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Teacher Appreciation Project - Create a Frame

This project was created for publication for Think Crafts. It's a project that does take a couple hours from start to finish between paint layers, so be sure to give yourself enough time to finish it. This is is a great gift idea for teacher's for Teacher's Appreciation Week.  A custom frame could also be made for Mother's Day or Father's Day too.

Materials Needed:

Unfinished Wood Frame (with wood center piece that is removeable)
Acrylic Paint
Paint Brushes
Chalk Board Paint
Character buttons (large) or other embellishments
E-6000 Glue
Mod Podge Clear Acrylic Sealer (Gloss)


1. Take the wrapping off of the unfinished wood frame, and remove the center wood piece so that it is easier to paint.

2. Paint the wood center piece with chalk board paint. (hint: paint a primer coat before painting the chalk board paint so that it will go on smoother.)

3. Let the chalk board paint dry completely between layers. At least 3 coats of the chalk board paint is needed.

4. Begin painting the unfinished wood frame. It is recommended to use a primer coat before using the frame color. The primer coat will soak into the wood and make the acrylic paint go on smoother. In the example, a shiny acrylic paint was used.

5. Let the acrylic paint in between layers. 2-3 layers of paint will provide a nice covering. Let dry completely before painting designs.

6. With a small brush, paint embellishments onto the frame. In the example, I painted leaves and flowers to go along with the ladybug buttons that I chose for my embellishments.

7. After the painting is complete, let dry. Anywhere from a few hours to overnight will be needed.

8. Spray with Mod Podge (Gloss) Clear Acrylic Sealer over top of the entire frame. Be sure to seal the sides too.

9. After the Clear Acrylic Sealer is dry, then it is time to glue on the embellishments. In the example, I used large ladybug buttons. I used a pair of scissors to remove the thread hole so that the buttons would glue flat.

10. Using E-600 Glue, affix the buttons or other embellishments onto the frame and let dry.

11. When the frame is completely dry, put the chalk board painted wood piece back in the center of the frame as shown in the photo.

12. To complete the gift, add some ribbon or tulle to dress it up. You can write a note or thank you on the chalk board. Another idea for gift wrapping is to include a colorful piece of chalk, and enclose the frame in a cello bag and tie with a ribbon. Attach a hand made card, and you have a special gift for a special teacher!

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