Repurposed Rainbow Gallery Wall

3 Materials
2 Hours

Every time I visit a charity/thrift shop always in the corner somewhere is a pile of old photo frames. Often they contain photos of old dogs or embroidery samples. Mostly, though these frames are pretty ugly and dated. Well last time I visited my local junk shop I managed to pick up a pile of the frames for almost nothing. It cost me about £2 ($3) for dozen frames. I wanted to use the frames to create a fabulous gallery wall of these amazing colourful vintage bird prints (see here).

These are some of the frames I got.

I gathered the mishmash of old paints and paint samples I had lying in my shed. Chalky paints are best for this if you have them as you don't need to prime the frames first.

Next, I removed the photos and glass from each framed and painted them in an array of colours.

Once the paint had dried I measured the width and height of each frame.

I then printed a bird picture (link at end) to fit each frame. Not only did I fit the bird to each frame I tried to match the colours too. So for a red frame I printed a bird with red in it and so on.

I printed the bird prints onto ivory coloured paper for a more vintage look.

Once all the frames were filled. I lay them out on the ground to see how they looked.

I had a large old picture frame which I painted white. I decided to create my gallery wall in this frame so that it was easy to move around when I wanted to change wall displays.

If you don't have a large frame you can just hang the pictures straight onto the wall.

I just used double sided mounting tape to hang the frames.

I love this so much I'm on the hunt for more frames to make one using these gorgeous free vintage flower illustrations (see here).

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Claire Armstrong

Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!


Have a question about this project?

1 question
  • Ellen
    on Oct 29, 2019

    What did you use to back the big old frame? Cardboard? Luan wood?

    • Claire Armstrong
      on Oct 29, 2019

      It was some backing board from my local art shop. I think it is thick cardboard.

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