Repurposed Rainbow Gallery Wall

Claire Armstrong
by Claire Armstrong
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).

Resources for this project:
Any price and availability information displayed on [relevant Amazon Site(s), as applicable] at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.
Hometalk may collect a small share of sales from the links on this page.More info
Claire Armstrong
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!
Frequently asked questions
Have a question about this project?
  1 question
  • Ellen Ellen on Oct 29, 2019

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

Join the conversation
4 of 56 comments
  • Jenny Jenny on Oct 30, 2021

    WOW Ellen, a lovely idea, which turned out beautiful! Thanks for sharing. I didn’t even know you could get free printable s so you’ve really inspired me 😊

  • Deborah Frakes Deborah Frakes on Sep 01, 2022

    Such a fun idea!!!!

    Think would also look nice with pictures that are seasonal. Fall Christmas patriotic one Halloween valentines etc.

    Thanks for ideas.💖💖💖 I like picking up frames garage sales etc.