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Personalized Picture Frames

Frugal Crafts and Homemade Gifts (featured column)
Submitted by Debra Conklin

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A few years ago, my financial situation was grim, but I still wanted to give thoughtful presents. So one day, as I was browsing through the inexpensive picture frames, at a local department store, I came upon the idea of a meaningful Christmas gift that wouldn’t break my budget.

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As I stared at those picture frames I began to envision how the white matting, within the frames, might look if I decorated them with my own personal touch. That idea became that year’s Christmas present to all my family members. A gift they still say they loved.

Items needed:

Picture frames (preferably those with a blank, white matting)
Favorite photos
Markers or colored pencils
Sew-on patches (found in the fabric department)
Buttons (if you’re going to use them inside the frame, cut off the back loops. The buttons need to lie flat inside the frame.)
Edging or fabric trim


1. Remove the inside matting from the frame.

2. Decorate matting to reflect your personal style or the style of the recipient, if it’s a gift.

3. Using the glue gun, glue on any patches, decals, buttons or trim that you’ve chosen.

4. After replacing the mat, decorate the frame with the fabric trim or edging.

5. Once the glue has dried, carefully trim away any glue strings that might be hanging from your frame.

Another idea is to frame and decorate special occasion cards.  Instead of tucking them inside a bureau drawer, frame and decorate them.  It will make the giver realize how special those cards really are.

Have fun and be sure to let your imagination fly.

Here's some more samples that will help you get started...

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Return to Homemade Gift Ideas

Copyright © 2007 by Debra Conklin. All rights reserved.

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