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Self-made accordion picture frame

The most personal gifts, whether for the family, friends or the partner, are and will remain to be shared memories, captured in photos. However, it's often really hard to decide on a single picture. Therefore, we spare you the agony of choice and show you how you can build a beautiful accordion picture frame out of two pictures. This personal gift idea with 3D effect is an absolute eye-catcher!

And that's how it works:

Material Tools
Chipboard Table saw
2 x photo posters (here 90x60 cm) Multi sander
Triangular wooden strips Screw clamps
Wooden strips for the frame Cordless drill
Glue stick / wood glue  
Scissors / carpet knife  
Colour paint for the frame  
Quick stick sanding paper KWB  

Step 1: The triangular wooden strips

In order to create the 3D effect we need triangular wooden strips. First we place those strips on our chipboard and draw the cut marks with a pencil. Then we can use a table saw to cut the wooden strips to the needed length. Alternatively, you can also work with a jigsaw or all-purpose saw. However, it is important that the strips are cut absolutely straight!

Step 2: The pictures

Now we start preparing the two pictures. We put the first picture on the chipboard and cut it to fit the canvas size. If you decided to take larger pictures, I recommend to fix the pictures with screw clamps while cutting them, so that nothing can slip.

When the first photo has been adjusted to the frame, we now place the first triangular wood strip on the left side of the picture and draw a line along the edge and cut this photo strip out. Then we take the next squared timber and draw right next to the first one again a line. All squared timbers are now placed chronologically on the image sections. It is important not to cut all strips with the same wooden batten, because not all of them have the identically size and this can therefore lead to unsightly overprints.

Afterwards, we do the same with the second photo. But here we take the other edge of the wooden strips as a measure!

Step 3: Glueing the photo strips to the triangular wooden strips

Then you can start with glueing. I chose wood glue because it promises a perfect and fast grip. For smaller projects a glue stick would be also sufficient. We now paint the triangular wooden strips as well as the picture strips with wood glue. But watch out for excess glue and remove it immediately, if there is one.

Step 4: Glueing the wooden strips to the chipboard

Before glueing, I sanded the chipboard with my cordless multi-sander, so that my wooden strips would stick well later. However, before we start glueing, the dust should be removed from the wood panel. Furthermore you should lean a wooden battern at the top of the plate as an orientation while glueing. This allows us to align our wood strips perfectly.

Make sure to put the glue on the wooden plate step by step only, because the glue dries very fast and the wooden strips otherwise would not hold properly.

If the wood panel is a bit warped now, you can put something heavy on the photo before attaching the frame rails. But be careful not to scratch your picture!

I then fixed the frame rails on the long sides with screws. Alternatively, you can of course use nails as well. The side panels can be then glued. For smaller pictures all frame borders can be glued.

And now the cool 3D accordion picture is ready and can beautify your apartment!

Have fun while building it!

AuthorNicole Polkehn
Reading time6 minutes

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