Easy DIY Ideas: Decorate With Your Photos

Are digital images of special people and once-in-a-lifetime events distant memories in your Instagram account or cloud storage? How thick is the dust on top of your shoeboxes stuffed full of 4×6 prints? If you can relate, it’s time to bring those fabulous photos out into the light where you can enjoy them every day and share these priceless moments with others.


Photo ledge

Turn a flea market remnant piece of wood into a defining piece on your entry wall. A lot of times those architectural salvage pieces are just deep enough to hold small things—or a few photo printouts like we’ve shown.

Gather Your Materials



Using Provence, paint a rough first coat on your flea market piece concentrating color in any grooves and inset areas. Let dry.


Paint a final coat of Pure White over the top. Sand down on edges.


Attach eye hooks in corners.


Hang on wall using sawtooth hooks, or a wall cleat, depending on the weight
of the piece.


Tie string to the eye hooks, making sure to pull the line tight. Hang photos with clips.


Photos on painted ledge

Black-and-white images and old family album photos take on timeless appeal when transferred onto wood. It’s especially good for high contrast images—especially black and whites and those old family album photos. The wood grain lends a bit of timelessness and vintage texture to the photos.

Gather Your Materials

  • Wood plaque (Or a piece of wood cut down to size, most hardware stores will cut them down for you.)
  • Wood sawtooth hanger
  • Overhead transparency sheets (make sure the surface is slick)
  • Black and white or color photo to print & ink jet printer (what most people have at home)
  • Sponge and water
  • Spoon


Push sawtooth hanger into one side of the wood plaque.


Size picture in a photo editing program, add contrast to the photo, then print on a transparency sheet. Some transparency sheets have one side that feels rougher– don’t print on this side, make sure to use the side that is slick— so when it comes time to transfer, that ink will slide right off it and onto your wood plaque.


Burnish photo on wood plaque


Once the transparency sheet has printed out, place it ink-side down on a wood plaque that’s very slightly dampened by a sponge and water.


Burnish the printed transparency down with a spoon, holding the transparency in place. Go over the sheet a few times to ensure a good transfer. Don’t shift the sheet while you’re doing this, or the transfer might blur a little.


Remove photo transfer

Practice on a scrap piece of wood, or the backside of the wood piece. You might have to up the contrast of your photo to get the best transfer. Experiment with different grains too—rougher grains add a more rustic appearance to the transfer. Smoother grains result in a smooth and precise transfer. Stain or varnish as desired.


Framed photo booth shots

What do you do with those tiny, usually grainy photo booth pics—the ones you probably have under a magnet on your fridge? Scan ‘em in or take a picture of each shot of the photo booth pic with your iPhone. Then, upload the images (we had three) onto Spoonflower.com. Print them large on 100% cotton fabric. The texture of the fabric is super forgiving and perfect for this kind of project! Even better, the cost is about $50 (fabrics, frame & paint).


Materials for photo booth hanging

Gather Your Materials

  • Spoonflower fabrics with printed image on 100% cotton (Spoonflower.com)
  • Canvas wooden stretchers pieces at a desired length (available at art stores or online)
  • Pins
  • Staple gun
  • ½ yard white felt (for backing the fabric)
  • Ribbon


Assemble canvas stretchers


Connect corners of wooden canvas stretchers—they are made to notch together easily. No need to nail or glue! This is the beauty of canvas stretchers—you can create a variety of different sizes and there’s no need for power tools or miter saws.


Paint frame with Annie Sloan Pure White. Let dry. Sand lightly and wipe down.


Iron and then lay out fabrics (and white felt backing) in a lineup, underneath the frame. Once you have the crop you want, pin the fabrics together. Cut fabric down to the size of the frame.

Tip: Clamp in four corners so things don’t shift when you go to flip all of it on its backside.


Cut fabrics to size, so that there is about one inch of excess on the backside of frame.


Photo booth frame


Flip the fabrics and frame carefully over, line up and staple along edges, doing opposing sides or the centers, then ending with the corners, pulling taut each time you staple. Add staples and pull tight (but not so tight that you tear it) on the fabric until there are no more wrinkles on the front side. Tip: If you made a mistake, no worries—just yank the staple out and try again!


Finish off by cutting a length of ribbon and stapling a loop to the backside for easy hanging.


Finished photo booth frame on wall

We screwed a cute knob into the wall and hung it from that over a comfy entry bench.


Photography by Jay Wilde
Produced by Katie Leporte

© Caruth Studio

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1 Comment

  1. It looks so adorable…one can enhance their home wall by making this frame…Good artwork…Thank you for sharing ideas.

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