For my upcycling project, I decided to make a picture frame using a mid century modern aesthetic. I choose this aesthetic because I like the principals of using different materials, while remaining somewhat minimal in design. I also enjoy photography as a hobby and wanted to make a custom frame for my favorite pictures.
CAD assembly of picture frame
So far, I have collected several 2 inch by 1 inch pieces of wood, but I doubt that it will be enough for the frame. To solve this, I am considering using different types of wood for each layer, just in case I cannot find a similar size and color wood as the ones I have found already. I am not too concerned about this part because if needed, I can just scrap the pieces I found and find a piece that is large enough to complete the project.
I remembered I picked up a picture frame from a thrift store awhile ago, but I haven’t used it because when I got home I found out it was broken. So, to reuse it, I am planning on taking the glass pane out and using it on this project. One of my main concerns earlier in the project was finding the correct size glass, if I couldn’t, I’d have to cut the glass down to size, which I have never attempted before. Reusing my old frame’s glass should work out perfectly because it is already sized for a standard 16 inch by 20 inch picture. I also pulled the hardware off to reuse on my frame.
The last main component of the picture frame is the metal layers. I haven’t found my material yet, but I did find several sheets and bars of aluminum and steel at the BTU lab on campus. I was looking for a bar that was approximately an eighth inch, but I didn’t find enough. My plan is to check the other maker spacers across campus and see if I can find a single piece to complete the project.
To actually make the frame, I plan on using the idea forge’s mills, drills, and saws. I was hoping to use the ITLL but there were no available workshops to gain access there in time. If I can find all my materials by the weekend, I should have plenty of time to manufacture the frame the following week. Fortunately, I have experience using the tools needed for my project so I shouldn’t be spending too much time learning how. I do think the majority of the manufacturing time will come from the small details of trying to smoothly transition the layer from wood to metal.