Books Advises

Frame It!
by Tonia Davenport


Framing isn't something one has to leave to the professional.

With Frame It! readers will learn how to use ready-made frames and inexpensive framing materials to create frames perfect for their favorite photo, piece of artwork, canvases or souvenir.


How to Make Your Own
Picture Frames

Ed Reinhardt, Hal Roger


Excellent book for the beginner. Clear and concise. Step-by-step instructions with photos for each and every step.

This book covers all aspects of frame construction, painting, mats, glass-cutting and usage. A great book to trigger your own ideas to create custom frames.


Matting and framing made

Janean Thompson



Since the cost of framing often exceeds the price of the artwork itself, it pays to know how to do it yourself.

Even if you're not ready to invest in specialty tools like a mat cutter or miter box, you'll find useful instructions on working with ready-made frames using simple tools (a ruler and utility knife)...


How to build your tripod display mini-easels (1)


Sometimes we find these mini-easels in art stores and they are proving very useful for displaying small frames, scrapbooking pages format or even small painted canvases.

mini easel #1

I propose to make yourself so easy. You even have the choice between two models!

The advantage is that you can make them "with your measurements" and you will choose their completion according to your suitability… this for a ridiculous cost price…


List of supplies:

. 2m batten 1/2"x 1".
. A screw "metal" of 1" (3cm long and 5mm in diameter) with its nut
. Two wood screws 1".
. Wood glue.
. An hobby picture framer saw.

Making of tripod easel#1

In the batten 1/2"x1", start by cutting 3 lengths 14": This will be the legs of the easel. To facilitate assembly, you have to cut beveled ends of two of these parts ( side feet).

For this, use the picture framer saw... Set the blade on the scale 60 °, place the batten against the frame on the left and saw to get a cut "in whistle" ... This will give you the correct angle for your installation.

Dcutting mini easel sides

Repeat the same operation for the second lateral component.

On your work plan, approach the 3 parts by keeping them in their place. With a drill and a 5mm drill, drill simultaneously the 3 battens .

Before putting the screw, countersink slightly outside holes with a drill a bit larger (8mm). It is simply for aesthetics (so that the screw and the nut are lightly built in and therefore not visible when the tripod is finished).

mini easel screwing

Give also a good shot of sandpaper and round the ends near the axis screw. Then fasten with the screw of 3cm and tighten the nut sufficiently so the friction is soft.

Support for the artworks

Now cut two lengths of 12" of batten. Spread out a small net of wood glue over one side of a batten and apply the other over forming the “90° angle”.

Tighten so that the assembly is solid (screw clamps or small points)… You will fix this angle, when the adhesive is quite dry, with two screws to the front legs : Pay attention to obtain a quite horizontal supportl !

The easel is now complete : you can leave it as is... or varnish or even coloring and waxing. And without delay, expose your works !



Here is a second model, larger than first, and will give you satisfaction for frames and canvas up to 20" high.

mini easel #2

And, as the first one, it is entirely built out of 1"x1/2" batten that you'll easily find in your hardware stores.

It is built entirely "flat" which greatly simplifies the installation!

For reasons of robustness, the components are glued and nailed !

List of supplies:

. 4m batten 1/2"x1".
. A wood screws to 30x5 (3cm long and 5mm in diameter)
. Small wire nails called "headless nails"
. Wood glue.
. A picture framer saw with its adjustable stop.

Making of the easel # 2

The high slide

In the batten 1/2"x1", cut two lengths of 16" (slide high), length 15" (back leg) and a length of 2" (the spacer).

Put the leg sandwiched between two uprights placed on their edge by making them overlap on 5". See photo #1...

Drill the 3 parts simultaneously and fix them together with your wood screw… (if this one exceeds, you will be able to file the surplus).

Check that the leg turns freely while rubbing gently.


At the other end paste the 2" spacer and tighten with a clamp. This will provide the necessary rigidity to your high slide.

mini easel #2 making of    mini easel #2 making of

The transverse

Cut now, in the batten 1/2"x1" two transverse measuring respectively 7 1/2" and 11".

Yo've now to fix them to the high slide by sticking them and nailing with small wire nails on each piece (attention to leave free the back foot). Look at the photo lower...

The space between these 2 tranverses is about 4" of each other ... like as on the picture #2.

The smallest transverse is fixed at the ankle back ... the other is virtually fixed at the lower end of the upper slide.


Cut two legs of 16" each. Arrange them on each side of the assembly. Glue and nail the 2 legs to the transverses.

(click pour +)

At this level, check the symmetry of each leg relative to the back leg.


Cut two 18" lengths last ... Stick and nail the first one to the 2 front legs about 4" high.

mini easel #2 making of

Glue now the second length side and place it perpendicular to the first for creating a right angle.

mini easel #2 making of

Put some clamps during the drying of the glue .

Your tripod easel is finished ... and ready to expose your frames :

Chevalet hommage à Cudennec


Next ...

Want to build this mini-easel more elaborate ?

mini mini easel #3



A genuine artist easel !

If you want to build easily a true artist studio easel... you can use when you paint at home, go to that page...

Build an easel

In my workshop, I have 3 studio easels built on this model... perfectly working !