home decorating http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/8804/all en-US Hang Frames Perfectly Every Time With These 5 Picture Hanging Hacks http://www.wisebread.com/hang-frames-perfectly-every-time-with-these-5-picture-hanging-hacks <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/hang-frames-perfectly-every-time-with-these-5-picture-hanging-hacks" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/frame-4154955-small.jpg" alt="woman holding frame" title="woman holding frame" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="188" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>As someone who's always decorating and redecorating my home, I hang a lot of frames. I tend to buy inexpensive frames from crafts stores, because I can usually score a deep discount by hitting up a sale and using a coupon. While these frames look good aesthetically, they're not always high quality. You know what I'm talking about &mdash; tiny hooks on the back that are sometimes uneven, turning the hanging process into a frustrating experience that results in more holes in the wall than I want. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-cheap-home-decorating-projects-that-look-amazing">Cheap Home Decorating Projects That Look Amazing</a>)</p> <p>Through trial and error over the years, however, I've perfected my picture-frame hanging game, instituting several tactics to make sure they're always level and looking like they were put up by a professional. Check out my picture hanging secrets below.</p> <h2>1. Use Painter's Tape to Mark and Level</h2> <p>One neat trick that I found over at PetaPixel is to <a href="http://petapixel.com/2012/05/29/using-tape-to-hang-your-pictures-picture-perfect/">use painter's tape to mark the distance between two-hole or two-hook frames</a>. Once you've measured the distance with the tape on the frame, transfer the tape to the wall and use a level to make sure the frame will hang evenly. Then, drive your nails into the wall at each end of the tape. Your frame should slide perfectly into the holes or hooks if you've done it correctly.</p> <h2>2. Use a Clothespin and Nail for Accurate Hanging</h2> <p>Crafty blogger Michele, author of The Scrap Shoppe, shows how to <a href="http://www.thescrapshoppeblog.com/2011/07/picture-frame-hanging-tip.html">make a great picture-hanging tool using a clothespin and a nail</a>. Basically you'll drive a small nail into the bottom of the clothespin so just a small portion of the tip is poking out. Hold the clothespin from the top as you place the frame hook on the head side of the nail. Once you have the picture in place, lightly tap the frame so the pointy side of the nail makes an indentation on the wall. The indentation is where you'll drive the nail and hang the frame.</p> <h2>3. Hang a Grid of Frames Using a DIY Tool</h2> <p>Hanging a grid of frames &mdash; that is, several frames together vertically or horizontally &mdash; can be a nightmare project if you don't have the right tools. Thankfully, crafty Kelly, author of the blog <a href="http://www.viewalongtheway.com/">View Along the Way</a>, has come up with a simple way to reduce the stress of this project by fashioning a tool out of a paint stirrer and a screw. The concept is based on the <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B003Z9JN3I/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B003Z9JN3I&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20" target="_blank">Hang &amp; Level tool</a>, which retails for about $15, so it's nothing short of awesome that she gives us instructions on how to make our own. Once you've fashioned your handy picture-hanging tool, you can start assembling the grid of frames one by one fairly easily. You can <a href="http://www.viewalongtheway.com/2011/08/frame-hanging-hack-how-to-get-ikea-ribba-frames-to-behave/">find full instructions on Kelly's helpful blog</a>. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cheap-ways-to-display-your-art">Cheap Ways to Display Art</a>)</p> <h2>4. Use Picture Wire for Frames With Double Hooks</h2> <p>Many large frames come with double hooks &mdash; one on each side &mdash; to distribute the weight because they're so heavy. Anybody who has tried to hang these on nails using the hooks alone will tell you how frustrating it is trying to ensure its levelness. I have lots of miscalculated nail holes to prove my own frustration. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/two-dozen-uses-for-toothpaste-aside-from-cleaning-your-teeth">Use Toothpaste to Fill In Nail Holes</a>)</p> <p>To combat this problem, use picture wire and string it through both hooks. The picture wire will come with instructions on how to properly tie and secure it. When attaching the wire, make sure it's tight; you don't want the wire to hang higher than the picture, a consequence I had to learn the hard way and subsequently redo. Once the wire is attached, place your nail in the wall. When you hang the picture, you can adjust it by simply moving the frame left or right to ensure levelness. Gravity does the rest.</p> <h2>5. Invest in a Picture Frame Level</h2> <p>If you don't want to fuss with picture wire, there's an alternative solution: the <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000UKMWMO/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B000UKMWMO&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20" target="_blank">ACCU-MARK picture-hanging level from Black &amp; Decker</a>.</p> <p>A few years ago I saw a commercial for this level and I had to have it. It's one of the most ingenious products &mdash; in my humble opinion at least &mdash; and one of the best purchases I've ever made. As part of the design the level has sliding targets that you can place on top of the hooks of your frame. When you've set the targets, take the level to the wall, find the level and centered spot, and nail your holes through the targets. If you've done this correctly, you should be able to take the frame to the wall and hang it on the nails without issue. It's nothing less than sheer brilliance, and totally worth the investment. For more complete instructions on how to use the ACCU-MARK picture-hanging level,<a href="http://www.wikihow.com/Use-the-Black-%26-Decker-AccuMark-Picture-Hanging-Level"> check out this step-by-step guide</a>.</p> <h2>Picture-Hanging Videos</h2> <p>Some of us are verbal learners, and some of us are visual learners. Most of the links above take you to pages that have images. But if you need some more guidance, check out this <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=520BvfFLS-Q">online tutorial that will explain the picture-hanging process</a> visually:</p> <p><iframe width="605" height="454" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/520BvfFLS-Q"></iframe></p> <p>And <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=idKXUOtTn9I">this tutorial will show you how to evenly hang three photos in a row</a>:</p> <p><iframe width="605" height="340" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/idKXUOtTn9I"></iframe></p> <p><em>Do you have tips on how to hang frames perfectly? Let me know in the comments below.</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/hang-frames-perfectly-every-time-with-these-5-picture-hanging-hacks">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/free-or-cheap-wall-art">Free or Cheap Wall Art</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-clutter-keeps-you-poor">8 Ways Clutter Keeps You Poor</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/31-essential-kitchen-tools-all-frugal-cooks-need">31 Essential Kitchen Tools All Frugal Cooks Need</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-ways-to-make-living-with-roommates-tolerable">11 Ways to Make Living With Roommates Tolerable</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/secret-lawn-tonic-recipe-from-golf-course-groundskeeper">Secret Lawn Tonic Recipe From Golf Course Groundskeeper</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Home home decorating picture hanging Tue, 01 Oct 2013 09:36:03 +0000 Mikey Rox 993573 at http://www.wisebread.com Free or Cheap Wall Art http://www.wisebread.com/free-or-cheap-wall-art <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/free-or-cheap-wall-art" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/2783845935_24dcacaebf_z.jpg" alt="framed art" title="framed art" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Most of us would love to have beautiful art decorating the walls of our homes, but we can't always afford to buy expensive prints and canvases. Fortunately, there is a wealth of ways to decorate the walls of your home that will have your friends admiring the beauty of your décor &mdash; and are cheap or entirely free! From art that you print off the Internet to simple paintings that you create yourself, here's a roundup of great ideas for free and cheap wall art. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-home-decorating-ideas-for-under-5" title="15 Home Decorating Ideas for Under $5">15 Home Decorating Ideas for Under $5</a>)</p> <h2>Print Art From the Internet</h2> <p>The web is a great resource for beautiful and free art that can easily be printed if you have a printer, and framed in cheap frames from IKEA or upcycled from the thrift store. <a title="Feed Your Soul" href="http://indiefixx.com/Feed_your_soul/downloads.html">Feed Your Soul &mdash; The Free Art Project</a> is an excellent source for beautiful illustrations by bona-fide artists that this website makes available for free download. <a title="The Graphics Fairy" href="http://graphicsfairy.blogspot.com/">The Graphics Fairy</a> is a website that provides free vintage graphics for download. Print off a few of these color or black-and-white beauties, frame them, and create a gallery cluster of the pretty images. <a title="Taidye Original" href="http://taidyeoriginal.blogspot.com/p/printables.html">Taidye Original</a> and <a title="MissKrissie" href="http://missiekrissie.blogspot.com/p/free-letter-jpgs.html">MissKrissie</a> both have some pretty typographical images that you can download and print.</p> <p>Also, did you know that you can download digital images of vintage magazines from <a title="Google Books" href="http://books.google.com/books?id=R1cEAAAAMBAJ&amp;source=gbs_navlinks_s#all_issues_anchor">Google Books</a>? Print off some full-color covers from Life Magazine, or some of the vintage advertisements you'll find within its pages, and frame them to immortalize some of the biggest events of the last century.</p> <h2>Frame Fabric and Other Patterns</h2> <p>Got a few vintage embroidered handkerchiefs from your granny? Or a piece of silk from that trip to Asia? A bit of lace from your mother's wedding dress? Or how about a few leftover scraps of fabric from your last curtain or upholstery project? Use the fabric you've got lying around the house, or buy a few inexpensive remnants from the fabric store, and set them in frames to showcase the textures, patterns, and colors of the cloth.</p> <p>Along the same lines, you aren't limited to fabric when it comes to framing pretty prints and textures. Try framing a few pieces of sheet music for a classic, cultured look. Or show off some pretty wrapping paper, which looks great under glass, but is also cheap and easy to swap out when you want to change things up.</p> <h2>Pressed Botanicals</h2> <p>Save flowers and pretty leaves from your garden by pressing them between the pages of a few heavy books, and then framing them once they're dry. Create a grouping with similar botanicals for a more focused effect.</p> <h2>Thrifted Art</h2> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/guerrilla-thrift-shopping-the-9-laws-of-profit" title="Guerrilla Thrift Shopping: The 9 Laws of Profit">Thrift stores</a>, estate sales, and garage sales are great sources for cheap original art. True, many of the paintings are from unknown or amateur artists, but they can still be charming and more interesting than some of the generic art you can buy at the home décor store. I have found acrylic paintings of flowers, fruit, and local landscapes, and my sister and I have both picked up lovely framed botanical prints.</p> <h2>Buy Art While Traveling</h2> <p>My travels abroad have been a rich source for affordable but unique art that never fails to ignite a conversation. In Egypt, I picked up a couple of Eastern Orthodox prints that were printed on real papyrus, and an oil painting I bought in Vietnam hangs above my bed. In Laos and Thailand, I saw hundreds of beautiful prints of trees and elephants printed on thin rice paper. In China, scrolls of ink calligraphy and landscapes went for a few dollars each. Roll up your art securely in a paper tube and it will survive the trip home without problems, and will serve as both a souvenir of your trip and a unique conversation-starter.</p> <h2>Make Your Own Art</h2> <p>Whether it's a collage of all the beer labels you've collected over the years or a spectacular painting on canvas, art that you make yourself can be memorable and meaningful. Try creating your own twist on Rothko's abstract paintings by painting blocks of color on a large canvas. Or create a drip painting à la Jackson Pollock. If you're not up to creating a painting, what about simple wall art made up of <a title="toilet paper roll art" href="http://www.designsponge.com/2009/11/diy-project-toilet-paper-roll-wall-art.html">toilet paper rolls</a>? There are all sorts of crafty solutions to an empty wall, and your imagination is the limit.</p> <h2>Buy It</h2> <p>There are lots of budding artists that sell limited edition prints on <a title="Etsy" href="http://www.etsy.com">Etsy</a> for very affordable prices, and <a title="eBay" href="http://www.ebay.com">eBay</a> can also be a good source for affordable art. For limited edition prints by up-and-coming artists, check out the website <a title="20x200" href="http:// http://www.20x200.com/home">20x200</a>, which carries many prints for just $20, making fine art accessible to more and more people.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/camilla-cheung">Camilla Cheung</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/free-or-cheap-wall-art">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-beautiful-things-you-can-make-with-paint-sample-cards">25 Beautiful Things You Can Make With Paint Sample Cards</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/keeping-santa-sane-budget-holiday-decorating">Keeping Santa Sane: Budget Holiday Decorating</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cheap-ways-to-display-your-art">How to Cheaply Display Your Art</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-home-diy-projects-you-can-do-in-one-day">10 Home DIY Projects You Can Do in One Day</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-find-the-best-stuff-at-homegoods">How to Find the Best Stuff at HomeGoods</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Home art home decor home decorating Wed, 17 Aug 2011 10:36:15 +0000 Camilla Cheung 665806 at http://www.wisebread.com Stretch Out a Small Space http://www.wisebread.com/stretch-out-a-small-space <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/stretch-out-a-small-space" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000010097320XSmall.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="166" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>You&rsquo;ve finally found the space of your dreams, only it&rsquo;s not as spacious as it ought to be and now you don&rsquo;t know how you&rsquo;re going to fit all your goodies into the digs. In fact, the more you look at your space, the more you wonder how you even imagined you could fit everything into it, including yourself. Have no fear. There are tried and true design tips that work, regardless of the size of your room or apartment.</p> <h3>Pare down to just the basics</h3> <p>Deciding what you can&rsquo;t live without in your room and then working around that is your first step to pepping up a little space. It&rsquo;s especially important in small rooms to stick to the basics. In a bedroom, that would include the bed and probably a dresser. In an office, that would be the desk and a bookshelf which could double as a printer and photocopier stand. You might need to find different furniture or sell your old furniture to make it work.</p> <h3>Lighten it all up</h3> <p>The simplest thing to do is to brighten up your room. Keeping your curtains open and light streaming in creates the illusion of more space. Adding lamps helps too. A few here and there create focal spotlights at night. Another great trick is to add brighter bulbs to the room. General Electric, for instance, offers a great line of bulbs called Reveal that filter out the yellow rays and filter in clean, bright light, which is great for winter months in darker places.</p> <h3>Arrange furniture on a diagonal</h3> <p>You can create a visual distraction by arranging furniture on a diagonal. It breaks up the monotony of furniture lining the walls and creates a cool storage space right behind the furniture. I once stuff all of my unpacked boxes, sporting stuff I didn&rsquo;t need, behind a dresser I put on a diagonal in my studio apartment. You couldn&rsquo;t even see them unless you looked behind the dresser.</p> <h3>Pick a focal point</h3> <p>This is one of my favorite aspects of interior decorating: finding the perfect centerpiece for a room. What&rsquo;s the most eye-catching, in a good way, piece in your living room? Making that the focal point will liven up your space. If you have a stellar view of the mountains from your dining room, point the table in that direction. Similarly, if you have an amazing painting in your bedroom, put the bed right across from it. It gives you something to look at and makes the room pop.</p> <h3>Vary the textures in a space</h3> <p>All wood floors with all wood furniture makes for a dull room. But tossing a few Oriental or Mexican rugs on the floor can jazz it up. In a bedroom, you can add some solid colored pillows on top of a patterned comforter to break things up. Or silk pillows on top of a cotton bedspread. If you have a lot of pottery on the bookshelves as decoration, maybe you want to add some interesting photos in handmade frames in between pieces. The idea is to break up the monotony and add variety to the space. There are lots of options. Play around with them until you find the ones you like the best.</p> <p><em>These simple tricks can make your space feel like more and add some flair to your room. What are some ways you've managed to make the most of a small space?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sasha-a-rae">Sasha A. Rae</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/stretch-out-a-small-space">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cheap-ways-to-display-your-art">How to Cheaply Display Your Art</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/off-the-wall-21-clever-uses-for-leftover-wallpaper">Off the Wall: 21 Clever Uses for Leftover Wallpaper</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/top-5-online-resources-for-the-design-impaired">Top 5 Online Resources for the Design Impaired</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-your-kids-room-look-awesome-for-under-100">How to Make Your Kids Room Look Awesome for Under $100</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/remove-car-dents-quickly-and-cheaply">Remove Car Dents Quickly and Cheaply</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> DIY home decorating How-To Guide interior design Thu, 17 Dec 2009 15:00:14 +0000 Sasha A. Rae 4084 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Cheaply Display Your Art http://www.wisebread.com/cheap-ways-to-display-your-art <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/cheap-ways-to-display-your-art" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/frramed.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Custom framing your art is often more expensive than the art itself. How weird is that?</p> <p>There are so many places nowadays to find good, cheap art, but framing said art can be one of the most expensive aspects of decorating your home. Unless you have your own equipment or some killer coupons, professional framing can easily set you back $60-$200 per 8x10 piece of art. If you're like me, and have an eclectic collection of paintings, drawings, and collage, you probably also DON'T have the kind of dough it takes to professionally frame your whole collection.</p> <p>Well, there are plenty of ways to display your art that don't involve thumb tacks or poster putty (or pricey custom framing) that are still funky, fun, and cheap.</p> <h2>Framed Art</h2> <p>Oil paintings (and often acrylics, for that matter), aren't typically framed behind glass. They can be, but the glass has to be set off of the painting, because if it comes into contact with the paint, even if it's dry, the paint might stick to the glass. Oil paintings are typically made on canvas, and are stretched onto a wooden frame that gives them shape. You can add a frame to the outside or just hang a stretched canvas without a frame &mdash; my point is not to invest in a big heavy piece of glass if you don't need it.</p> <p>Similarly, posters can be mounted onto posterboard and framed with a simple poster frame that may or may not include glass &mdash; the less glass you use, the cheaper (and lighter) the end product is. Matting is always optional. The larger the matting, the more expensive the project, so for bigger pieces, you might want to avoid matting. However, pre-cut matting is fairly inexpensive and can really make a difference in the quality of a framed piece of art.</p> <h3>Premade frames</h3> <p>This isn't the cheapest option, because even premade frames aren't cheap, but they are easy to deal with and involve minimal effort on your behalf. Frames come in many different sizes, so you can find something to fit most any piece of art. When buying a frame, take the piece of art with you so that you can see how it will look in the frame. There are many different types of frames available these days: you can buy wooden or plastic frames, frames with or without glass or plastic covering the art, frames with or without matting, and even frames without frames (essentially a piece of glass and a piece of particle board that you stick your art between). Generally, the more ornate the frame, the more expensive it will be.</p> <p>You can buy frames at stores like Target or Walmart, although selection may be limited. Better options include art supply stores or frame stores &mdash; check your local paper for coupons or ask a store associate when the next big sale is in order to find the big savings. A simple frame for an 8x10 picture may be $20 on a normal day, but a sale day will knock that down to $10, easy. Aaron Brothers and Michael's (both stores have great selections) have amazing sales in which frames are reduced up to 75% off. Always keep your eyes peeled for coupons in your local paper or Valu-Pak. Also, in addition to the art and frames section of these stores, you may want to check out the wood projects and kids' sections. I've found thick, unfinished backless frames for $1.50 each. The frames were meant for kids to decorate with glitter and sequins, but they looked <em>amazing </em>framing some 4x4 color prints I had purchased on <a href="http://Etsy.com">Etsy</a>.</p> <p>If you are a good bargainer, it never hurts to befriend your local frame consultant to see if you can't buy some of the cast-offs or rejects &mdash; the frames that other people order, and then decide they don't want for whatever reason.</p> <p>By far the most consistently affordable place to buy ready-made picture frames is IKEA. If you happen to have a Swedish mega-maze somewhere near you, check out the frame selection on your next day-long venture.</p> <h3>Damaged frames</h3> <p>A smooth black picture frame is just about the easiest thing in the world to scratch or scuff, so frames with dings and divots are frequently tossed in the bargain bin as soon as they are unpacked. Lots of stores have their bargain section in a back corner, so always check there to see if there is something you can use. Most minor imperfections can either be easily fixed with some nail filler and black marker, or improved upon by &quot;distressing&quot; the entire frame with sandpaper so that it has that shabby chic look that is so desirable these days.</p> <h3>Buy pre-framed art and throw away the art</h3> <p>Department stores have more than their fair share of hideous pre-framed art. If you find a piece of pre-framed hideous art with a good frame, there's no need to keep the art. Just toss it out and insert your own awesome blacklight unicorn poster. Ross is particularly good for this.</p> <p>Used frames featuring all kinds of horrible art can be found at thrift stores, garage sales, flea markets, and next to dumpsters all over the country. You can keep the existing art or throw it away.</p> <p>Making an ugly frame look amazing doesn't take much effort &mdash; just some acrylic paint or a <a href="http://www.digsmagazine.com/lounge/lounge_spraypaint.htm">rattle can in an amazing color</a>, a well-ventilated area, and a good drop-cloth, and you've got yourself a snazzy, incredibly hip frame for your art. I've actually seen some pretty cool-looking rooms that are decorated entirely using empty picture frames that have all been painted the same awesome color, or <a href="http://www.marthastewart.com/portal/site/mslo/menuitem.3a0656639de62ad593598e10d373a0a0/?vgnextoid=4ea2b0a6e9074110VgnVCM1000003d370a0aRCRD&amp;vgnextfmt=default">simply matched</a> according to a general sense of aesthetics.</p> <p>Of course, if you have an entire tool shed just bursting with state-of-the-art miter saws and bevellers, you can always <a href="http://www.knottyplans.com/index.php?page=200421">make your own frames</a>.</p> <h3>Frameless frames</h3> <p>There are plenty of glass or Plexiglas &quot;frames&quot; that consists of a clear cover, a solid back, and small clips that allow you to protect and hang your art <a href="http://www.quadroframes.com/Products/Clip_Frames_Datasheet.htm">without a traditional &quot;frame&quot;</a>. I buy these in bulk at my local art supply store. Gallery-style frames are another option &mdash; a very thin plastic frame that barely shows allows you to place art inside and press a piece of <a href="http://www.photoframes.us.com/photo-frame.asp?ID=6124">glass or plastic into little grooves </a>in the front of the frame. Gallery frames are cheap, but do significantly limit the thickness of the piece you are displaying.</p> <h2>Hanging Art</h2> <p>Hanging framed art is an art in and of itself...or is it a science? In any case, there are many different ways to get the look that you want.</p> <p>If you want to hang frames in a gallery style, <a href="http://www.doityourself.com/stry/hangpicturehelp">take some advice</a> from the pros, like an <a href="http://www.popularmechanics.com/blogs/home_journal_news/4215826.html">actual curator</a>. Or, you may find it easier and more cathartic to cluster your framed art in a <a href="http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/sf/inspiration/displaying-artwork-039890">more unique and devil-may-care manner</a> that <a href="http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/sf/inspiration/inspiration-mismatched-frames-059384">doesn't depend on straight lines</a> and perfect corners.</p> <p>There are many different ways to hang framed art. Some people like to use eye-hooks/staples and wire across the back of the frame. The wire can be kept short, and tucked behind the picture so that the nail is hidden when the picture is hung, or long, so that the picture hangs down from a nail. I've seen really pretty hangings done using silk ribbon that is attached to the top back of the frame using strong staples.</p> <p><img alt="" style="width: 388px; height: 258px" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u14/hanging.jpg" /></p> <h2>Unframed Art</h2> <p>Of course, you can save a bundle on framing costs by simply skipping the frames altogether, There is plenty of art out there that doesn't have to be matted and framed; in fact, almost anything that is displayed with a certain amount of flair becomes art, like a wall covered in a <a href="http://www.designspongeonline.com/2009/04/diy-idea-paint-strip-wall-decoration.html">rainbow of paint chips</a> from Home Depot.</p> <p>For more traditional 2D art, like posters, paintings, and collages, you can either leave the art as-is, or have it mounted on a poster board to give a little more heft and to keep it from getting damaged. Posterboard is fairly inexpensive, and you can do the mounting yourself or have it done at a frame shop for a steal.</p> <h3>Wire and clips</h3> <p>This method is my favorite because it's easy, breezy, and slightly edgy. Take a long piece of wire (thinner gauges are better), some small nails, and a hammer. Pound the nails into your walls at whatever locations you feel are appropriate, and string the wire taught between them. It helps to angle the nails AWAY from the direction that the wire will be pulling. You can create a single horizontal line, <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/molly_orangette/2187860221/">many horizontal lines</a>, zigzag lines, vertical lines, or spider webs &mdash; it really doesn't matter. You can hang the wire up high and string it across a room, or stick to one wall or small area. Whatever <a href="http://www.curbly.com/alttext/posts/74-easy-photo-wall-on-a-shoestring-er-wire-budget">floats your boat</a>.</p> <p>Next, take a handful of clothespins (the newer kind works better than the old fashioned style) or binder clips, and attach your art wherever you like it. I like to hang concert posters high up on horizontal wires, and clip vintage postcards along vertical wires. A series of black and white photographs evokes a darkroom or photographer's studio. You can hang letters from your grandma, childhood mementos, potholders, jewelry or even air plants, if you want. Mixing up colors, sizes, and shapes is fun, or you can choose one particular style and stick with it. Variety is the spice of life, but not everyone likes as much spice as I do (for examples of both ways of thinking, check out <a href="http://www.designspongeonline.com/2009/09/sneak-peek-kevin-oshea.html">this apartment</a> featured on design*sponge).</p> <p>With a bit more effort, you can use clips sans wire to create a <a href="http://chicago.timeout.com/articles/home-living/27909/hang-art-without-a-frame">gallery-like arrangement</a> of unframed art. This method doesn't afford you as much flexibility with rearranging your collection, but looks clean and unencumbered.</p> <h3>Clothing hangers</h3> <p>A slightly less flexible way to show off your unframed pictures or posters is to hang wire clothing hangers from a nail in a prominent location, and then use clothes pins or binder clips to hang the art from the clothing hangers. Hangers are frequently used to make <a href="http://www.ehow.com/how_4886191_make-wire-hanger-mobile.html">mobiles for 3D art display</a>, so you can move the medium to the 2 dimensional for a new take on a common household item.</p> <h3>Clipboards</h3> <p>If you have lots of smaller pieces of art that you want to display, try hanging a series of clipboards on your wall. Art can be neatly pinned to the center of the clipboard, and the back of the board provides a frame in which to show off the art. A clipboard can be had for as little as $2 (I've seen them for $0.88 on some websites, but you have to consider shipping). Buy a couple dozen of them, and hang them in neat military lines or in a more random fashion. If the dark brown background of the clipboard doesn't suit you, you can always paint the clipboard white, yellow, or any hue that makes you smile and offsets your art collection.</p> <h3>Magnets</h3> <p>If you enjoy rearranging your collection, but have a morbid fear of nails and the damage they cause, you can turn a huge space into a magnetic board of your own with magnetic paint. Assuming you have the ability/right to paint your walls, you can create art spaces with a roller and a can of Rustoleum brand magnetic paint (runs about $30). Add some snazzy, <a href="http://www.kjmagnetics.com/proddetail.asp?prod=D4A">modern-looking magnets</a> for about $20. While $50 isn't a drop in the bucket, it's cheaper than framing your entire poster collection. A whole wall (or room) becomes your personal art gallery on which you can arrange your drawings, newspaper clippings, posters, collages, or anything else you can think of. The best part is you don't have to refill and touch up holes in the wall every time you want to rearrange your artwork.</p> <h2>The Art of Leaning</h2> <p>Whoever said that art had to be hung? One of my favorite ways to display my favorite large oil paintings is to set them on top of dressers or low bookshelves, or even rest them on the floor, leaning against the wall. The look is casual, you don't have to mar the walls with nail holes, and you can move stuff around without having to worry about busting out the measuring tape or level.</p> <p>&nbsp;<img alt="" style="width: 376px; height: 282px" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u14/leaning.jpg" /></p> <p>*This advice doesn't necessarily apply to art that you consider highly valuable or a collector's item of some kind &mdash; for those, do consider a professional framing job to protect the artwork from light and time.*</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-karim">Andrea Karim</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cheap-ways-to-display-your-art">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/stretch-out-a-small-space">Stretch Out a Small Space</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-a-crafty-airbrush-out-of-old-junk">Make a crafty airbrush out of old junk</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/three-alternative-investments-for-long-term-enjoyment-and-appreciation">3 Alternative &quot;Investments&quot; for Long Term Enjoyment and Appreciation</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/free-or-cheap-wall-art">Free or Cheap Wall Art</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/decorating-a-living-room-for-you-and-your-money">Decorating a Living Room for You and Your Money</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> art Art and Leisure cheap decoration custom frame frame art home decorating How-To Guide interior decorating paintings Fri, 02 Oct 2009 15:53:30 +0000 Andrea Karim 3321 at http://www.wisebread.com Decorating a Living Room for You and Your Money http://www.wisebread.com/decorating-a-living-room-for-you-and-your-money <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/decorating-a-living-room-for-you-and-your-money" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/12237996_277dff3043_m.jpg" alt="living room" title="living room, by Okaggi" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="240" height="178" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>You live in it. It's your work space, your meal space, your resting space, your relaxing space. It's where you drop your things when you come home and where you search for them before you leave again. It's your living room, the place where much of your life unfolds. It's easy to let this room be the &quot;whatever&quot; room, the room where all the old or natty furniture goes because you don't have another place for it or money to buy more. It's easy to not decorate at all, because everything will be moved around and will get dirty and so what's the point.</p> <p>This room, however, sets the tone for your day. If you feel good about it when you walk through it in the morning, you'll feel good all day. If it's messy or ugly, you'll feel stressed or down. So make your living room a place where you can live, and live well. There are so many things you can do that don't cost much but make this room a better place.</p> <p><strong>Your Living Room Should Reflect You</strong></p> <p><img height="193" width="289" title="Halo Living Room" alt="Halo Living Room" src="http://healthcarehacks.com/files/fruganomics/u9/1394346975_41227cea38.jpg" /></p> <p>What do you like to do? How can you make your living room reflect that. The room above was designed around playing Halo. If you like to read, maybe think about adding some creative book shelves. If you like photography, think about incorporating some of your own work into the room. A real llfe example sits in our living room and draws comments every day. My husband loves to collect toys from his childhood. He has an old Voltron who sits on top of one of our shelves. A little odd? Sure, but it's completely &quot;us&quot; and makes for some great conversation.</p> <p><strong>Your Living Room Should be Comfortable</strong></p> <p><img height="224" width="290" title="Big Comfy Couch" alt="Big Comfy Couch" src="http://healthcarehacks.com/files/fruganomics/u9/1286637407_71fcbc6e7f.jpg" /></p> <p>You should be able to rest, relax, and do the rest of what you do in your living room without pain, awkwardness, or discomfort. Do not skimp on this! A little discomfort goes a long way towards raising frustration and irritation levels. If you need new furniture, search the sales. If you can't find anything that's affordable or that you like, try <a title="Make Your Own Beanbags" href="http://www.instructables.com/id/bean-bag-sofa-%2F-bed/">making your own</a> beanbag chairs and couches. It's not crazy expensive, you can customize the fabric and the feel, and it's a great project for the whole family to work on together.</p> <p><strong>Change What Needs to be Changed Without Breaking the Bank</strong></p> <p><img height="211" width="281" title="Bar Chairs Brought Back from the Dead" alt="Bar Chairs Brought Back from the Dead" src="http://healthcarehacks.com/files/fruganomics/u9/181895779_70db113db0.jpg" /></p> <p>It's easy to change the color scheme and feel of a room with a staple gun and some fun fabric. For chairs like those above, take off the seat, staple the new fabric on (be sure you pull tight!), and you have brand new chair! You can also staple fabric swathes to the wall, for come broader color change, or around pillows for some highlights (watch the staples on that one...it's easier than sewing, but you don't want to be inflicting puncture wounds!). I even know someone who recovered her whole couch this way!</p> <p>It's also easy to change colors with some paint. Anything wooden can be painted, with the right preparation (check at your local hardware store for their recommendations, and sometimes paint prep can change with climate). Adding a little color to something old or battered can disguise the damage and make it seem as good as new.</p> <p>Create some space by clearing off the tops of surfaces and the space on bookshelves between the book and the edge of the shelf. This will give your room some of that spacious, airy, contemporary feel with little to no work on your part.</p> <p>Add some plants to your room for a more outdoorsy feel. If you're cautious about live plants, go to your local craft store and get some pretty dried or plastic plants. Displayed properly, no one will care that they're not real and you'll still have that vibrant, alive vibe goine on.</p> <p>Use your storage space creatively. Maybe everyone in your home can have a basket of their very own, and you can cover those with creative material when they're not in use. Or maybe you have space under your end tables or inside your coffee table where you can store some of the items you use everyday. This adds to the general tidiness, doesn't cost much at all, and helps you feel like you have a handle on all that clutter!</p> <p>Last, but not least, care for your carpet. Dirty carpet is frustrating and annoying, but it's easy to clean. Many carpet cleaning services offer special deals if you have them do more than one room or if your room is a certain size. You can also rent a machine and clean your own carpet, though the hassle involved here might make you wish you'd paid someone else to do it, particularly if you're living in a small space where moving your furniture around is an obnoxious job. Finally, you can get some rugs or <a title="Crochet rag rug" href="http://www.diynetwork.com/diy/lv_floors_ceilings/article/0,2041,DIY_14112_2269669,00.html">make one yourself</a>. They'll protect the carpet and add whatever color you choose.</p> <p>Above all, decide to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cheap-home-furnishings" title="Cheap Home Furnishing Ideas">redecorate</a> and the inspiration will come! Happy decorating!</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sarah-winfrey">Sarah Winfrey</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/decorating-a-living-room-for-you-and-your-money">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cheap-ways-to-display-your-art">How to Cheaply Display Your Art</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/free-travel-with-postcard-fun">Free Travel With Postcard Fun</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/could-you-save-money-by-subscribing-to-an-addictive-game">Could you save money by subscribing to an addictive game?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/want-free-hbo-or-showtime-just-ask">Want Free HBO or Showtime? Just Ask.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/17-more-places-to-buy-sell-and-trade-books">17 More Places to Buy, Sell, and Trade Books</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Art and Leisure frugal decorating home decorating living space Thu, 21 Feb 2008 20:00:18 +0000 Sarah Winfrey 1827 at http://www.wisebread.com