Simple Wall Art
Cut Paper Illustrations and Framing
November - December 4, 2015
While I was working on the
facelift for the kitchen I came up with the idea of
creating some quick wall art for a specific wall.
I had no idea what to create but I wanted something
to cover a phone jack hole. Yes, I could have just
repaired the drywall but I will need to tear the
drywall out, whenever I get around to a complete
kitchen renovation. Easier at this point to
just cover it up.
While working on the backsplash I remembered I had
some leftover wallpaper from my
Master Bath shower
area renovation. I ended up
using the wallpaper on this
wall to soften the starkness of it. It also
covered up the phone jack hole.
wanted to put some artwork on
now on this section of wall. No more
"visible" phone jack hole.
While I was
waiting for the various stages of the countertop to
dry during my
countertop facelift, I came up with
the idea of the artwork.
What I had on-hand was a bunch of textured art paper
that I have used for cut paper collages in the past.
See Hula Bee to the right.
I wanted colors that would match my new countertops.
I did happen to have some black and bronze colored
Now to decide what to make.
Hula Bee cut paper collage (This image is
copyrighted by me)
I wanted a silhouette
or some simple images to cut out and place against a
contrasting background. After looking at
different themed clipart on the web, I came across
Chinese Floral Design.
the link no longer works. Just put the words
"Chinese Floral Design" in a search engine and you
should get similar results.)
I just liked these designs. They were simple
yet intricate enough to be a challenge
This project in itself, would be a great project for
kids to do. Giving a household some artwork
other than the crayon drawings stuck on the
refrigerator. Like taking profile head shots of
everyone in the family and make head silhouette art,
deciding on the bird / floral designs I wanted to
use, I needed to figure out what size I needed, to
cover the space on this wall. I was not
worried about standard frame sizes. I just
wanted a series of art pieces that fit my space.
I decided on three sizes for a total of five art
- One 8" x 28" for the
- Two 12" x 18"
- Two 12" x 12"
After laying out the art paper
all over the floor and furniture in my living room,
I came up with the combination of papers I liked.
After cutting the background paper to the the sizes
I wanted, I printed out the designs at the scale I
needed. If you are printing out a larger image
than your printer paper, tile your printouts.
Most graphic programs allow you to tile your
printout if it is larger than your paper. You
just need to tape together the tiles printouts to
get the larger image.
I then traced the image onto the paper using a
window for back light. For black paper, if you use pencil,
you can see your tracing.
After the images were traced, I cut them out and
glued them with regular white glue (Elmer's) onto
the background. I only needed enough glue to
make them stick. I removing any excess glue before it
It took two days to cut and glue all of the images
for the five art pieces.
Before I placed the wallpaper on the wall, I pinned the images up on the wall to see how they
would look. See photo below.
pinned on wall before wallpaper, to check on the layout
The images looked good where I
had placed them. However, I would need to
frame them. I also did not like one of the
images and changed it later.
Frames are easy enough to make, but I was too lazy
at this particular time to buy a bunch of moulding,
make all of the 45 degree miter cuts, and glue
So I looked online for an inexpensive framing
I was pleasantly surprised when I came across a website that
had frames at a really low price. Lower than
the cost of driving to the hardware store and the
time to cut and put everything together.....if you
believe that. So they get a good review on my
The key to finding frames that
are as inexpensive as I found them? Go
straight to the outlet or sale items on the
I planned to frame my artwork
myself. You can order matting, acrylic, and all the
other framing items you need when you order your
frame. This however will add to the cost.
The hanging kits I received, came with the frames I
ordered at no extra charge.
The frame option I came across was their model WX330
Unfinished Wood. The wood type I received was
poplar. At the time of my order on Nov 21,
2015, the frames were 80% off. These were also
custom made frames, to my specific dimensions.
The cost was:
- One 8" x 28" - $4.21
- Two 12" x 18" - $3.86 x 2 = $7.72
- Two 12" x 12" - $3.46 x 2 = $6.92
Grand total for five frames plus the $11.95 shipping
and handling, was $30.80. That comes out to
only $6.16 per custom sized frame. This is a
whole lot cheaper than what I could have bought
ready-made at a store OR the materials, time, and
labor of making it myself.
The only drawback, was waiting for the frames to
arrive. I ordered them on Nov 21 and received
them on Dec 3, 2015. I selected the cheaper ground
shipping. 12 days. For this great price,
heck, I had no problem waiting 12 days. They
promise to ship 3-7 days after the order is
received, which they did.
The frames were received assembled.
The shipping packaging was done very well!!! The
frames were strapped to the center of the box.
So if the box was dropped on a corner, it would not
touch the frames. The frames were also wrapped
in bubble wrap before being strapped in.
Basically, a truck would have to run over the box to
cause any significant damage.
frames as I received them. Assembled
frame I ordered automatically came with a
To accommodate the retainer clips they provide, there
is a groove routed into the back of the
For the "glass" on the frame, I had left over polycarbonate shelving liner that I
had used on my window at the
entrance which I cut to the size of the
artwork. The only
problem with the polycarbonate is that there will be
a glare when the lights hit it. I can live
Hanging kit for each frame ordered
|I used a large cardboard box, cut to size, to make
the backing of the artwork.
Since I ordered the frames unfinished, I painted
them myself. I had thought of painting them to match
countertop, since I had leftover
paint from that project. But decided not to,
in case I moved the artwork someplace else. I
did use the black countertop primer to prime the
wood. Then I spray painted the frames with oil
rubbed bronze colored spray paint.
Before painting them, there was a little bit of
sanding to do on a few rough spots. Took a few
Groove routed in back of frame for clips
Cardboard backing, artwork, polycarbonate with
protective layers still on both sides
the paint had dried on the frames, I was
ready to start framing.
Since everything was already cut, it was
just a matter of putting it together.
The clips that were provided with the frames
However, my cardboard was not thick enough
to fill the space so I put some scrap
cardboard I had on-hand under the clips to
level it out more. Not pretty, but no
one is going to see the back of the frames
once they are on the wall.
The D-rings screwed in easily on the frame
and then I attached the hanging wire.
After measuring carefully the hanging
locations, the artwork was hung on the wall.
Hanging hardware installed on artwork
Artwork installed on kitchen wall
The next thing I worked
on in the kitchen was the kitchen light fixture.