Wednesday, March 9, 2016

DIY Photo Board

I've been on the hunt for a photo board for baby girl's room. Max has one in his room, and I love showcasing photos of him with the important people in his life. It's an easily-swapped display for his room, and he loves naming all the special people in the photos. Finding Max's board was easy--it was mine in college and fit his color scheme perfectly; unfortunately, I haven't had much luck in finding the exact style I'm looking for to place in his sister's room. I've searched in stores and online and nothing is striking my fancy.

Max's board in his room. I bought this at Target years ago. Or maybe Walmart.

Naturally, I Googled how to DIY your own photo board, and after exploring a few different options, I settled on the procedure outlined below. This is super easy to whip up (I created mine during the first half of naptime on Monday), and it's so easy to customize. Plus, you likely have a good portion of the materials already at home!

DIY Photo Board


  • Art canvas with wooden frame in the size of your choice (I used 18x24 inch)
  • Fabric of your choice. You want to have at least 6 inches of overlap around the edges of your canvas. I had this burlap lying around, so I used that.
  • Quilt batting (again, allow for at least 6 inches of overlap around the canvas edge)
  • Coordinating ribbon (I used 5/8 inch non-stretchy ribbon on a 10 yard spool and had plenty leftover)
  • 5 decorative buttons
  • A staple gun
  • Scissors
  • Needle and thread (depending on the type of button you choose, you may want to have coordinating thread color to match your fabric)
  1. Iron your fabric, if needed, then lie it right side down on your crafting surface. Then layer your quilt batting over it (you can use two layers of batting if you'd like to create a more cushion-y look, but I found that just one layer was fine). Last, lie your canvas, front side down, on top of your fabric and batting. 
  2. Pulling the fabric/batting tightly around the back edge of the canvas, staple all around the edges of the canvas. The more staples, the better! I've found it's best to start in the middle and work your way to the edges.

  3. The corners can be tricky. I just folded and stapled, folded and stapled some more, until the corners looked like the photo below. Check the front of the canvas to make sure it all looks nice. 
  4. Trim off the excess fabric and batting on the back once everything is stapled.
  5. Beginning in one corner--still on the back--of the canvas, staple the end of your ribbon a couple of times, then string it around the front of the canvas, diagonally across the front, and staple again on the back side of the opposite corner (for example, begin on the top left and end on the bottom right). Repeat with the other corners. You're basically making a big X on the canvas.
  6. Continue stapling your ribbon on the back of the canvas and crossing the ribbon over the front to create the pattern below. You don't need to be exact; I eyeballed it, but you could measure the halfway points of each side if you want to. 

  7. Now comes the most tedious part: sewing the buttons. The buttons will go where the ribbons overlap. Sew the button tightly into the fabric/batting/canvas. The middle button will be tricky due to the cross bar in the back, but it's manageable. 
  8. Choose a length of ribbon to staple in the top corners of your board (on the back!), beginning in one corner and ending in the other, for hanging purposes.

Now all that's left is choosing your favorite photos to display in your pretty photo board! I love using these in kids' rooms because there's no need for magnets or thumbtacks--it's baby-proofed already!

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