How to Turn a Wagon Wheel into a Picture Frame

Posted on: 10 July 2015


If you want to give your home a unique look without breaking your bank, you need to create some of the decorations on your own. There are many ways to give your home a country feel without spending an arm and a leg. The following guide walks you through the process of turning a wooden wagon wheel into a custom picture frame you can use to display your favorite family pictures in a unique way.

1. Sand Down the Wheel Use 80-grit sandpaper to carefully sand down every inch of the wheel. You need to create as smooth of a surface as you can so that it has a finished and professional look when you are done.

2. Stain the wheel Take a clean, dry rag and dip it into a dark colored stain. Lightly rub the stain over a section of the wheel and then use another rag to wipe away the stain. This will give the wheel an aged appearance. Repeat the process for the rest of the wheel. Allow the stain to set for a few hours before continuing.

3. Trace the Wheel Lay the wheel flat on a piece of plywood. Use a pencil to trace around the exterior of the wheel to have a guide for how large the backer needs to be and then trace around the spokes of the wheel so you can know where the pictures need to be placed between the spokes.

4. Create Your Backer Use a circle-cutting jig to cut around the edge of the backer where you traced the wheel. Be sure that you sand down the edge of the backer when you are done cutting it to ensure that it is smooth.

5. Attach Picture Hanging Brackets On one side of the backer, use a screwdriver to attach a few picture hanging brackets. You need to be sure that the brackets are evenly spaced to ensure that the wheel does not hang improperly when you are finished. Use a measuring tape to measure an equal distance between the two brackets.

6. Mount and Matt the Photos Carefully place the pictures between the spokes you traced onto the backer. Use a piece of clear tape at the top of each picture and at the bottom of each picture to hold the pictures in place. Cut matting paper to fill the spaces in between the spokes that the pictures do not cover. Be sure that any tape you use to hold the matting in place will not be visible when you attach the wheel.

7. Attach the Wheel Place a small strip of wood glue around the edge of the backer with the photos facing toward the ceiling. Line up the wheel so that the spokes that you traced are lined up with the actual spokes of the wheel. Press firmly and allow the glue to set for an hour or two. Next, flip the entire creation upside down and use a staple gun to staple through the backer and into the wheel to ensure that the two pieces are properly secured together.

Once you have attached the wheel to the backer, you can hang it on the wall. The wheel will be rather large, so you may want to hang it over your mantle so it can serve as the focal point for the room.