DIY Wood Canvas Frame

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Did y’all see the last episode of Fixer Upper? I’m going to tell you right now that when I found out Magnolia Flour was becoming a thing I had a few thoughts: a) How much more awesome could Chip and Joanna get? b) It’s just about the sweetest thing ever that he makes her dreams reality. c) I may or may not have also had the same dreams to own a store and a bakery, and this makes it seem a little more possible. d) I can’t wait to see how it’s designed!!! So I’ve been waiting patiently for the big reveal which happened this last Tuesday, and it did not disappoint, friends!

It’s the perfect mix of down home, elegant and whimsical {the checked turf, though… am I right?} from the classic black and whites to the herringbone flooring to the antique doors, subway tile and everything in between. Want to know what I noticed most about it, though? The signs! Don’t ask me why, but it’s true. First, there was the hanging iron sign telling you where to order and pay, then the stenciled sign on the exposed brick that said “bakery”. My favorite one, though? Aside from the menu board, of course, it’s the one that says, “Cupcakes are muffins that believed in miracles.” Because truth.

Seriously, I love it because it’s so simple but makes such a bold statement. I’ve noticed a trend towards simplicity in the past few years, and the frame surrounding that letter board sign is no exception. It’s four pieces of wood put together and lightly stained. No fuss. No frills. Just letting the simplicity speak for itself and look completely awesome.

We ordered some new prints at work a few weeks ago for the walls in our green room, and when they came in, the scripture reference at the bottom was only half on the canvas. The company we ordered them from is sending us new ones that are corrected but told us we could keep the misprints, so I brought a couple home to use in our decor with the idea of adding some simple frames to them and fixing the misprint. I had originally been thinking I’d need to DIY my own canvas scripture art which, while totally possible, would have taken a while, so what I thought was going to be a simple, yet time consuming project actually turned into just a quick and easy project! Win-win.

If you want to make your own sign, there are tons of methods out there, but my favorites are the transfer method we used in our wood gather sign and this tutorial from Bless’er House. You can frame wood or canvas, but since these were canvas at about 1″ thick, I’ll be showing you how to make this simple frame today for canvas. Y’all, this doesn’t require power tools. You can have your wood cut for you at Lowe’s or Home Depot and use a good old fashioned hammer and nails to attach the wood pieces, so don’t fret if you don’t have a miter saw or nail gun!


Here’s what you’ll need for this project:

  • 2 – 1×2 boards {I used pine} cut to the length of your canvas
  • 2 – 1×2 boards cut to the width of your canvas plus 1 1/2″ to account for overhang
  • Wood glue
  • Wood stain {I used Minwax Early American}
  • Cotton cloth or old tee shirt
  • Orbital sander {or sandpaper} for distressing
  • Nail gun or hammer and nails

Approximately time for project: 20 minutes, not including drying time. {Um, yes, please!}


I started with my canvas laid flat and measured the sides. This canvas was 24″ x 36″, so I cut two boards at 36″ and two at 25 1/2″ {24″ + 1 1/2″ for overhang} with my miter saw. Once the boards were cut, I gave them a light sanding to smooth any rough edges. Then I fitted them to the canvas to make sure the fit was right on.

I took a closeup to give you an idea of what the overlap looks like. I know the fit doesn’t look perfect, but it was. I just couldn’t hold it in place and take a picture {ha!}.

Once I made sure my boards were the right size, I stained them using a cloth. Just dip it in the stain, then wipe it on the wood. I let mine sit for a minute or so and then wiped it off using a different/clean rag. The stain takes about an hour to dry enough to be handled, so go enjoy some coffee or read our post from yesterday while you’re waiting! Once it’s dry, I sanded the edges with my orbital sander to distress the pieces a little and dull the tannin a bit.

The final step is assembling the frame. I put a squiggly line of wood glue on the back of each piece of wood, then nailed them onto the sides of the canvas starting with the top and bottom then attaching the sides. Once all four sides were on, I added one more nail through the overlap on all four sides to hold the frame together. I didn’t bother with setting the nails into the wood and covering them because I liked the rustic look they added to the frame. If you don’t want to see the nails, you can adjust the depth of your nail gun and fill in the hole with wood filler then stain or you could assemble the entire frame using pocket holes before adding the canvas. You have to be really close to these frames to even see the nails because of the stain I used, though, so I just didn’t worry with it.

The wood glue takes about 30 minutes to set, but once it’s dry, you can hang your new wall art up! I ended up framing both pieces and putting one over our mantle and one in the entry. Aside from the fact that I absolutely love the way they look and the rustic element the wood frames give to our home, the scriptures are a wonderful reminder each day of our calling to glorify God!

We have a five-foot “market” sign hanging over our kitchen sink that I bought at an antique store last year, and now that I’ve framed in these canvases, I feel like it could use a frame as well to help tie in the wood accents around the house and bring a little rustic character to the kitchen. A DIY-er’s work is never done… Thankfully, it’s quick, easy and inexpensive!

If y’all give this project a shot, we’d love to know about it! Thanks for stopping by the blog today, friends!


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    1. Hi, Kayla! Thanks for stopping by! The nails do not come through. I used 1″ nails (you could also use 1″ brads or 1 1/4″ nails/brads) that sink through my 3/4″ piece of wood and into the 3/4″ piece of wood the canvas is built from. The nails/brads are really just to hold the pieces in place while the glue dries, and putting nails through the short pieces into the longer ones at each corner holds the entire thing tightly in place as a safety measure. Hope this answers your question 🙂

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