Drywall Wall Frames

Jennifer —  February 13, 2012

I think I have a small obsession with drywall.  Random,  I know, but it has been a big element in my home decor.  That is so random to read aloud.  It is the main element in this chalkboard frame wall, in this office bulletin board, and now my living room gallery.

After my “Aha” moment at Lowes I went home and sketched out what I would need.  Here are the materials needed:

Material List:

  • Piece of Clearance Drywall
  • cut pieces of plywood ( “el cheapo” kind because it's just the backing)
  • Liquid Nails
  • Staple Gun (I didn't even use my pneumatic.  I just used my hand-held)
  • Staples
  • Fabric
  • Picture hanging kit
  • small silver nails (with a small flat round head)
  • Ruler
  • Box Knife

I decided that I wanted my drywall mats to be double the size of an 8.5 X 11 paper.  (17 X 22)  I knew that I would be designing and printing off my own art on computer sized card stock paper.  I shared my initial plan the other day and I had already figured out this pattern:

I had to rearrange the cut out paper a little by basically spreading out the framed pictures a little, to accommodate three 17 X 22 mats.  I went to Lowes and Home Depot to collect my supplies.  Home Depot has a better scrap wood section so I went there first.  They have this entire cart of scraps from wood people cut and didn't want.  I found two large pieces of plywood for $1.oo a pop.  I had them cut them into 17 X 22 sized pieces.

I then headed to Lowes where I knew the clearance drywall existed:

The sign says $2.00 but when you get to the register its only $1.00.  I am not sure why, but hey, I am not complaining.  This drywall comes from damaged pieces when they are unloading their large quantities into their store.  I grabbed two large pieces for $1.00 a pop.  (are you counting?  So far I have spent $4.00.)  While at Lowes I picked up a box of picture hangers.  I decided to get the kind you have to nail the little nails in.   I needed 18.  The ones I got (not found online) there were 6 in the box so at $1.65 a pop I spent about $5.00 for that (My total is now up to $9.00) 

When the hubs and I flipped house we bought contractor packs of everything.  We have had enough liquid nails to last almost a year.  The stash is dwindling but I had enough for this project.  I also had staples and a staple gun.  I was able to find some silver flat-headed nails in our stash of random out in the garage.  All I had left was the fabric.

A few days later I went on a fun errand day with my friend Ashley. Of course, on my list of errands was to stop by a random quilt store that we have in my hometown.  It does not compare to my favorite fabric store 45 minutes away but it has a pretty good selection of solids.  I wanted my printables to stand out so I was looking for light grey solid upholstery fabric.  The good news…they had two options.  The great news was that one was in the clearance room.  SCORE!  I bought two yards at $3.50 a yard.  ( The total now is at $16.00)  I was ready to start!

I had to modify my original pattern when I got home.  I will share why Wednesday.  I want to skip that stuff to tell you how I made these.

Here is how:

1.)  I went home and cut the drywall the same size as the plywood (17 X 22)

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If you have a good 90 ruler like this one it makes life so easy.  Mine has a little edge that helps me keep in straight.  I just use it to draw the line and then run the box knife to score the line a few times.  Move the scored line to the edge of your surface (sawhorse in my case) and fold the drywall together like a book.  If it's a large piece, pop it with the palm of your hand.  No worries, it will break on the scored line.  Caution:  This can be messy.  Do this in the garage.  Also, be careful with the box cutter.

2.)  Clean up the edges of the drywall if you need to. 

I shaved  the jagged edge by lightly sanding the sides, and used masking tape to round it off on a few of them.  The more I cut, the better I got and had great edges after the second one.  I was using a heavy weight fabric so the masking tape does not show.  I wouldn't suggest using a light-colored cotton fabric anyway just to make sure the ugly drywall doesn't show through.

3.)  I used liquid nails to glue the drywall and plywood together

Here is what it looks like glued together:

Clamp it and let it dry.  I would trust Liquid nails to hold me over a cliff (not really but its pretty sturdy).  If you still have doubts you can also rest assured that the fabric will also help hold the drywall and plywood together.

4.)  I stapled the fabric on the adhered drywall/plywood piece.

The front of the mat is the drywall piece (so you can “push-pin” a printable onto the front).

6.)  I nailed in the picture hangers

I am anal so I measured one inch in and down on both sides of each mat.  This was a little particular but it sure helped in measuring and hanging them perfectly aligned on the wall.

Here is the finished product:

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Stay tuned I am going to share how I modified my pattern, how I framed the pictures in the frames, and I will show you what I chose to put on the mats.  There is a significance behind each one.  I will tell you that this project cost me about $66 dollars.  It's about $6 over what I budgeted originally (before any purchase) but it would have been $90 to get more Ikea frames (plus pictures) and about a total $150-200 if I had to add the cost of 9 large poster frames!

Thanks for reading,

Jennifer

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