How to make a Magnetic Frame to display artwork

(I was one of the bloggers selected by True Value to work on the DIY Squad. I have been compensated for my time commitment to the program as well as writing about my experience. I have also been compensated for the materials needed for my DIY project. However, my opinions are entirely my own and I have not been paid to publish positive comments.)

My daughter LOVES to draw and is very crafty. We have artwork all over our fridge and taped to the walls. I made her a magnetic frame for her to display all her artwork, photos, notes, and cards. It looks a lot classier on a magnetic frame instead of taped to the wall!

The frame is quite large. I wanted her to have enough space to display LOTS of artwork, not just a picture or two. Now she has plenty of room to expand her collection.


I couldn’t help but pull out some of my favorite old photos of her. Gah, she was just the most adorable little girl. Now she is 10! Time flies.

Here’s how to make your very own Magnetic Frame. I wanted something simple that I could make in a day. I started by purchasing a piece of magnetic sheet metal from True Value Hardware.

For the frame I used planks of MDF. These are 4″ wide that I had leftover from a previous project. Using the sheet metal as a guide, I cut the MDF with mitered edges, glued them together with wood glue, and then added some stapes on the seams on the back for added support. I let this dry overnight.

Once dry I lightly sanded the seams and all the edges.

I used some Painters Pyramids to support the frame while I sanded and painted it. These things are great and as you can see by how colorful they are, I use them frequently.

Once my frame was sanded, I added a coat of primer. MDF guzzles paint so it’s always a good idea to prime first. My favorite is Zinsser Bulls-Eye 1-2-3 Primer.

I let it sit for a few hours to completely dry before painting it. I used a leftover color – here is a similar one called Lemon Kiss at True Value. You can see in the picture below that I like to store extra touch-up paint in smaller glass jars. Much easier to use for small projects than a big metal paint can.

When the frame was dry I gave it a once-over with a can of satin clear top coat spray paint. Here is the exact type of top coat I like.

The sheet metal I purchased at True Value had a thin coating on it that I had to buff off with glass cleaner.

Once the frame was totally dry and the sheet metal was clean it was time to attach it to the frame. I did this using Liquid Nails.

I coated the inside perimeter of the frame with the Liquid Nails and then placed the sheet metal on top of the adhesive. I also set a few heavy paint cans on the corners of the frame to create a tight bond between the liquid nails and the frame.

From there it’s time to add the picture hangers. I love these picture hangers that you don’t need little tiny nails to attach. You simply hammer the picture hanger directly into the frame.

While I was making the frame Kinsey was busy making bottle cap magnets with a friend. She used leftover bottle caps, glued a magnet to the top of the bottle cap, flipped it over, decorated the inside of each cap, then gave it a good coating of mod podge dimensional magic. Aren’t they so adorable?!

From there it was just a matter of hanging it in her room and adding her creations!

I love all the little bottle cap magnets she made. It adds a nice finishing touch.

How do you display your kids artwork in your house? Artwork has a way of taking over the entire house. Have fun making your very own Magnetic Frame!

Check out all my other True Value projects here!


Ceramic Animal Heads as functional decor

While living in our previous house I fell in love with these quirky ceramic animal heads, spray painted them white, and hung them in the kitchen.

They are weird and fun, and I liked them because they were unique. After moving into our new house they sat there for over a year. I just couldn’t part with them, but there is not enough wall space in our new kitchen to display them anywhere. Unfortunately, they just didn’t work in the new house. Boo.

I mentioned to the kids in passing one day that I guess I was just going to have to put them in the garage sale pile because there is just no room for them. The kids apparently feel passionately about them and begged to let them put them in their rooms. (My son has a thing for pigs and really wanted the pig head in his room.)

This sparked the cutest idea ever – ceramic animal heads to hold sports medals and necklaces!

Travis got the pig and cow for all his medals. It solved two problems with one stone – we got to keep the adorable animal heads and he now finally has somewhere unique to store all those medals (and a random lanyard and room key card from his Carnival cruise he went on).

Kinsey inherited the chicken head, which now proudly displays her medals, leftover cruise key card, and long necklaces.

We added the chicken to her “jewelry wall” which also houses the earrings frame I made for her a few years ago.

I love that she added a pearl bracelet around the chicken’s neck. Between that and the blingy lanyard this chicken is pretty stylish.

I think I smile more now at these animal heads than I ever did when they were just hanging out in the kitchen. They are a fun decor accessory but also have a purpose, which I think is the best kind of decor!

*Also, don’t forget to quickly enter the giveaway for a free copy of Dave Ramsey’s The Total Money Makeover!


GIVEAWAY: Dave Ramsey’s The Total Money Makeover (5 winners)

*This giveaway is now closed. The winners are Comment #’s 55 – Tamar, 45 – Ivy, 6 – Kindra, 84 – Chelsea, and 32 – Jill. Congratulations!*

In preparation for the upcoming Legacy Journey LIVE! with Dave Ramsey and Rachel Cruze, we want to get everyone pumped up and ready to go by giving away FIVE copies of his best selling book, Total Money Makeover!

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Also, as a reminder, tickets are still on sale for Legacy Journey LIVE! in Seattle, Dayton, and Austin. If you want to go, don’t forget to use the coupon code below to save an additional $14.99.

    Legacy Journey Live! in Seattle, WA
    Thursday, October 16, 2014 at Benaroya Hall at 7:00 p.m. 
  • General Admission: $49 ($39 w/code)
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    Legacy Journey Live! in Dayton, OH
    Wednesday, October 29, 2014 at Schuster Performing Arts Center at 7:00 p.m. 
  • General Admission: $49 ($39 w/code)
  • Premiere Seating: $69 ($59 w/code)
  • Backstage Experience: $199 ($189 w/code)
    (VIP seating plus meet Dave, get picture & signed book, hors d’oeuvres)
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  • Get tickets HERE
    Legacy Journey Live! in Austin, TX
    Thursday, November 20, 2014 at Bass Concert Hall at 7:00 p.m. 
  • General Admission: $49 ($39 w/code)
  • Premiere Seating: $69 ($59 w/code)
  • Backstage Experience: $199 ($189 w/code)
    (VIP seating plus meet Dave, get picture & signed book, hors d’oeuvres)
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Discounts and coupon codes apply for EntreLeadership as well: Seattle, WA (Code: HEPWA); Dayton, OH (Code: HEPOH)

And now, the moment you’ve been waiting for… the GIVEAWAY!

  • PRIZE: One copy of Dave Ramsey’s The Total Money Makeover. Five winners.
  • TO ENTER: Leave a comment on this post.
  • GIVEAWAY CLOSES: Friday, October 10th at 10am CST. I will announce the winners the same day at the top of this post.
  • RESTRICTIONS:This giveaway is for residents of USA and Canada only.
  • USUAL STUFF:One entry per e-mail address permitted. The winners will be selected using and announced on Friday at the top of this post. Make sure you provide me with a legitimate email address, or I will select a new winner.

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