Home Improvement

10 Concepts for Recycling Old Frames

Who doesn’t have old photo frames at home? They’re forgotten in a drawer or box because the glass has broken or the frame itself is chipped or already discolored…sound familiar? In the spirit of recycling and reuse, take inspiration from these ideas and breathe new life into your old frames.

1. Can or Spray Paint

If the only problem with the old frame is that the frame is damaged or the color is faded, then the solution is very simple – just buy a can or two of spray paint and apply it to the frames. Choose a neutral color so you can re-display the frames in any corner of the house, or match the color with a specific decor. And who says paint, says applying leftover wallpaper, buttons, shells or the decoupage technique to renovate an old frame. This is called recycled decor!

2. Magnetic Strip

Take advantage of small frames to display, with an artistic touch, photos or postcards in the fridge – just apply a magnetic strip on the back of the frame and display anything you want in a more original way!

3. Beautiful Trays

An excellent idea to reuse old frames is to turn them into practical and beautiful trays: placed on a table, the most ornate frames are excellent for laying out objects, whether in a living room, bar, office or bedroom. Place a sheet of colored paper or a square of fabric under the glass to further embellish your new board.

4. Remove the Glass and Back Support

Creatively recycle old frames by removing the glass and back support, using only the frame to frame 3 or 4 individual hangers. These, in turn, can be used to hang small objects such as keys or jewelry.

5. Eco-Friendly Use

Another idea for an eco-friendly decoration using old frames is to remove the glass and the back support and just hang the frame structure. Displayed over a colorful wall or with wallpaper, you’ve just created an instant masterpiece.

6. Reuse the Old Moldings

Reuse old moldings – preferably those more elaborate and ornate models – to frame light switches or affix them to the ceiling to adorn ceiling lamps! A good example of original recycling.

7. Hanging Frame

Take only the frame structure and apply, inside, two wires from one end to the other, affixing them well. Use wires to hang earrings! The frame itself, which should be thick, can be displayed on a dresser or hung on the wall in the bathroom, for example.

8. Simple Magnetic or Chalk Board

Use an old frame to frame a simple magnetic, chalk or cork board, creating an inspiration, message or reminder board for the kitchen or office. Alternatively, affix the frame structure you want to reuse on a wall with slate or magnetic paint to achieve the same effect.

9. Placeholders 

It’s not always easy to find photos reduced to the smallest frames, so they can easily be forgotten in a drawer. Give them a new use, reusing them as placeholders for an upcoming dinner or to identify the different dishes you will serve at an upcoming buffet or luncheon.

10. Yellow Frame in Friends

Remember the girls’ apartment door in the “Friends” series? The friends had a yellow frame decorating the front door window! Why not? Simple ways to reuse, recycle and thus help the planet.