New This Month


Classic Photographs with Trim

These sepia landscapes are framed by a decorative trim that sticks to surfaces when gently heated. The images and trim are arranged on freestanding panels that were painted to match the walls and then mounted when the artwork was complete.

Photography: James Merrell

Source: Martha Stewart Living, January 2008


  • Large-format ink-jet printer

  • Scissors

  • Ruler and pencil

  • Plastic putty knife

  • Paste-style glue

  • Primer

  • Oil-based paint

  • Spatter screen

  • Pot for boiling water

  • Offset metal spatula

  • Wood glue

  • Fine craft brush


  1. Before cutting and framing the photos, it's necessary to create a background panel for each pair. The panels can then be mounted on a wall with nails. To prepare each panel, fit a wooden board (ours were 20 by 45 inches) with molding. Prime and paint the pieces; let them dry before proceeding with these instructions.

  2. On a computer, convert the photographs to sepia, print them in a large oval format (ours were 12 by 16 inches), and cut them out. (If your printer cannot accommodate a large format, have pictures printed and cut to size by a professional develop-er or a print or photocopy store.)

  3. With the ruler and pencil, carefully mark the wall panels to indicate the placement of each oval picture.

  4. Using the putty knife, apply paste-style glue (such as Yes glue) to the back of one photo. Carefully affix the image to the panel, pressing to smooth out wrinkles. Repeat with remaining photos. Let dry (about 3 hours).

  5. Prime and paint the ornament strips. (We used oil-based paint, as it holds up well when the ornaments are heated in the next step.) Let dry.

  6. Place a spatter screen over a pot of boiling water. Working with one ornament strip at a time, place strip on the screen and steam for several seconds, until slightly sticky and soft. Using the offset metal spatula, gently lift the ornament.

  7. Working quickly but carefully, apply strips to border of picture, overlapping image slightly. Curve or cut the trim as you work, and hold it in place as it cools. Repeat the process with remaining ornament strips.

  8. Using wood glue, reattach any bits that have broken off the ornament strips during application. Using the fine brush, touch up any cracks with paint if necessary, and let dry. Repeat process for each photograph.

Reviews Add a comment