Do you have a lot of old picture frames lying around? You might have more frames than you have pictures, but that doesn’t mean your old picture frames are destined to collect dust in the attic for the rest of their days.

If you’re looking for practical and pretty ways to put your old picture frames to use around the house, look no further. You can use your old picture frames to create racks for storing and displaying sunglasses, or jewelry; you can take several frames and build a mini greenhouse for your plants; you can even turn a frame into a charging station. Here are some ideas to help you make the most of your old picture frames.

Create a Stylish Jewelry Rack

It’s not hard to convert a picture frame into a pretty jewelry rack. All you have to do is remove the glass and backing and replace them with some kind of mesh so you can hang earrings. You can buy attractive wire mesh in small sizes from craft stores. Paint the mesh and frame to match, or create a contrasting look. Add a row of small hooks to the bottom of the frame so you have somewhere to hang your necklaces. Small frames can work great for this project, but you can also use large poster frames if you have a lot of jewelry to display.

Fashion a Place to Hang Your Sunglasses

If you’re a “sunglasses” person, you probably have several pairs of sunglasses. Simply remove the glass and backing and cut lengths of ribbon to stretch across the back of the frame. Hold them in place with thumbtacks or use a staple gun to attach them to the back of the frame. Voila, you have a pretty new rack for your sunglasses.

Build a Mini Greenhouse

Whether you need to protect your favorite houseplants from your favorite housecat or need a place to start seeds, you might find that old picture frames make great ready-made panels for constructing small greenhouses. Remove the glass and backing from the frames and paint them all a single matte color to give the greenhouse a finished look. Then hot glue the frames together in the shape of a house. Add hinges and a small latch to create a door on one end.

Construct a Shadow Box

It’s actually pretty easy to turn an old picture frame into a beautiful shadow box for bathroom storage or knick knack display. It’s easiest if you use a shadow box of the same dimensions as your picture frame. Simply glue the picture frame to the front of the shadow box to jazz it up. Paint them both the same color.

Make a Dry Erase Board

Making a dry erase board is probably the simplest way to upcycle an old picture frame. You don’t even need to do anything to the picture frame. Just print out a nice backdrop or put a piece of pretty fabric in the frame under the glass. Then you can use a dry erase marker to write on the glass.

Corral Your Electronics

Doesn’t it seem like everyone in the house wants to charge their phones and tablets at the same outlet? Use an old picture frame to create a charging station that will do away with the nest of tangled wires at your family’s favorite outlet. Use an 8”x10” frame with a sturdy stand and a solid piece of chip board for backing. Remove the glass from the frame, but keep the chip board backing. Grab a 8”x10” piece of cardboard and some lengths of wood trim – quarter round provides enough of a ledge to hold your phones and tablets, but you can use whatever spare trim you have lying around.

Glue the piece of cardboard to the front of the backing, so that it shows through the frame. Cut down two lengths of wood trim so that they fit inside the frame horizontally. Paint both the cardboard front the backing and the trim the same color. Then glue the pieces of trim across the front of the cardboard backing. Once everything is dry, you’re ready to charge your electronics – just tuck the snarl of cords out of sight behind the picture frame.

You don’t have to throw that box of old picture frames away. You can breathe new life into old frames and put them back on display in your home. All you need is a little creativity and some elbow grease!

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