How to Make Your Own Canvas for Painting

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Stretching Canvas
Stretching Canvas (Image: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Strainer_bar_corner_051907.jpg)

This is a step by step process on how to make your own canvas for painting. It helps to have some knowledge on using a hand saw, because you will be creating your own frame before stretching your canvas.

Things You'll Need

  • 1 by 2-inch wood
  • Quarter-round trim pieces
  • Hand saw
  • Miter box
  • Canvas
  • Hand powered staple gun
  • Headless nails
  • Hammer
  • Canvas pliers
  • Scissors

Decide the size of the canvas you want to create. Place 1 by 2-inch wood in a miter box, and use a hand saw to cut the wood at a 45 degree angle. Cut 4 pieces.

After you cut the wood, assemble the pieces together and use a staple gun to place the parts together. Staple three times on the front and back of the corners, which will make the joints secure.

After the frame is completed, you will need to make an edge that runs along the outside of the frame in order to raise the canvas. You can use the hand saw to cut the quarter-rounds.

When laying the quarter-round trim down, the flat side should be resting down on your frame. The curved end should be going in towards the center.

After you have placed your quarter-rounds, nail them in place with headless nails. Nail about every four inches.

After you have assembled your frame, measure your canvas to make sure it overlaps the frame. Cut the desired amount.

Place the canvas over the frame and place one staple in the center of one side of the frame. Turn your frame around, and pull the canvas as taut as you can, and place the second staple in the center of your frame. Rotate the canvas to a 90 degree angle, and staple. Do the same for the opposite end.

After you have placed four staples, repeat the process of pulling and stapling around your canvas.

After you get to the end corners, pull tight and fold the flap. Staple the flap to the frame.

After you have completed the above processes, you will have a completed frame.

Tips & Warnings

  • When you buy headless nails, buy them no longer than the width of your quarter-rounds and 1 by 2-inch wood combined. If you've assembled your canvas just right, it will sound like a drum when you tap your fingers against it.
  • Pay attention to your fingers when sawing your frames.

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