Magnetic Picture Hanger Tutorial

Poster hanging beside the pantry door.

My hipster cow poster hanging beside the pantry door.

Magnets hold the print in the moulding sandwich.

Magnets hold the print in the moulding sandwich.

I love the look of old educational wall hangings with the wooden dowels across the top and bottom, and I’ve been trying to find a cheap way to display my work around the house.  Here’s my tutorial on how I recreated that vintage look.

Supplies:

Use a speed square and blade to mark your cuts.

Use a speed square and blade to mark your cuts.

Tools:

Cut four pieces of moulding slightly wider than the poster/print you’d like to hang.  Two for the top, and two for the bottom.  The print will be sandwiched between them and secured with the magnets.  My overhang was a 1/4″ on either side.  I used a speed square and Olfa blade to mark my measurements.  A blade is much more accurate than a pencil and it severs the wood fibers to cut down on splintering.

What?  I can't tell.

What? I can’t tell.

Eww, not square!

Eww, not square!

If you find that with all your care your cuts aren’t perfectly square, just match the ends of the same cut together and no one will be able to tell.

Then stain your wood.  I used Jacobean, which is very dark, and there was no need to let it sit.  I just wiped it on, then wiped it off again.

Mark where the magnets will go.  I came in 2″ on either end.  I only marked one side of each pair of mouldings and I’ll tell you why later.  Drill part of the way through the wood.

A drill stop will prevent you from drilling all the way through the wood.

A drill stop will prevent you from drilling all the way through the wood.

I have a set of drill stops that came with my doweling kit, but you can buy them separately, too.  This is important so you don’t drill all the way through.  If you don’t have a drill stop and don’t want to buy one, just be very careful.  You will be very sad if you drill through to the other side.  You may need a tissue.

Dowel center transfer plug in action.

Dowel center transfer plug in action.

Also with my doweling kit came this handy little tool for marking the place of holes that need to be matched precisely.  It’s called a dowel center transfer plug.  You just stick it in the hole you drilled and press the pointy end into the other piece of wood.  Make sure the edges are all square, flush, and plumb before you do that.  Now you know exactly where to drill on the other side.  Alternatively, you could just measure really carefully.

Cut your string or twine long enough so you get a pleasing isosceles triangle when you place the ends in your drilled holes.  Tie knots in both ends.

The final rigging

The final rigging

Fill the drilled holes with glue and put the ends of the string in, followed by your magnets.  BE SO CAREFUL WITH THESE MAGNETS.  If you have children or pets and they swallow two of these, the attraction is so powerful that they will tear through your child’s/pet’s insides.  Let’s not have that, shall we?  I keep these hidden well out of reach.  Also, when you place the magnets, remember there’s a positive and negative side and opposites attract.  You need the poles facing the same direction in the sandwich.  After placing the magnets in the holes, I glued a little scrap of paper over them, then I put the sides of the hangers together with plastic wrap in between to dry overnight.  I did that because I wanted to make sure that as the glue dried, the magnets were flush with the surface of the wood.

Et voila!  If you are interested in purchasing either my hipster cow or Psych pancakes poster, check out my Etsy shop.

Completed hanger holding up my Psych inspired poster of pancakes.

Completed hanger holding up my Psych inspired poster of pancakes.

Advertisements

About sappling

When God created the world, he did it in six days and rested on the seventh. I always wished there was just one more day in the week, an eighth day just for me to pursue the thoughts in my head and translate them to the physical world. There are only seven days, however, so I steal my creative moments in between being a mom and my work binding books and making boxes for clients all over New York City. I love working with my hands, learning new things, and I'm here to share those lessons with you. There are only seven days in a week. Why not eight? Guess I'll ask when I get there.
This entry was posted in Arts and Crafts and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Magnetic Picture Hanger Tutorial

  1. Amy says:

    Nice tutorial! Thansk 🙂

  2. Amy says:

    *Thanks

    • sappling says:

      Thanks Amy! I’m always looking for cheaper ways than picture frames to display my art. On Jul 19, 2014 11:21 AM, “Why Not Eight” wrote:

      >

  3. Junquemail Contessa (Casey Nelson) says:

    Great tutorial…thank you so much for sharing! 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s