DIY Finger Paint Picture Frames: Craft Activity for Kids

By Joan
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These DIY picture frames are inexpensive to make and can give your kids a fun and crafty way to make a personalized gift for others in the family. 

The frames just made out of just cardboard and paper, and can easily be cut to suit any sized print you want. 

Below you will find full written instructions so you can make your own frames at home. Plus a video demonstration of the project. 

Prepare Your Cardboard Materials

The type of cardboard you use does not matter that much as the frame will be covered in paper prior to being decorated. 

We have given the kids free rein to finger paint the frames. But you could improvise any way you like here and use paintbrushes, draw, or stick things on the frames to suit what your child likes to do. 

DIY Finger Paint Picture Frame Materials

Finger Paint Frames Video Demo

Putting together the structure of the frames can be a little complicated in the written steps so we encourage you to watch the video below prior to starting your craft project. 

You will see the project come together in approximately two minutes and this will make it much easier to understand and complete. 


How to Make Finger Paint Picture Frames

How to Make DIY Finger Paint Picture Frames

This DIY picture frame project is a great gift idea for family members. You can create the cardboard frames in just a few minutes, and then provide your kids with a cardboard surface to decorate with some colorful finger painting. Or customize however they see fit.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Active Time 10 minutes
Additional Time 10 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Difficulty Easy


Stage 1: Cut and assemble the cardboard picture frame pieces

  1. Step 1- Cut two rectangular pieces of cardboard 8" long, and 6" in width. Feel free to go larger if you want a bigger picture frame. Step 1
  2. Step 2 - Take one of your cardboard pieces and make a margin of about 2" on the inside of the edge of the cardboard and mark with a pencil and ruler.
  3. Step 3 - We will now cut out the center of the cardboard using a box cutter. Place the cardboard on a cutting board, or harder surface, and cut around the line marked in pencil using a box cutter to remove the inner piece of cardboard. Step 3
  4. Step 4 - Now take that inner piece of cardboard that has been removed and cut it into lengths of cardboard the same width as your picture frame. This will be used as an extra layer of cardboard to thicken up the frame. Step 4
  5. Step 5 - Glue these extra cuts of cardboard in place. Step 5
  6. Step 6 - Place the frame on a piece of bond paper that is large enough at each side to be bent back over the inner part of the frame. Apply glue to the frame and secure in place. Make sure to fold the corners like you are wrapping a present to keep the paper neat. Step 6
  7. Step 7 - Once securely in place, get your box cutter and cut an X from corner to corner of the inside of the frame. Then fold this back and glue in place in a similar way to step 6. Step 7
  8. Step 8 - Cut the excess paper using scissors. Step 8
  9. Step 9 - Now get your second piece of cardboard from Step 1 and glue to the back of the frame on only three sides - make sure one edge of the frame has no glue applied. This cardboard piece should already be a good fit and provides a back cover of the frame.
  10. Step 10 - The last step is to cut a cardboard stand for your frame. Cut a 3" x 6" length of cardboard and fold one end back on itself with two folds to create a triangle shape. Step 10
  11. Step 11 - Glue this second fold down to create that face to be glued to the frame, with the remainder of the stand angling away. Step 11
  12. Step 12 - Glue your stand to the center of the back of the picture frame. Step 12

Stage 2: Finger paint the picture frame to design

  1. Step 13 - Now it is time to let the kids get creative. Have your paints ready and we can start finger painting.
  2. Step 14 - Set aside to dry for 10 minutes. Step 14
  3. Step 15 - You can now add your pictures to your homemade picture frames. Complete Finger Paint Frames

Why Make Homemade Craft Picture Frames

Imagine the look on the grandparent’s faces when they receive a photo of their grandchildren inside a frame that they have decorated themselves? 

With the materials being so cheap this craft idea can be a great one for the holidays as it is a gift that everyone will love. 

Final Word

It can take a bit of practice to get the structure looking strong and correct. So perhaps have a play around with some cardboard before you have eager young children around. 

Once you master the first stage though you can make a few of these really quickly. The kids will be both impressed with your skills, and enthusiastic about making their own contribution.

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Joan is our creative specialist who puts together our craft projects and video tutorials to help parents engage their children in productive activities. Joan also runs an online arts & crafts store called Papel de Arte.

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