Paint Your Numbers

How to Frame Paint by Numbers (Full Guide)

Framing a DIY Paint by Number artwork is an easy project you can do yourself. It involves three steps: assemble stretcher bars to form a rectangular frame, position the frame over the canvas, and stretch the canvas over each side of the frame and hold it in place.

What’s better than creating a beautiful painting with your own inexperienced hands? Framing it to display it on your wall proudly.

DIY Paint by Numbers is a painting strategy that helps even novices create art masterpieces. You simply paint each section of the color-coded canvas paper with the right colors to produce a beautiful painting.

When you create your own Paint by Number art piece, framing it elevates its presentation by leaps. Framing the painting enhances its appearance and makes it easy to hang on the wall. Framing also protects your painting for many years.

But how do you frame a Paint by Numbers art piece? This article will answer this question.

When it’s best to frame a Paint by Numbers, before or after painting it?

You can frame your Paint by Numbers custom photo or generic art piece before or after painting, as either solution has its own advantages.

Know that two options are available for framing a Paint by Numbers piece - traditional framing and stretching.

When it’s best to frame a Paint by Numbers

Framing means tucking your Paint by Numbers piece between the plain front glass and backboard of a traditional photo frame with protective wooden edging.

However, store-bought picture frames are made for thin photos and prints, not relatively thick Paint by Numbers canvas. So, it can be challenging to tuck a Print by Numbers canvas into the thin space between the narrow front glass and backboard. For this reason, most canvas paintings are not framed using traditional glass-covered photo frames.

Instead, Paint by Numbers pieces are more commonly framed via stretching. Stretching means folding a canvas tautly over a frame and fixing it onto the frame.

The Paint Your Numbers DIY canvas frames make framing your Paint by Number pieces easy, whether you frame before or after painting your canvas. 

Framing/ stretching a Paint by Numbers piece before painting

Many people prefer painting on a canvas that is already stretched. Stretching and framing a Paint by Numbers piece before you start painting has the following advantages:

  • It lets you paint your canvas vertically like a real artist. After stretching your canvas, you can put it on an easel and paint comfortably. 
  • You will have less surface to paint. As the canvas is folded over the frame, parts of it will be invisible to paint as they’ll be on the sides of the frame and behind it.
  • Less risk of damaging your painting. When framing, it is possible to scratch your painting (and damage it). You eliminate such risks by framing your art piece before painting. 

Framing/ stretching a Paint by Numbers piece after painting

It is absolutely fine to frame a Paint by Numbers piece after painting. However, to use this option, you should:

  • Allow the painting to dry completely before framing.
  • Take steps to avoid scratching/ damaging the painting.

Framing/ stretching your canvas after painting has the following advantages:

  • You can paint your piece horizontally. You can spread your canvas on any flat, clean surface and enjoy your paint with number craft. 
  • Choose a suitable frame. If you paint your masterpiece before framing, you’ll have different framing options to choose from. For example, you must paint before framing if you choose to frame your Paint by Number custom picture under glass.

How do you frame a Paint by Numbers canvas?

Before going into the steps to framing your Paint by Numbers piece, you must get some materials. These include the following:

  • A Paint by Number canvas
  • Four wooden stretcher bars
  • A set of thumbtacks or a staple gun
  • A T-square (not necessary if you have a good eye).

How do you frame a Paint by Numbers canvas

The stretching method is more commonly used for framing Paint by Numbers canvases. It is a simple method with three steps:

  • Assemble the stretcher bars into a rectangular frame.
  • Position the frame over the canvas.
  • Fold the canvas over the frame and pin it in place.
  • Assemble the wooden stretcher bars into a rectangular frame

    The first thing to do when framing a canvas by stretching is to assemble the wooden stretcher bars into a rectangular frame.

    When assembling the stretcher bars, ensure you position the four pieces correctly. Follow these steps to assemble the stretcher bars into a rectangular frame correctly:

    • Get your stretcher bars and lay them out.
    • Check that the ridge along the edge of the bars faces the same side on all four bars. This ridge holds your canvas away from the frame, preventing the canvas from showing through your painting.
    • With the two long bars opposite each other (and the two shorter ones also opposite each other), join the stretcher bars at their ends to form a rectangular frame.
    • Ensure the stretcher bars fit together very tightly to form your frame. You may have to use a rubber mallet to gently hit one or more of the stretcher bars into place. If the stretcher bars still prove difficult to fit together, gently sand a little wood away.
    • For professional work, also check that each angle is 90 degrees. Use a T-square for this and adjust your frame until all angles are correct.

    After creating your rectangular frame, you move to the next step.

    Position the frame over the canvas

    To position your stretcher bar frame over your canvas, follow these steps:

    • Lay the canvas numbered-side down on a flat surface. To protect the canvas, spread a tablecloth on the flat surface before putting the canvas face down.
    • Place the frame (ridged-side down) on the canvas. You may secure the canvas with pins, so it does not move. 
    • Ensure the frame is positioned such that the painting will be in the center of the frame.
    • Ensure you have about 1.5 inches of canvas material left on each side of the frame. This gives you enough material to fold over the frame for the end product.

    Stretch your canvas over the wooden frame and pin it in place

    The third step is the most technical and difficult. After ensuring you position your painting properly in relation to the frame, the next step is to pin the canvas in place.

    You can do this following these steps:

    • Starting from one of the longer sides of the frame (and canvas), stretch the canvas and fold it over the frame.
    • Using a thumbtack or staple gun, pin the folded canvas down on the stretcher bar frame. The best practice is to use one pin at the center. 
    • Then repeat the same procedure on the opposite side. Pull the canvas taut at the other long side of the frame, fold it over the bar, and pin it in place (using one pin at the center).
    • Then repeat the process for the two smaller sides of the frame. Each time, stretch the canvas taut and pin it down.
    • Check that the painting is positioned correctly.

    If there’s any issue with the positioning, you can easily remove one or more thumbtacks/ staple pins to position the painting properly.

    When you’re happy with everything, you can staple the folded canvas onto the frame. This is the most difficult part of the process (especially the corners).

    • Choose any of the four sides and work from the center, where you hold the canvas in place with one thumbtack/ pin.
    • Starting from the center of one side, pull the canvas taut, and staple it in place. Continue towards the corners but stop about two inches from the corner. 
    • Repeat the process for all four sides.
    • Then fold the corners in place. First, pinch a section of the canvas at the corner, pull it tight, place it over the frame at an angle of 45 degrees, and pin it in place. Then fold the remainder of the corner over the previously folded corner and hold it in place.
    • Repeat the process for all four corners.
    • If the canvas is attached to the frame, trim off any unsightly excess canvas (usually at the outer edges).
    • Touch the front of the canvas to check that it’s taut. You may add a few more thumbtacks to make it taut.

    These steps apply to framing a canvas before and after painting. However, when framing a Paint by Numbers piece after painting, you need extra care to avoid ruining your masterpiece. 

    Some considerations when applying these steps to frame your piece after painting include:

    • Ensure the Paint by Number piece is completely dry before you start framing.
    • When putting your painted canvas face down in the second step, take steps to protect the painting. Ensure the surface is smooth or spread a tablecloth on the surface before laying your canvas on it.
    • Be extra careful when stretching your canvas to fold it tautly over the frame. Paint coating on sections may crack/ break and ruin the painting. So, a painted canvas should be pulled with less force than an unpainted one.

    How to hang your frame paint by numbers 

    Hanging your framed Paint by Numbers art can be done in three simple steps. You first attach hanging hooks (D rings) to the frame, drill nails into a wall, and then hook the D rings over the nails.

    One of the main reasons for framing a beautiful Paint by Numbers art piece is to make it easy to hang on the wall. To turn your painting into beautiful wall decor, you need the following:

    • Hanging hooks (D ings)
    • Screws for attaching the hooks to the frame
    • Screwdriver
    • Hammer
    • Measuring tape
    • Pencil

    Know that most Paint by Number kits come with hanging hooks and screws. The steps to hang your framed paint by numbers are:

    Attach hanging hooks to the frame

    To do this, take these steps:

    • Lay the framed painting face down.
    • Screw two hanging hooks to the top horizontal bar of the frame
    • The D rings should be a few inches away from the corners. Also, ensure they are of equal distance from the corners. You may use a measuring tape for this. 
    • Attach the hooks onto the frame in such a way that they are not visible when the painting is hanging on the wall.

    Drill nails into a wall

    After equipping your framed painting with hanging hooks, follow these steps:

    • Find a suitable wall to hang your Paint by Numbers painting (for example, you may be unable to drill into brick or tile).
    • Once you’ve decided on a suitable wall, choose a good wall space for your painting, and make a mark on the place for each hook.
    • Hammer a nail into each mark you made on the wall.

    Hook the D rings over the nail

    To complete the hanging process, pick up your framed picture and hook each hanging hook over each nail on the wall.

    Takeaway - Create beautiful wall decor by framing your Paint by Number paintings

    After having so much fun creating a masterpiece using a Paint by Numbers kit, your piece deserves to be proudly showcased. Framing your Paint by Numbers piece enhances its appearance and enables you to showcase it by hanging it on the wall.

    As shown above, framing a DIY Paint by Number artwork is an easy 3-step project you can do yourself.

    Our DIY canvas frame is the perfect complement to your painting. It will help you showcase your special painting on any wall, adding the charm of art to your room. Importantly, they are classy, sturdy, and easy to put together.

    Turn your Paint by Number masterpiece into beautiful wall decor. Get the Paint Your Numbers canvas frame today!