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Yo Mama’s! Happy Mother’s Day! Here’s a surprise I whipped up for my buddy Rachel.

If you haven’t seen the massive blank walls in my great room, they’re very easy to imagine: 20ft walls with NOTHING on them. I wanted to do a 6 or 8 modern photo frame series featuring varying scales and poses. So last month Maddy and I had a little photo-shoot!

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After deciding to have the images be 5″x7″, I jumped into Photoshop to touch-up (let’s remove the dog hair from her mouth…), re-size and colorize. You can get two 5″x7″s on one 8″x10″. Math told me so.

I narrowed the 20-some images down to 6, trying to vary the poses and scale (as I mentioned before).

I grabbed my self-healing OFLA (magic?) mat, metal ruler and X-acto knife and then got to cutting.

Next I messed around with the order of the images to try and take advantage of the differences in scale, position and focus.

I was going to make the frames myself, but we got a flat tire in the Babies ‘R Us parking lot yesterday. So, I popped into Walmart after my workout with my fingers crossed(the non-flaccid fingers, thank you.) While they were out of the white 5″x7″ frames, they had six white 8″x10″ with a matted 5″x7″ opening. It’s not what I had envisioned, but it’ll work!

Throw in tulips (Rachel’s favorite), Dirty Dancing on Blu-Ray, a card with love-squirrels on it and I’ve got a nice little Mother’s Day surprise!

Later today I’m going to put the frames up in the great room, check back later!

Since there weren’t any studs where I needed them to be, I used basic wall anchors to secure the frames to the wall. Pre-drill, lightly tap in the achors with a hammer and use a screw driver to twist in the screw and activate the anchor. ANCHOR ACTIVATED!

I mostly eyed them up, which never really does me wrong…until it does. I used a 4ft level in some spots to double check my anchor spots were correct.

I’ve been holding onto this mantle shelf that the previous homeowners left us. I’ve got the perfect spot…

If you look below the frames, you’ll see the pencil marks where I want the top of the mantle to be. I used the 4″ level to get it…level.

Using one of those cheap stud-finders, I secured the brackets to the wall and slide the mantle on. There’s a little ding on the front of the shelf from when I didn’t have it secured (but thought I did) and the piece came crashing to the floor. “What was that Rick?” “…Oh, nothing…” WOOPS!

And there it is! Now to find some knick-knacks for the shelf…


One stay at home dad (to be) conquers DIY and Diapers

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