by Staff Writer
Everybody puts pictures in picture frames, and for good reason. Frames draw attention to pictures as something of importance, but it doesn't have to end there. Whether you have antique wood frames or sleek metal photo frames, with a little creativity, you can use picture frames to create distinctive style in your home.
A picture: Using a frame to hold a picture isn't a new concept, but try doing it in a different way. Enlarge a picture of a beautiful landscape and cut it into four rectangles. Put each rectangle in its own frame and hang them with a few inches between each.
Wine corks or sea shells: Glue old wine corks, or sea shells from a vacation or a craft store, onto cardboard. Completely cover the surface so none of the cardboard backing shows through; then frame it after removing the glass from the frame. It is best to lay out your design before gluing to see how it looks and fits together.
Memories: Put ticket stubs from your favorite concert or the playbill from the time you saw a Broadway play in the picture frame. You can even collage several items from one or many vacations.
Material: You can fill your frames with any interestingly patterned material. If you find some wallpaper you like but don't want to wallpaper a whole room, just frame a rectangle of it. The same can be done with some leftover fabric. You could also frame some mosaic tiles meant for a kitchen backsplash.
Nothing: Consider putting nothing in your picture frames. Remove any backing or matting and lean the empty frames against the back of a bookshelf or hang them on the wall. You might be surprised at how good it looks. You can also paint a rectangle of color on the wall and frame that to give some easy color to a room without the trouble of painting the entire wall.
One of the great qualities of frames is that it is so easy to change their contents. So be brave. You can always change out what is inside.