Giant Picture for cheap, take 2

Giant Picture, for cheap, take 2.  Using my previous tutorial (sort of).  Eek!!  I am in love with this- -

 I’m sure you recall that I’ve done a tutorial on a DIY giant cheap picture – it’s of my girls and still hangs in their room – looks just as good today as the day I posted about it:

I love that picture and the project – the problem is that it is upstairs and in a bedroom, so most people who come into my home don’t see it and it’s fabulousness (unless I drag them up there to show it off – which I do occasionally).

So when I redid my living/dining room, I knew I wanted to do a family picture, Giant Picture style.  And it’s awesome.

First off, take a picture.  Trevor blogged his side of this story – – I told the kids to fake laugh.  Some were more exuberant than others.  I had a friend climb on a shakey ladder and take a picture.  I think it worked.

Then, I printed it as an “engineer’s print”.  See the previous tutorial for that info.  I have printed one at Office Max and one at Office Depot – both places did it for me.  This one is a little smaller than the one of my girls – it’s 3ftx4ft and this one was 3 1/2 ft by something – – I didn’t want it to be too big for the space.  Anyways, it cost me $6 to print.  The print is on flimsy paper but it doesn’t matter to me – it’s up high.  And say it fades in 5 years – I’ll want a new picture by then anyways.

The one of my girls I stuck onto a cheap piece of styrofoam.  Since this was going in my dining room, I wanted to step it up a little, so I went with a sturdy piece of plywood – it was $40, but I used a little less than 1/2, so let’s say the board cost me $20.

The board was bigger than the picture to create that border.  I painted it.  I also had Trevor router the edge and painted inside the groove with this awesome silver paint to fancy it up a little:

I was lazy and only painted the edge, which you can see in this next picture.  Then we spray-glued one side, pressed it down, then worked on the other side:

At this point it looked pretty good, but a little plain:

So I painted some trim pieces then just used wood glue to attach them right to the board, covering the edge of the picture.  I forgot to take a picture of that step – sorry.  But here’s an upclose picture of the trim around the edge of the picture – I really like the added touch it gives:

For those of you wondering about quality of the print, it’s not pixely at all – – here’s an upclose photo of the photo (untouched by photo editing) -

And just to give you a reference point on how big this Giant Picture is, here’s my almost-4-year-old standing next to it:

Then Trevor’s favorite part – – hanging up a heavy picture.  Then stand back and admire it.

Have you made a Giant Picture yet??  Seems like everyone is doing it – and I say go for it!  It has already gotten lots of compliments in my home – it’s a conversation piece and it really sets the mood of “fun” right when you come in.  Anyways, give it a try!  (remember, the old tutorial is at Cheap Giant Photo Picture Print and in addition to the tutorial, there are lots of helpful tips in the comments section)

Thanks for checking out this post from – – click on over to read it in its entirety – you’ll love it!

Thanks for Reading


  1. says

    I think it is fantastic! This gives me an idea! (insert evil laugh here). Oh and that color is the perfect pop in that room and definitely ties in your cool chandy. Im still searching for one to paint, Ill find one someday!

  2. says

    What a great tutorial! I really must look into this. I haven’t hung any pictures in my home yet since moving in over a year ago. I’ve been meaning to hang some photos and get some canvases done but this is great-er! I love the extra trim you put over the edges of the print. It really looks like a proper frame and looks fab :)

  3. says

    Mandy, how did you end up choosing that color for the “frame” of the photo as well as your dining room chandelier? It’s unusual … we’re looking to redo our 1926 dining room (right now it’s entirely a not-unpleasant shade of yellow — both ceilings and walls). I love what you’ve done but I’m unsure about choosing such a bright color — and wonder how you got to that decision point. Thanks!

    • says

      Hey Beth – – I love turquoise and bright colors, so I knew I wanted to incorporate something without being too overwhelming and painting a whole wall that color. The smaller frames on my frame wall are actually a lighter shade, and I painted those first with a can of left-over paint from a friend. So when I went to paint the big picture, I grabbed a paint chip card with the light color on it and picked a color 2 shades darker down on the card and just went with it. I love it!!

    • says

      While that color in a dining room is beyond my “comfort zone” per se, I will definitely consider a fun color addition — maybe if we go with a similar color scheme to the one you chose for the walls, I could look at shades of the original (and rather overwhelming!) yellow — and bring it in as an accent. Our insulated shades (we live in New England) are a muted green.

  4. says

    This is awesome!!! I’ve had grand plans for a decade to make a collage of my grandparents’ love letters from the early 1900s and do something similar. This is great inspiration. And – for the record, I plan to scan the letters first and then create the collage.

  5. says

    Thanks to your original tutorial, I had an engineer print done up at Staples to put in my huge 20×30 frame from “Cut it Out” frames. I LOVE how it turned out, & it was much cheaper than having an actual photo printed in that size!!! (If you happen to live near a Staples, it actually cost me less than $2.00 for the engineer print there!)

  6. says

    Gorgeous and so much cheaper than the professional ones we had done as a family. We had a photo shoot for my birthday and I nearly fainted when they told us the price! I will definitely be doing it ‘Sugar Bee’ style when it is time to update them x

  7. says

    So great! I’ve been wanting to try this myself since the one of your girls. I’m definitely doing it, I have a big empty wall space and everything! Thanks so much for sharing :)

    ~Jess @

  8. says

    I love this! I just stumbled upon this project via Pinterest. I am on right now trying to upload a picture to do this project. However, it is not allowing me to upload photos. Can you tell me what format your picture was in to upload it for an engineer print.

  9. says

    I printed some test prints and their great, but I have like a 1 1/2 inch line across each one…is this common or something they did wrong? It’s like the picture has a faded stripe across each one.


    • says

      I had this happen when I was printing a quote using the Engingeer Print technique – – I think the printer ink was low – the tech ended up printing it a different way for me

    • says

      I’ll do another test run and see if we can fix it…I love my pics and I did one that was pixels and it actually turned out really nice…great graphics..

      Thanks again for your help!

  10. says

    I love it!!! Thanks for sharing! Got a couple questions…. while spray glueing the pic to the board, how does it not crinkle or tear (you mentioned print is kinda thin)?? I’ve never used spray glue or heard of it..
    Also, have you ever tried it with a color print? Or only black & white?
    Can’t wait to try it!

  11. says

    You can get a colored 20X30 photo print at Costco on luster photo paper for $9. Did you put anything over the print to protect it? I’ve seen a photo texture cream and wondered if you’ve used it before? Also what are your thoughts on using mod podge instead of the spray glue?

  12. says

    You can get a colored 20X30 photo print at Costco on luster photo paper for $9. Did you put anything over the print to protect it? I’ve seen a photo texture cream and wondered if you’ve used it before? Also what are your thoughts on using mod podge instead of the spray glue?

  13. says

    I have the original how-to post on this where I talked about how I tried Mod Podge – it ruined my print and I had to go back and get another one! So I’d avoid Mod Podge, but maybe someone else can get it to work .

  14. says

    I tried to scroll through the comments to see if anyone had asked, but I must’ve missed it because it should’ve been the number one questions: where/how did you get your chandelier?? I’ve been looking, and I’m not sure about painting it because I don’t want to ruin it. HELP!

  15. says

    I’m on my way to office depot!! haha…but no, seriously, need to take a pic and do it!

    I just want to know how you ended up hanging this one up? I saw the first one you did with tape and wire, but that was with the foam board. How did you do this one, which was much heavier I’m sure!

    Adorable family!
    Goldi recently posted…Top 10 Tuesday! Do you share my special talent?My Profile

    • says

      we used a cleat thing – – it’s in the picture-hanging section of the hardware store – screwed one part on the back of the wood frame, one part on the wall, then they clip together. Good luck!

  16. says

    You are a rock star! I thought with all your comments there would be no way you’d reply, but you did, and it was lightening speed! I appreciate it so much, too! A cleat thing…I’ll check it out at lowe’s tomorrow. I called Office Depot and they said the biggest they do is 24 X 32 or something like that, but I don’t care…it will be awesome…or maybe I’ll call Staples and ask if they do bigger.

    Anyway, thank you so much for replying!!!
    Goldi recently posted…Top 10 Tuesday! Do you share my special talent?My Profile


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