Command Center – A Picture Frame Up-Cycle

Coomand Center from an old picture.Featuring a chalkboard

Hi, welcome to The Old Summers Home. When you have a family, life can be chaotic and very busy!  It can be hard to remember every appointment and social event coming up when you’re constantly on the go. Having one simple place with a calendar, clipboard and a space to  jot down notes can help solve this problem. The solution? A Command Center!

The Old Summers Home Command Center UP-Cycle

Command Center Tutorial

Today I’m going to show you how I took this old dirty frame and turned it into our very own Command Center, a staple in our family’s organization. This is one of my favourite types of DIY projects. Restoring an old item left for trash and creating a beautiful new creation giving it a new  purposeful life! I found this extremely dirty, falling apart, frame in a friends’ basement. He was more than happy to get rid of it, woohoo! I immediately knew this frame had so much potential, but what to use it for exactly I still was not sure. The possibilities really are endless with such a beautiful find.

My vintage mirror find before picture

Step 1- Cleaning my frame

The frame was damaged and coming apart so I started with gently cleaning it with a wire brush. Because it had sat on a dirt basement floor for years it was extremely dirty. I used a bit of water to help with the removing the excess the buildup. Once it was clean there were some pretty big noticeable gaps in the frame so I decided to take the frame apart.

The vintage frame in two separate pieces during the cleaning and repair process

Step 2- Rebuilding my frame

I cleaned it a bit more now that I could get into the nooks and crannies a bit more easily.  I used wood glue and stapled it each section very carefully back together. Because of the dirt basement the frames details have become very brittle. At this point I was still deciding what I would use it for. I wasn’t completely set on putting it back together or whether I should use it for two separate projects. I decided I loved the extra detail and bulk of it as one piece so I glued and stapled them into one original piece again. Make sure to use clamps to hold the frame together until the glue sets.

Picture frame rebuilt as one piece for our up-cycled Command Center

Step 3- Painting my Command Center

Now I decided it would be a Command Center for our newly freshened up Kitchen. Our kitchen has many elements of teal and turquoise and I knew it would be perfect in a dark shade of turquoise contrasting against our one lone white kitchen wall. So after the wood glue was dry I gave it a couple coats of Rust-Oleum chalked spray paint in Tidal Pond. Make sure to check it under good lighting when you have lots of details like this frame.

Command Center frame spray painted Tidal Pond

Step 4- Corrugated plastic for chalkboard insert

While I left the frame to dry, I cut out a piece of plastic corrugated cardboard to fit the frame. This material is light weight which is perfect when restoring an old heavy vintage frame. Simply cut your desired length with an exact-o knife along your line, turn over and cut through the last layer. Now give it a couple coats of chalkboard paint, I believe it took four coats to get a nice thick layer on this that covered well. Don’t forget to season your chalkboard before first use! Simply follow the instructions on your can of paint for seasoning.

Corrugated plastic cardboard cut to size ready to paint

Step 4- Assemble your Command Center

Once all the paint was good and dry I put the corrugated plastic into the frame and used the existing nails to hold it in place simply by bending them back over. You can also add stables or flat tacks to the back to keep it more secure and from pushing outwards during use.

Command Center frame and chalkboard assembled.Initially I used the original rope to hang it and when we came home that day it had fallen and smashed to the ground. I was so upset with myself for this oversight. Don’t be like Jenn! Use fresh durable rope! After fixing the frame yet again I used new rope to hang it and made sure it was really good and secure. Now it hangs in our kitchen as our new Command Center.

Step 5- Hang your masterpiece!

Our family Command Center being utilized

Now you can add a calendar, a clip to hold your important notes and use the chalkboard to write special notes you need to remember. The corrugated plastic is perfect for use of tacks and makes a great chalkboard too.

Step 6- Bonus idea, Chalk holder!

my cute little clothespin chalk holder

I also added this clothespin to hold my chalk. I simply spray painted it, hot glued a twine bow to the clothespin then hot glued it to my frame.

The Old Summers Home Command Center  DIY Up-Cycle Picture Frame

Our little Command Center helps keep us on track so we do not miss important events and reminders, well as frequently as we may have in the past, haha, we are not perfect. If you liked this tutorial you may also like our Cookie Jar Up-Cycle. Thank you so much for visiting at The Old Summers Home today! I hope this tutorial inspires you to create your very own Command Center! Be sure to check out our other DIY posts and tutorials.

Until next time,

Jenn Summers

The Old Summers Home

At The Old Summers Home we are sharing how to create your very own Command Center by up-cycling an old picture frame

2 thoughts on “Command Center – A Picture Frame Up-Cycle

  1. Sarah says:

    What a great DIY and upcycle project. I have only recently stumbled upon the idea of a command center, but I think it would be an excellent addition to our home. I’m going to have to see what I have on hand to make my own.

    • Jenn Summers says:

      Thanks Sarah! I really was not sure how much use I would get out of it but I use our command centre all the time and it helps me remember the most important things. Would love to see what you come up with!

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