DIY Coastal Clothespin Photo Frame

This charming, DIY vintage-style photo frame will have you reliving happy beach memories every time you walk by!

There’s something about displaying photos from vacations and travel adventures that allows you to cherish the happy times each and every day.  It adds to the bliss of the present, when we take a moment to soak in the times that bring us joy!

So we’ve made a coastal-inspired photo frame that’s vintage-style with mini clothespins, a beachy distressed look, and a pop of color straight from the seas.  To add to the coastal charm, it uses a fishing net to hold the photos.

And if you’re looking for a thoughtful, personalized gift idea, it’s a beautiful way to bring good vibes and smiles to the person who receives your unique creation!

So relax, kick back, breathe in the salty air of memories, and get inspired to make a version of your own.  (Here’s the pin on Pinterest if you want to save for later:)

Here’s what you’ll need:



  • open-backed wooden frame
  • white paint (we used chalky, but it doesn’t really matter!)
  • aqua paint (we used 2 kinds, one dull and one bright)
  • paint brush
  • jar or cup of water
  • paper towel
  • scissors
  • decorative fishing net
  • mini clothespins
  • hot glue gun
  • doo-dads like resin starfish, seashells we’ve found, and artificial flowers (we didn’t end up using near what its pictured!)

How to make it:

1. Paint the frame with very watered down white paint.  You can load your brush with water and then take a tiny dab of paint to help give it the white washed look.



2. Once the white wash is dry, use the handle end of the brush to dip into the aqua paint a little.  Remove much of the paint from the handle by scraping the sides off on the side of the paint jar.  Then, roll the handle on the planks of the frame where you want the aqua color.  Basically, you’re just looking to add color unevenly, leaving some of the white-washed finish unpainted.



We had a little too much paint on the handle, so we used a paper towel to dab any excess paint.  (Don’t smear it though, or you might fill in the in-finished spots.)  It surprisingly gave it a little more of a distressed texture!

dab excess paint

3. At this point, we realized that the aqua chalky paint wasn’t really as vibrant as we wanted…so we raided our craft paints in search of a brighter aqua color.  And then the finger painting began!  Just dab a bit here and there over the existing aqua.



You can also paint any of your doo-dads to match the aqua paint:

paint starfish

4. Once the paint is all dry, flip the frame over and lay out the fishing net so that it will be a little taut once glued.  (We used a piece we had already cut from the original size…so you will likely need to cut it to where it has several inches to spare on the sides of the frame as you see in the first picture below.)

Fold the net up so that it allows you to apply a line of hot glue on the wood (one side at a time).   With the hot glue applied, fold the net back down on it, being careful of your fingers as you bring the net to the glue!  Repeat with the other sides, and then hit any unattached spots with more glue to be sure it holds.



5. Once the glue is good and dry, carefully cut the net around the edges, being sure to only cut the edge. You’ll be using the leftover pieces in the next step.



6. Take the cut-off pieces of net and play with how you want them to peek out of the frame (and where the doo-dads will go).

To attach, tuck the ends through one of the openings in the corner, and hot glue it to the back.  Once the hot glue is dry, trim off any of the excess net.



7. Now it’s time for the finishing touches!  Add your doo-dads with hot glue, and again be careful not to burn your fingers 🙂



8. To complete, add the mini clothespins and photos! (We printed wallet-size photos.)

add clothespins to fishing net frame

And there you have it!  It’s easy to adapt to whatever frame you find and the clothespins make it super easy to change out the photos too.

Just hang on the wall and you’ll be feeling the happy of your beach memories every time you walk by.  Soak it in and cherish!



DIY Coastal Clothespin Photo Frame - Living Porpoisefully

Live porpoisefully, The Taylors


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