Sea Shell Picture Frame Tutorial For Kids

We just got back from a week long beach vacation and we may have collected a huge bag full of sea shells, sea glass, and other sea rocks.  When we got home we made a quick trip to Michael’s to pick up some craft supplies.  Picture frames, glue, jewelry cord, ribbon, candles, and jars are all sitting next to our dining room table ready for us to get our craft on!

We weren’t home for 5 minutes and my daughter (she’s my crafty minion) was begging me to make the shell heart frame!  The begging continued for almost 24 hours before we actually had time to sit down and work on it.  I probably won’t be opening an Etsy store anytime soon but we had a lot of fun and will have sweet memories when we look at it.

Sea Shell Picture Frame

Supplies Needed:

  • Wooden picture frame
  • Miscellaneous paint brushes
  • Acrylic paint (assorted colors)
  • Elmer’s Glue
  • Sea Shells
  • Picture from the Beach


Step 1 Paint Frame

Paint the wooden picture frame.  You can tell that we had different techniques.  I prefer one solid color; aqua of course!  Bailey decided to add all of her favorite colors; pink, purple, green, aqua, and more pink!  Let the paint dry before moving on to the next step.

Layout the shells where you want to place them.  Don’t start gluing them on until you’re happy with the placement.

Step 2 and 3

Glue on shells.  I started by gluing each shell and only using a tiny bit of glue on each shell.  Since shells don’t really sit flat I started applying a puddle of glue and placing the shell on top of the puddle.  Then I filled in the open spaces with glue to give the paint color a glossy finish.  This will also help secure the shells in place and keep them from falling off.  You can always use hot glue or a heavy duty glue but I wanted to keep this easy for the kids.

Allow to dry!  This one may take a full day to dry if you puddle the glue like we did.

Place your favorite picture in the frame and add it to your desk or mantle; or just do what I did and leave the empty frame on the mantle waiting for me to print a picture from our vacation!

What fun craft projects have you made with shells??  Or do you just keep them in a bag in the garage until the next time you clean house?  

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