To start I measured the tile and decided to take 2mm off each side to sit the tile inside the frame.
|Cutting the wood|
And each piece was cut to length.
|Checking the size|
The pieces are joined using dowels, so to work out where I needed to drill holes, I knocked a panel pin with the tip snipped off in to the end of one of the pieces.
|Marking the drill points|
This pieces of wood were lined up so that they were square along the edge and I pushed them together so that the pin marked a hole where I needed to drill to set the dowel.
|Lining up to mark the opposite piece|
You can see the two holes here once the panel pin was removed. I did this for each of the four corner joints. I also numbered the pieces so that I could make sure that the right bits were joined together.
|Drilling the dowel holes|
Next I drilled down in to the wood with a bit slightly smaller than the dowel I'm using to give it a snug fit. The tape on the bit is so that I drill each piece to the right depth.
|Making the dowels|
I took a length of dowel and cut some rods.
The dowels were glued with gorilla glue which needs the wood to be damp to cure.
|Fitting the frame|
And the whole frame was pushed together.
|Clamped to dry|
|Routing the groove for the tile to fit|
Once dry, it was time to cut out the back of the frame for the tile to sit in. I got this brilliant router attachment for my dremel drill. Big routers are terrifying, so this little version was much better. I used a guided bit which has a little bar on the end to run around the inside of the frame so that you get a neat, even finish all the way around. It took a few passes to get to the depth needed for the tile to sit flush in the frame. And with each pass I stepped the router down a little bit more until the tile sat nicely in place.
|A coat of wax for protection and colour|
After filling any gaps (using a PVA and sawdust mix) and a good sand all the way around, the frame was given a coat of wax. This is Jacobean Oak colour. It goes on looking pretty rough, but after a polish it has a lovely warm finish.
|Fixing the tile|
The tile was secured using some corner grips.
|Ready to hang|
And a hook was added to the back for hanging.
|The finished frame|
And here's the finished framed tile. I'm really pleased with how this turned out, the first attempt took a whole day to make, but once I'd got the hang of it, I worked much faster.
I made a couple of chunky versions for smaller tiles.
This one for a blue glazed design.
|Smaller framed tile|
And another with added handmade nails for a more rustic finish.
|Frame with handmade nails|
This could also easily be adapted for framing art with glass. Follow the same steps, and use the router to cut to the depth of your piece of glass and a hardboard backing.
Custom wood frames are really expensive, but for a few £'s/$'s you can make your own to fit any piece of artwork you create!