Picture Frame Nail Polish Rack

DIY Nail Polish Rack from Old Picture Frame

When I was 16, my parents sent me to cosmetology school to become a licensed nail technician. So stereotypical, I know! But, when you own a family business and have 4 kids to feed, you do what you gotta do. We all had taken some part in helping out around the salon from a young age, though I was the only one who later became licensed. The boys got off easy, since…well, they were boys. (They still get away with everything – little turds!)

I worked in the salon for over a decade, even when I had a full time job after graduating from college! I think all those hours stuck side-by-side with my family, those damning teenage years, and all the negative things I felt being forced into the family business really affected me…I almost never cared if my nails were “done”. It wasn’t until I moved away from mi familia, that I started even remotely being interested in painting my nails.

My personal collection of polishes and gels has grown, and you guys know I’m obsessed with storage. I’ve been dying for one of those beautiful nail polish racks made from an ornate, Baroque frame. As life would have it though, I haven’t been able to find one wood/narrow/long/cheap (hah!) enough to use for a project.

DIY Nail Polish Rack from Old Picture Frame

So, I settled for this $10 beauty from a church thrift store. It’s gotta be wood!

I’ve had to put most of our house project-ing on hold, and go full speed ahead with getting stuff together for the wedding…it’s sneaking up on me!

Luckily, this project is pretty quick – grab a frame, pop out the back, and attach some “shelves”.

DIY Nail Polish Rack from Old Picture Frame

Sorry for the nighttime photos. After work is about the only time I have these days to get anything done.

After I removed the back of the frame, I cut 1×2’s down to make a box to fit the inside edge of the picture frame. +Additional “shelves” that are the same length as the short sides. You could connect it the old-fashion way with long screws, but I love my Kreg Jig. I trust the strong joints and connections of the pocket holes and screws.

DIY Nail Polish Rack from Old Picture Frame

The shelving was attached to the frame with pocket holes, as well. If you’re hanging this in place where the sides may been seen, I would definitely fill the holes prior to painting. I didn’t worry about it, since mine was really only going to be seen face-on.

DIY Nail Polish Rack from Old Picture Frame

Ta-da! I pulled out my handy paint-sprayer and went to work.

DIY Nail Polish Rack from Old Picture Frame

Now, it sits above my new vanity :). I actually ended up hanging the frame upside-down, with the pocket holes facing up, since I’m usually sitting under it and looking up. Yes, those could’ve been filled, but I honestly don’t care that much. The polishes conceal all the pocket holes!

DIY Nail Polish Rack from Old Picture Frame

These days, I only think good things about my parents’ salon. Two immigrants who came to the US with nothing but the clothes on their backs, and managed to build a successful, long-lasting (going on 23 years!) business. It was that salon, their hard work, and our wonderful clients/friends who made it possible for my brothers and me to live in a nice neighborhood, go to good schools, and get a college education. What they’ve accomplished continues to amaze to me.

Now, I’m on the hunt for HUGE frames for salon! 🙂

’til next time!


  1. Polish Perfect says:

    I like how elegant your nail polish racks is. I bought a transparent box that can fit 100 nail polish a week ago. I hope I’ve seen this sooner. Anyway I will make something like this and display my favorite colors and nail polish brands.

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