Stick Frame Variations

There have been some inquiries about the process of making what I call “Stick Frames”. These unique picture frames are constructed using a table saw’s miter gauge coupled with a MicroJig MatchFit Dado Stop Block. The pieces fit together like a jigsaw puzzle in the corners of the frame using half-lap joints cut on the table saw. The setup produces some tight joints that are simply glued together where the joints intersect each other without the need for miter cuts. The half-lap joints provide a lot of gluing surface combined with the additional physical strength of interlocking pieces at perpendicular angles. With the MatchFit Stop Block no measurements are needed. You use the stick material itself to set up the dado cuts that lock together to form the picture frame.

The photos below demonstrate just a few of the variations on a theme limited only by the woodworker’s imagination.I think they are beautiful, strong and precise. As soon as New England gets past the Nor’Easter presently hammering Massachusetts I’ll  start making a few of these stick frames and show you the live results. In the meantime my raised container vegetable gardening is getting all kinds of free water, compliments of Mother Nature! 🙂

Stick Frame 1

Stick Frame Variations

These photos were taken from a PDF file downloaded from

Copyright 2016: R. Bagnall and appeared originally in

Woodcraft Magazine, January 2007

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2 thoughts on “Stick Frame Variations

  1. in the top frame looking at it almost seems like because of the different colors as if it is raised although it is not. Like them.

    • The top picture of a frame sitting on the table saw is a real photograph. Once I complete my first stick frame I’ll setup and take a similar picture on my own equipment. I think I’m going to settle for spar varnish with no stain added because stain put on top of preconditioner and then a topcoat is added on top gets really expensive.

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