Whether you’re trying to restore it or take it apart to use on your next woodworking project, the disassembly of a picture frame will typically require the removal of hardware like nails and staples. So read through these tips for removing staples from a picture frame to ensure you can pull off a clean removal that doesn’t damage the frame’s structure.
Ensure You Have the Right Tools
Please don’t think cracking your knuckles and plucking at your frame barehanded is an effective way to remove staples from it; it isn’t. Instead, it’s prudent to ensure that you have a couple of tools on hand before you get started with a project like this. Luckily, the tools you need to get the job done are few, simple, and easy to find:
- Towel or another soft surface
- Upholstery staple remover/screwdriver
- Needle-nose pliers
Use a Soft Surface
An excellent tip for removing staples from a picture frame is ensuring you have a soft surface to lay it down on. If you think about it, you likely used a power fastening tool, such as a picture frame nailer, to secure the staples into that wood frame.
So, removing them is probably going to require a bit of elbow grease on your end. Moreover, when you have something soft like a bath towel to cushion your frame as you work, it gives you the leeway you need to remove the staples firmly but without damaging the structure.
Position Your Frame Appropriately
Next, you’ll want to pay close attention to how you position the frame as you work. Remember; to remove staples from a wood frame, you’ll likely need to keep a firm grip on it. But you’ll also want to be mindful of how you should handle the frame, being thoughtful about the way you hold it in relation to the staples you’re attempting to remove.
For instance, if the staples are on the front or the back of the frame, it’s probably best to lay it down flat. This will make it much easier to remove each staple quickly and without harming the frame.
Remove Staples With Care
And of course, the last step in this process entails the best way to remove the staples from your frame. This is where that upholstery staple remover, screwdriver, and needle-nose pliers will come into play. First, you’ll use the staple remover to get underneath each staple.
Then, you’ll apply pressure and pull upwards on the staple. If you don’t have a staple remover, using the flathead of a screwdriver can work just as well.
Either way, these tools should help you lift the staple out of the wood, so you can go in with your needle nose pliers, get a firm grip on the pin, and pull it out of the frame. Then, you’ll repeat this process until each staple is out of the frame entirely.
So if you’re looking to revamp, restore, or remove some extra staples from your favorite frames, remember to be thoughtful about how you remove them. And if you have all the right tools and techniques at your disposal, there’s no reason you can’t pull of this simple project without damaging your frames.