New composite deck on the back of a house

If you're a deck enthusiast looking to enhance the appearance and durability of your outdoor space, picture framing your deck is a technique worth considering. Picture framing involves installing a border around the perimeter of the deck, creating a visually appealing and professional finish. Not only does it add an element of elegance, but it also helps prevent the deck's ends from exposure and wear. In this step-by-step guide, we will walk you through the process of how to picture frame a deck, ensuring your project is a success from start to finish.

Gather the Necessary Tools and Materials

Before you embark on your picture framing project, make sure you have the following tools and materials ready:

  • Tape measure
  • Circular saw
  • Miter saw
  • Chalk line
  • Screw gun
  • Deck screws
  • Decking boards (for picture frame)
  • Decking boards (for main deck area)
  • Joists
  • Fascia boards
  • Fasteners

Plan and Measure

Careful planning and accurate measurements are crucial for a successful picture framing project. Start by determining the size and shape of your desired picture frame. Measure the length and width of your deck, allowing for any overhangs or desired gaps between boards. Decide on the width of the picture frame border, keeping aesthetics and functionality in mind.

Cut and Install the Picture Frame Border

Using the circular saw, cut the decking boards for your picture frame to the appropriate lengths. Ensure that the corners are mitered at a 45-degree angle for a seamless look. Lay out the boards around the perimeter of the deck, ensuring they are parallel to the main decking boards. Secure them in place using a screw gun and deck screws, making sure they are level and properly aligned.

Install the Main Decking Boards

With the picture frame border in place, it's time to install the main decking boards within the framed area. Begin at one end and work your way towards the other, leaving a small gap between each board to allow for expansion and drainage. Use deck screws and a screw gun to secure the boards to the joists below, ensuring they are level and evenly spaced.

Add Fascia Boards

To further enhance the visual appeal of your picture frame deck, consider adding fascia boards. These boards will cover the exposed ends of the main decking boards and the picture frame border, providing a polished and finished look. Cut the fascia boards to the appropriate lengths, ensuring they are mitered at the corners. Attach them to the deck's rim joists using fasteners, ensuring they are securely fastened.

Finishing Touches

Inspect your picture frame deck for any protruding screws or sharp edges. Use a sander or file to smooth out any rough spots and ensure a safe and comfortable deck surface. Apply a protective finish or stain to the deck boards, following the manufacturer's instructions, to enhance durability and aesthetics. Consider adding railings, lighting, or other decorative elements to further personalize and enhance your deck.

Enhance Your Deck with a Picture Frame Design

By following this step-by-step guide, you can transform your deck into a stunning outdoor space with a picture frame design. The border created by the picture frame adds a touch of elegance while protecting the ends of the deck boards. Remember to plan carefully, measure accurately, and use the right tools and materials for a successful project.