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Dowel Photo Holder

Make these simple photo holders by the dozens to decorate any room with your favorite images.

Photo holder made from dowels taped together

Project Overview

Skill Level


Estimated Time

A few hours

Estimated Cost


Tools & Materials


  • Miter box and handsaw or mitersaw
  • Utility knife
  • 120-grit sandpaper
  • Tape measure


  • 1/2-in x 20-ft electrical tape, pack of 6, #291607
  • 1/2-in x 48-in poplar round dowel, #19382
  • 1-in x 48-in poplar round dowel, #19386

Items may be Special Order in some stores. Product costs, availability, and item numbers may vary online or by market.

Missing anything? Shop Online


Step 1

Cut pairs of dowels 3 inches longer than the width of the photos you display. From our 1/2-inch dowel, we cut a pair 8 inches long and a pair 12 inches long. From the 1-inch dowel, we cut a pair 10 inches long and another 14 inches long.

Step 2

Smooth the ends and any rough spots with sandpaper and wipe clean.

Step 3

Squeeze the dowels together with the ends flush and hanging over the edge of your work table. Starting 1/2 inch from the end, wrap electrical tape around the dowels twice. Cut the tape off on the bottom of the holder for a clean look. Repeat for the opposite end, making sure the dowels remain flat against the table.

Step 4

Gently pry apart the dowels to insert the bottom edge of the photo. The electrical tape will have some give to it, but avoid stretching it out of shape.

Good to Know

If the pictures or artwork curl, use spray adhesive to attach it to thick cardstock or cardboard.