Big Boy Room Custom Wall Gallery

DIY engineer prints = Inexpensive wall art

I’m very slowly beginning the process of decorating our new home, and focusing on the areas where inspiration strikes me the most. Dub’s room is the one I have the most concrete vision for, and I knew exactly where I wanted to start when I saw this idea for engineer prints for a boy’s room.

I immediately set out taking images of the things most important to Dub. He loved being able to be a part of it in this way. I sent the images to the FedEx copy store and ordered 18×24 engineer prints. Not only do I love how they turned out, but you can’t beat the price! All four for around $20.

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I mounted the engineer prints to inexpensive particleboard with a white coating, so the wood color wouldn’t bleed through on my white images. I chose particleboard because I was worried that foam core would warp over time, and I plan to have these images up for years!

DIY Engineer Prints for Big Boy Room | FIve Marigolds

I positioned the print over the pre-cut particleboard, then carefully lifted the print corner by corner, edge by edge, spraying adhesive spray directly to the board underneath. I smoothed the paper over the board with each spray. Fortunately, I found that the paper and spray to be very forgiving, and at times lifted the paper multiple times before re-smoothing onto the board before deciding I was happy with the result.

DIY Engineer Prints for Big Boy Room | FIve Marigolds

The trick to having your local print shop print your engineer print is to call in advance to make sure they offer this service – not all of them are set up to make these prints.

Additionally, make sure your print has at least 25-50% white space, if possible. I’ve heard of print shops refusing to print images as an engineer print if it uses too much ink, which is hard on that printer and not what it was designed for. My print shop called me to double check I actually wanted the images printed this way, because the quality is not that of a photo. Once I confirmed it was exactly what I wanted they printed them, no further questions, and I was very pleased with the result.

I then followed the DIY frame tutorial from Young House Love. I used poplar wood for these frames, because it was the least expensive option.

I’m super happy with how this project turned out. Dub and I may or may not have hung out in his room and  just stared at them for awhile. He tells me he plans to use the frames as mini shelves for all his important little treasures.

DIY Engineer Prints for Big Boy Room | FIve Marigolds

DIY Engineer Prints for Big Boy Room | FIve Marigolds

Like the look, but not in the mood to take on a project? Try these similar, inexpensive frames here.

DIY Engineer Prints and inexpensive frames for Big Boy Room | FIve Marigolds


Want to see more progress on Dub’s  room? The other kids’ rooms? See more:Industrial Boy's Bedroom Design. | Five Marigolds  Sophisticated Blush and Gold Baby Nursery | Five Marigolds Proverbs 31 Subway Art using clear contact paper and Silhouette SD. Stain is Minwax Early American. | Five Marigolds

Engineer prints make a big statement on a small budget. Love these for a boy's room!

32 thoughts on “Big Boy Room Custom Wall Gallery

  1. lollyjane says:

    Love this room! Gathered lots of great ideas, thank you for sharing! We’ll be featuring this space at our link party later today! XO

  2. maria says:

    Thanks for your reply. Did you spray glue and mount the engineer prints (thin paper)onto foam core before putting into frames? How did you avoid having the engineer prints buckle/get wavy or not sit flat once inside? This is tricky paper to work with in large size and other bloggers used heavy glass to weigh down the print (front and back – cut glass from Lowes — mind you they were bloggers that got the materials free from Lowe’s) and others used double sided tape and or spray glue. Jsut wondering what you did!

    • fivemarigolds says:

      Goodness, I originally had all of that information, but somewhere along the way I inadvertently deleted it from the post! Thank you for notifying me of that! I went back in and shared exactly how I adhered the engineer prints to the boards. While you do definitely need to smooth out bubbles as you work with the paper, I found that the paper and adhesive glue were forgiving, and I peeled it back and re-smoothed it until I got it to the place. Even if I had the luxury of sponsorship for this project, I wouldn’t have chosen to add glass because it didn’t fit the rustic/industrial look I was going for. I hope that is helpful! Thank you for stopping by!

    • fivemarigolds says:

      I had mine made at my local FedEx print shop, but many printing shops offer this service. Just call in advance to ensure they offer it, as I’ve heard some stores resist printing photos on this paper. The trick is to ensure your image has lots of white space. The more ink your photo uses, the harder it is on their printer and they sometimes guide you to printing a regular enlarged poster.

  3. Ashlee says:

    How did you get the background of your picture is white… Did you Photoshop? Or did you use a background? Very cute idea… I think I’m going to try it for my sons room

    • fivemarigolds says:

      I photographed him in front of a brightly light white wall, then before I sent it in I also erased the background in Photoshop so the only thing printed would be the subject of the photo. If you don’t have Photoshop, there are many phone apps that would allow you to do this!

  4. Cameron says:

    Wow this is amazing! I’m going to try… do you even glue down the middle of the paper or just the corner and edges??

  5. Kristi says:

    I love this!! Can you tell me why engineering prints are best for this? I stopped at a Staples and they said that it’s just thinner paper and too much ink could make a hole in it because it would saturate it too much. They said they have heavier paper (still pretty light) that would work just as well. I really like the look of these so I want to make sure I’m not missing something with the engineering print. Thanks so much!

    • fivemarigolds says:

      Hi Kristi! The benefit of the engineering print is a large scale image at an exceptionally low price. Even poster prints at the local copy store cost much, much more! The trick with engineering prints is to ensure you have a nice balance of white space, to ensure a clean, attractive print.

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