An artwork's frame is like a plants pot. Both can be transformed into something even more beautiful once they are presented in something that protects them, but also enhances their chosen character.
It can sometimes be a little daunting buying art that needs framing; All these endless options and possibilities, the haste to get it straight up there on your walls for all to admire, and quite importantly the added costs. I've framed many screen prints for customers, but also had larger, more precious original drawings framed by professional framers as well.
This little post is here to help with some hints and tips of what to get professionally framed, where you can cut a corner or two, and some tips for framing on a budget.
The image below is my-man-Brian of Hogan Framing framing some of my works for an exhibition last year.
First of, when deciding how to frame your work you need to consider these two factors -
1. How valuable it is to you
If this piece of artwork has been an investment to you (financially or emotionally!) then I'd advise you to stretch your budget and get your artwork professionally framed. A good framer will be using acid-free Archival quality products to create your frame (such as the tapes, backing and matt boards) this will aid in preserving you artwork, and keeping it exactly how it should look for many many years to come. Not to mention it will look sexy as!
Unless otherwise stated, most store-bought frames will not be made with acid-free materials, which over time can discolour your artwork. They will also not be fully sealed, allowing moisture to penetrate in and again, over time could warp the artwork inside its frame; especially if you live in a humid climate.
If you are trying to fill a larger wall, choose a frame with a large mattboard, surrounding the artwork. This will not only give your artwork space to breathe, but will create more of an impact. Don't forget, let your artwork shine, and don't go tooo crazy with colours and frames as this may distract from the artwork itself.
If you are on a budget for framing, a great way to get a quality frame for less, is to source a good quality wooden or metal frame from a second-hand shop or op shop that is larger than your artwork; You can then go to a framing shop and get yourself a matt-board cut to fit your artwork and new found frame! Matt board can vary in price at different framers so shop around. Remember you will pay more for archival quality but if its for a special piece its definitely worth it!
Sometimes we may have a favourite postcard, record, or print that we want to display but don't need or want to go the full hog and have it professionally framed. For these items there are some great options for great looking 'casual' framing. One of them you can see in the image above; Check out Corner Block Studio for these wooden frame ends that cleverly frame a print, vynil sleeve, book (or whatever else you can think of!)
I also love this quaint but rather shmick double sided glass frames. Super quick and easy to change up whats inside your frame. Postcards, prints, stamps...
These are from Anthropologie.
For items that aren't too precious or delicate, these options are great! If you get bored of whats in the frame you put something else in it.
Pre-made frames with double sided glass are also beautiful; I love them leant against a wall that contrasts with the colour of the artwork. They are especially great because they look great even if artwork is too small for the frame, and can be used to display dry flowers or palms like below. These are by Moebe.