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How to Choose the Right Colour Picture Frame

October 05, 2021

color picture frames

Knowing how to choose the right colour picture frame isn't as straightforward as it might seem. 

From natural wooden frames to metallic frames, vintage ornate frames and classic white frames – with so much choice, it can be tricky to know what's the right frame for the job.

Check out these tips for choosing the right picture frame for your piece.

1. Let the artwork guide you

Picture frames are very important, but they should always serve the artwork that you're framing (unless you're framing a mirror, then the frame can draw all the attention it wants!).

When it comes to choosing the right colours for your frame and mat board, let the artwork guide you. Consider what colours will suit the subject matter as well as the shades and tones which will enhance the picture and not distract the viewer.

There's no hard and fast rules, but typically if you want a coloured frame, choose a colour that's present in the art. In some cases a contrasting colour can work too.

2. Work with your wall colour

In addition to thinking about the colours present in the artwork, you should also consider the colours in the environment where the framed piece will be displayed.

Most paint colours are made from a mass tone (which we normally name the colour by) and an undertone. Knowing the undertones of your wall paint will help you choose a frame colour that's complementary.

For example, silver frames work great with cool undertones while gold frames are better suited to warm undertones.

To make your art piece stand out, avoid frame colours that are too similar to the wall colour. A nice bit of contrast – like a black frame on a beige wall – can help the art piece get the attention it deserves.

3. Harmonise with the room

Beyond wall colour, consider how you can harmonise the new framed piece with the rest of the room.

For example, you might have a particular colour theme going on with your room's décor. Incorporating one of those colours into your frame can help make the room feel more cohesive.

If you have a lot of wooden furniture and natural elements in your home, choosing natural wood frames could be a good move.

For more inspiration, check out our guide to choosing the right framed wall art for every style home.

4. Make the most of white

White frames are a classic because they're so versatile and look great with a lot of different types of artwork.

For a minimalist look that really centres the artwork, you could try a slim white frame with a white mat on a white wall. The layers of white add depth and dimension to the piece for a sophisticated look.

When working with whites, be sure to match the white of the frame to the white of the wall paint for a cohesive appearance.

5. Be bold with black

It's hard to go wrong with black. It's simple, classy and very versatile. Pairing a dark frame with a dark mat can help your artwork pop while using a light mat can help you achieve a more understated look.

6. Don't be afraid of colour

Even though white and black frames are a safe choice, you shouldn't shy away from brighter colours if you think it's going to work with your piece.

A lot of it comes down to personal taste. Go into your local picture framers in Perth and check out the different colour options they have. Seeing them next to your photo or artwork can help you better visualise what's going to work well.

Trust your instincts. If you love the way the frame and art look together, that's what you're after. Avoid the latest trends and go with something that gives you a thrill every time you see it.

7. Get your mat colour right

When you're thinking about picture framing, don't forget to consider what colour mat board you want as well. Many people overlook the power of a mat board to change the overall appearance of the artwork.

You can coordinate your frame and matting for a sophisticated and elegant look, or you can contrast them for bolder effect. Don't forget you can also play with having multiple mat boards or no mat board to get the look you're after.

For more ideas, check out our top 10 picture framing tips.

Need advice on how to choose the right colour picture frame?

Making decisions about how to frame a picture can be overwhelming if you're not sure what's going to look best. Going with a custom made frame means you have more control over the final result and better protection for your artwork.

If you're not sure how to choose the right colour picture frame, get in touch with Natasha from Portfolio Picture Framers in Perth for a free consultation.

We can walk you through the options and help you find the perfect frame to show off your piece in the best light.

Call us today on (08) 9330 5884 or come and say hi at our Myaree studio.

Send us a message!