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Top 10 Picture Framing Tips

March 10, 2021

picture framing

Whether its family photos, your favourite artwork, a photo of your favourite city, landmark or your favourite car, sports player or flower etc, there is nothing more personal than a photo or artwork that is meaningful to you. Framing meaningful items can help make your house feel like a home.

Choosing the right picture frame to highlight these photos or artworks can be a daunting task for some, so here at Portfolio Picture Framers we have come up with a list of 10 picture framing tips to consider when deciding what to frame and how to frame.

1. Choose to frame something makes you smile

Its always important to choose a photo or artwork to frame that is going to make you smile. Framing a picture for the sake of hanging something on the wall will never get noticed, nor will you ever enjoy it hanging in your home.

Choosing a picture or artwork that has special meaning to you will give you warm memories every time you pass it in your home. Also, these types of framed items usually become a talking point with visitors as it’s not something you can find in your local department store!

2. Consider what you are framing

When framing a photo or artwork, consider the value of it before deciding on how you are going to frame it. If you have printed off a standard size ten cent photo that can easily be re-printed and you simply want to display it on a shelf, a ready-made frame is more than adequate.

However, if you have a limited edition or original artwork that has monetary value, or your grandparents original wedding photo with huge sentimental value, it’s always a great idea to get it framed professionally so it is treated with care and all materials used are acid free to avoid any nasty discoloration in years to come.

3. Consider the wall space

If you have a particular wall in your house that you want to decorate with a framed photo or artwork, consider the wall space in order to work out how large you want your frame to be.

If you have a large wall, consider using a very large landscape photo or artwork with matboard and a large frame. Alternatively, you could place three smaller framed photos or artwork series in a row. Either option will create a feature on your large wall.

Alternatively, if you have a small space, be sure not to frame your photo or artwork too large or it will take over the space become a feature for all the wrong reasons. In addition, its always a good idea to have a look around the room and match your frame choice in with other styling choices in the room so the frames look like they belong in that room.

4. Create a layout out of paper

Sometimes it can just become too hard to try and visual the finished size of a frame and confusion sets in. The perfect solution is to get some cheap, coloured card or even butchers’ paper from your local office supply store.

Cut the paper to the size of your desired frame size and blu-tac the paper to the wall. Move around the room and see if you like the size. If it’s too big, simply cut it down until you are happy with the size.

This method also makes creating a gallery wall very easy to plan and visualise. If you already have a range of frames that you know you want to display, but you’re not sure how to arrange them, cut out paper rectangles the same size as each frame. Then you can play around with the arrangement until you’re happy. 

5. Customise your frame – don’t make it fit

If you have the perfect photo or artwork to frame but its an odd size to the frames available, don’t cut it if it’s too big or get an oversized frame with an oddly cut matboard just to make it fit! When these methods are used to make a picture fit it can look unprofessional and exactly like you have made the picture fit the frame rather than making the frame to fit the picture.

Instead, visit a custom picture framer and create a custom frame for your photo or artwork. Whilst it is more expensive than a ready-made frame, the difference in quality and overall look cannot be compared! Custom picture framing will make sure your artwork takes all the attention and is shown off in the best way possible.

6. Add a mount

A mount or a matboard can be quickly discarded as a framing option simply because its not a required option. However, adding a mount can be an amazing way to bring a professional look to your frame and enhance the features of the actual artwork or photo itself.

For example, a wide white mount will draw your eye into the centre of the frame where the artwork is, rather than looking at the frame before you notice the artwork or photo.

Matboards can be made with a continuous colour so that the colour you see on the surface is also the colour revealed at the edge where the matboard is cut. Alternatively, the matboard can have a particular surface colour and a white core. These little details can make a big difference to the overall appearance of the framed artwork.

7. Consider a coloured frame

Coloured frames (think the colours of the rainbow!) are often not even considered or rejected very quickly as a framing option, however coloured frames can be a great way to enhance the features of an artwork or photo or bring a little colour to an area in your home that would normally be dull and unexciting.

Before crossing a coloured frame off the list, consider where you will be hanging the frame and if some colour does indeed enhance the artwork or photo that you are framing. You might be quietly surprised!

To make sure your frame and artwork stand out from the wall, avoid choosing a colour that is too similar to your wall paint. Also, avoid choosing a matboard colour that is too close to the frame colour as this will draw attention to the framing and away from the artwork or photograph you want to display.

8. Consider two frames

Sometimes we will have a customer bring in an artwork that no matter what matboard colour and frame combination that is tried, nothing seems to work with the artwork.

In these cases, it can be a good idea to remove the matboard completely and then try two or even three frames stacked together. This creates an effect that will really draw your eye into the artwork and give a truly professional look to the piece. This stacking method works particularly well with canvas frames or panorama images.

9. Less is More for Picture Framing

If you are looking to make a statement on a wall, getting a large an elaborate frame seems like the obvious choice. However, its important to consider the artwork or photo you are framing.

For example, a bold, busy and bright artwork would work much better with a plain and simple frame, you can still go large, but keep it plain. It will frame the artwork perfectly whilst letting the artwork be the main attraction.

The same can be said about placing a frame straight around a poster with a lot of white space. Adding a matboard will simply detract from the poster and just make it larger. Less is definitely more in these cases.

10. It’s all about Protection

Picture framing offer more uses that just looking good! By choosing a custom picture framer like Portfolio Picture Framers to frame your artwork or photo, you will be protecting your piece for years to come.

Not only do frames protect your artwork or photo from dust, moisture and even sticky fingers, the materials used by Portfolio Picture Framers are acid free, so your item will not discolour or deteriorate due to acid damage.

Unfortunately, many of the cheap ready-made frames that you find in the shops will actually damage artwork over time. Acidity is one of the main causes of damage. Many ready made frames are made from acidic materials that will cause your photographs and artwork to turn yellow and deteriorate over time. 

UV rays from the sun can also damage precious artwork and speed up the aging process. Custom frames can be made with specialised UV resistant glass which filters out the harmful UV rays and protects the artwork from damage.

Ready to start framing?

If you want the best quality, protection and appearance, you should choose a custom frame that is made specifically for your artwork or photograph. At Portfolio Picture Framers, we help people showcase their valuable items in the best possible way so that it can be enjoyed for years to come.

We understand that deciding how to frame a precious photograph or artwork can be overwhelming when you’re faced with so many choices. If you aren’t sure what’s best for your artwork, come and speak to us at our Myaree showroom where we can walk you through your options and offer you our expert advice.

Get in touch with us today and let’s get framing!

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