The Art & Cost of Framing

The Art & Cost of Framing

There's a lot to be said for a quality frame, its an art form unto itself. A framer is worth their weight in gold. 

I occasionally get asked, "why is there such a vast difference in your pricing when a frame is added to the order?" It got me thinking, I need to provide some information on the background of framing, to give the perception of framing another perspective. So here's one I found and I think it's a great summary 

 The Art of Framing on Christie's

Frames are the Cinderellas of the art world; they do a tremendous amount of work. They protect the artworks they support; they show off the qualities of a picture, drawing attention to its formal structure, its patterns and colours, enabling them to resonate fully with a viewer; they mould the response of the viewer to the work by suggesting the value we should attach to it; they accommodate a painting to its setting, acting as a liaison between the dream world of art and the decorative scheme of the museum, gallery or private home the work inhabits. They are partly furniture and partly sculpture. At their best, they are works of art, carved by the foremost sculptors of their day, and yet their own brilliance must also serve that of the paintings they encase. As Dr Nicholas Penny, Director of the National Gallery, puts it drily in his elegant guide, A Closer Look At Frames: ‘Frames are thus not a marginal consideration in the history of art.’

And yet, anomalously, to all but certain connoisseurs and collectors, museum curators and auctioneers and the artists and dealers who depend upon them, they are practically invisible. In books of art history, in auction catalogues, the frame is expunged. In museum shops, postcards feature the artwork alone, without the frame that has been a critical part of the visitor’s experience of the work. Partly this is a necessary recognition that the artwork, especially if it is an Old Master, has most likely been separated from its original frame. Paintings have regularly been reframed by new owners, both to assert ownership and to incorporate the work within different and sometimes elaborate interior decorative schemes. But the consequence is a collective blindness to these often remarkably beautiful creations.


Image courtesy of Arten framing.                         

Back to me, hopefully this will help you make some sort of informed decision on framing and how important it is that a frame can either add to or detract from your art piece.

As mentioned in the article above, frames have been considered invisible, we know they're there, it's almost like a subconscious relationship. To put it bluntly, I don't recommend going for the cheap option, not for the sake of lining my pockets but for the sake of an overall attachment you will have your piece of art. You wont regret it in the long run and I'm speaking from experience. Worst case scenario, you can always have your framer remove the art work and add a new piece. 

So what can you expect when you purchase a frame with your art piece.


A premium foamed core board used for exhibition grade framing. The expanded foam core is lined with an extremely thin aluminium liner providing excellent resistance to warping.


I use a Victorian Ash finished with a natural oil wax covered with 3mm acrylic glazing. Non reflective acrylic or glass is available for custom orders.


Every framed piece of work is covered with 3mm acrylic glazing with .  With a hanging system built into the back. Non reflective acrylic or glass is available for custom orders.

So that's a brief introduction into framing, I will end on this saying and it's up there with one of the best in my opinion.

"The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten" Benjamin Franklin.

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