From Around The House

Summer Vacation Photo

One Last Summer Craft: Cheap, easy, fun project before the kids go back to school!

Summer vacation is almost over. For some of you there may be a scant few days left before the kids head back to school. You feel like you’ve done it all; amusement parks, road trips, the zoo, the aquarium. You’ve played games together, seen movies together, the whole gamut of activities has been run. You’re all a little tired but you don’t want to just sit around and do nothing, but you don’t have a lot of time (and you don’t want to spend a lot of money). What can you do?

A fun and

Decorate-It 1.5"
Decorate-It 1.5″

relatively easy activity is decorating unfinished picture frames to commemorate all the special things you and your kids did over the break. If you’re lucky enough to be home with your children over the summer, you know that it’s fleeting and you want to have something that you, and they, can hold on to. At Frame USA we have a frame that is specifically made to be crafted and decorated. It’s called the Decorate-It frame and it comes in 3 widths (1.5″, 2″ and 3″–for when you need a lot of room–).

The decorate-it is made from real, unfinished wood so that it can be painted on, glued on, have wood-burning pens used on it–anything you can think of. In addition to coming in three different widths, the decorate it picture frame also comes in a ton of standard

Summer Vacation Photo
Summer Vacation Photo

sizes, including 8×10, 11×17 all the way up to 24×36. But hey, maybe you bought some nifty piece of art at the Summerfest art fair that you all went to and it’s not a

Decorate-It 2"
Decorate-It 2″

standard size. That’s okay because the decorate it also comes in custom sizes as well.

You can sit down with the kids, take your decorate it frames, and maybe pick out pictures together of the fun stuff you did over the summer. Maybe when you were running around the museum, or at the bacon festival. You can paint the frame with your favorite colors and even glue decorations onto it. Did you happen to keep the movie tickets from when you took the kids to see “Avengers: Age of Ultron”? You can glue those to the frame that has the selfie you guys took together in the lobby that day. And even if you didn’t take a lot of photos (because you were too “in the moment” to worry–a good thing to be) you can sit down with the kids and talk about their favorite memories from the summer and have them draw pictures of those days. Paint the frame to match the weather that was happening (lots of blues if it was rainy,

Decorate-It 3"
Decorate-It 3″

oranges and reds if it was hot and sunny). This way you can sit and enjoy reliving those memories with your children as they talk about how much fun they had at the splash park and the time you saw a skunk on the nature trail. And afterwards, you’ll have a beautiful reminder of each and every one of those little moments.

So get out your paints and feathers and glitter and beads, gather the kids around the table, on one of these last long afternoons before school starts. And don’t forget to order some unfinished, decorate-it wood picture frames from Frame USA, to help you get every last ounce of quality time you can.

Fancy Frame

LET’S GET FANCY

Iggy Azalea isn’t the only one who can get fancy around here. Occasionally we all want to show off with a bit more pizazz and panache. This applies to our home and office decor as much as it does to our clothes, and specifically, the frames we hang. Sometimes, depending on the art we’re framing, a modern or rustic look just isn’t enough. Those styles are both very fashionable and can be utilized more broadly, but when the picture is something extra special, you have to go big or go home with your picture frame.

For those art pieces that you want to treat like royalty, Frame USA has a number of picture frames that are ornate enough to give

Modena Antique Gold
Modena Antique Gold

you that “wow” factor, without overpowering the image it holds. Perhaps you’ve picked up something at an antique shop, like an old map, or print. It’s unique but not something that holds a lot of sentimental value (yet). A good choice might be our Modena frame. These frames have an “aged” look and are available in “Antique Gold,” “Antique Bronze,” and “Antique Silver.” They’re perfect for something that has an air of history to it.

But maybe what you need is something with a bit more grandeur. A picture frame that doesn’t just compliment the art, but

Presidential Aged Pecan
Presidential Aged Pecan

also tells people how important that art is to you. Family portraits or pictures of loved ones who are no longer with us deserve to be framed in something more regal. Our Presidential picture frame is an excellent choice for these kinds of pictures. The Presidential series has a 2″ wide profile with a steeply sloped outer edge and curled “rope” along the inner edge. It comes in three colors, “Aged Gold,” “Aged Bronze,” and “Aged Pecan.” It’s a picture frame that demands respect for both itself and the artwork cradled within it.

“Both of those are beautiful, American made picture frames,” you might be saying, “but what I have needs something that says, ‘all eyes on me.'” You want a frame with a lot of intricate detail that stops just short of going over the top. For the original watercolor you commisioned or the limited edition print, signed and numbered by the artist, you want people to “ooooh,” and “aaaah.” We have you covered with two different frames. The most ornate in our collection. The first is our Napoleon picture frame. The Napoleon, much like it’s namesake,

Napoleon Antique Gold
Napoleon Antique Gold

is a conqueror, taking charge of any room it’s placed in. It combines the beading of the Modena with the rope of the Presidential and adds a flourish with a striking inner scoop. Like the other two series it has three colors, “Antique Gold,” “Antique Silver,” and “Black with Gold.” However, if you want to crank the fanciness level up to 11 while still staying tasteful, we have one more picture frame for you to consider. For maximum drama try our Victorian picture frame. With a delicate intertwining of carved embellishments, the Victorian

Victorian Walnut with Gold
Victorian Walnut with Gold

stands above the rest as a frame that leaves no doubt that you are making a deliberate, bold statement. Luxurious and maybe a bit aloof (but still alluring) the Victorian frame comes in “Antique Gold, and “Walnut with Gold.”

So even if your usual style is more low key and laid back, it doesn’t hurt to get a little fancy every now and then. After all, you deserve it.

Appalachian Barnwood Grey

Barnwood is Beautiful!

Sleek and modern styling for decor has been in fashion for a while now, but recently a return to a more rustic approach has been gaining popularity. A lot of people are finding that the homespun, outdoorsy look helps them relax better after they’ve spent a long day at an office where the surroundings are all straight lines and neutral colors. This has led to a boom in the business of “reclaimed” wood–wood taken from demolished farmhouses, outbuildings and barns–to create furniture and decorations. And of course, here at Frame USA, our interest lies in one particular form of home decoration: Wood picture frames.

There are different kinds of reclaimed or “barnwood” styles on the market. The most well known is the kind that is actually reclaimed from those old farm buildings. The planks are taken away and stripped of paint and checked for errant nails and splinters before being collected and sent to the artisans and manufacturers who will create picture frames out of it. What lends it so much charm are the imperfections that come with it. The slightly warped or uneven edges, small knotholes and chips. This lets you know that it is real and has its own unique history.  The one problem with truly reclaimed barnwood is that, sometimes the imperfections can be too imperfect. It’s impossible to catch every knothole that’s just a little too big, and sometimes those chips are big chunks to noticeable to overcome.

To get around that, some suppliers have created a barnwood look, made from regular fresh lumber, but distressed to give it that reclaimed, country look. This ensures that, while the style is reminiscent of true barnwood (sometimes impossible to tell from a distance) it has a more consistend finish for those who are looking for a material that’s easier to work with.

At Frame USA, we currently have two different barnwood style frames that are made in the USA. Both of these are of the second, barnwood-style type (though we are planning on carrying the true reclaimed barnwood frames again in the near future–we’ve had great success with them). The first kind is our Appalachian Barnwood picture frames which are the closest to our old style reclaimed wood frames.

Appalachian Barnwood Grey
Appalachian Barnwood Grey

These come in four different colors (Grey, Whitewash, Rustic Black and Rustic Brown) and all of our standard sizes up to 24×36. They have the distressed and “stripped” look of true barnwood and feature a “double frame” style build. These are ideal for putting up in a den, family room or living room.

Our other current style of barnwood frames is our Farmhouse Barnwood series. These have a simpler build, with a flat profile and come in two different colors, white and charcoal. These picture frames also have a distressed finish, and with their simple profile

Farmhouse Barnwood White
Farmhouse Barnwood White

would go well in a kitchen, bathroom or bedroom (though either of these wood frames would work perfectly in any room of your house).

So if you have photos and art you want to hang in frames that remind you of a time when things moved a little slower and lives were a little less hectic, think about picking up one of our barnwood frames. True beauty that’s found within imperfection.

blog_school_supplies

August means Back to School!

It’s still hot, it’s still summer, but now that August has rolled around the kids’ vacation days are numbered as the start of a new school year looms on the horizon. A new school year means new pictures and art from your student and new pictures and art means new picture frames.

School photos are nice to keep because they show how much your child has grown since they started way back in kindergarten. If you have the wall space, a fun idea is to frame

Architect Natural
Architect Natural

them in order to show that progression. What are good picture frames for this kind of project? A wood picture frame is always the way to go for your 8×10 school pictures. Nothing too fancy, something versatile that will enhance the pictures instead of detracting. I would suggest our Architect series. It’s a  real wood picture frame that comes in a number of colors. It’s slim and attractive and has a nice homey feel to it.

But what about the kids’ art? It’s fun to see those early drawings where they’ve done a stick-person family portrait in front of a house made up of a square with

Colori Large Orange
Colori Large Orange

a triangle on top. They may not ever get much further than that artistically or perhaps they do develop a talent and their art becomes amazing. Either way, you’ll want to preserve and display some of these pictures. For the early school years art pieces I would suggest a fun colorful series like our Colori. Colori comes in both a wide and a narrow profile and is available in bright vibrant colors like orange, red, yellow and blue. It’s available in standard sizes, typically 8.5×11 and 11×17 but goes all the way up to 24×36. As your child gets further along and their talent emerges, you might want to consider a more mature frame to hang their masterpiece with. The Executive is a great wood picture frame that comes in rich, warm colors like Library Mahogany

Executive Library mahogany
Executive Library mahogany

and Burgundy (there are 6 different colors). It’s a high end but inexpensive frame to proudly show off your student’s best artwork. It’s also a good frame at graduation time for diplomas and certificates.

Your kids’ school years go by surprisingly fast and with framing their photos and art, you’ll always have something to cherish and remind you of how special they are.

summer vacation

Summer Vacation Means Photos!

The phrase, “Summer Vacation” packs a wallop of images, emotions and memories. You can almost smell the hot dogs cooking on the grill; hear the sound of a baseball hitting a bat and the roar of a crowd at the ballpark. You think back to running through the sprinkler on the lawn to cool off. You remember sticky ice cream melting  onto your hand as you hurry to finish your cone. But if your family ever went s away from home during the summer months, that’s probably what you think of the most when you hear “Summer Vacation.”

Road trips to the grand canyon, umbrellas and loungers on the beach, poorly erected tents in the woods; the vacation could have many different faces but their was always a pattern to the whole affair . Sing-alongs in the car the first hour maybe. The license plate game, snacks and sodas. Everyone getting along. At some point the novelty of being out and about wore off and people settled back into their habits of getting on each others nerves. But always with love, and through it all, you enjoyed sharing the experience with each other. It didn’t matter if you bickered here or there, you grew closer with every little delight and disaster. And while all of this was going on, someone was snapping pictures.

Every family seems to have at least one photo bug. Before the digital age they would have a clunky old Polaroid or Kodak hung around their necks on a strap. Cajoling everyone to, “say cheese,” and click-click-clicking away at the shutter button. Afterwards when you got home they’d get their spools of film developed and meticulously sort them and put them into an album maybe, or make a collage. These moments, captured forever on a piece of photo paper, become treasured family heirlooms. The tradition of vacation photos is as strong as any holiday tradition a family observes. It’s a way to preserve those moments for future generations and for those whose memory has maybe gotten fuzzy. They’re important.

So when you want to frame your vacation pictures, a sense of style should be considered. These are not just vacation photos, these are the ones important enough to take out of the album and put on the wall. The frame you choose will impact the way the picture is viewed.

A flat fronted profile is always a good way to go. Sleek, and versatile, you can really use them in any decor, whether it’s modern, country or shabby chic. Our corporate series of frame is a great example of this.

But let’s say you want something with a little bit of pizazz. Nothing ostentatious but with a little bit of design interest. A slim frame with a rounded face and maybe one beveled channel. Our Classic series comes in Black, walnut and cherry and can give it that extra little bit of oomph you’re looking for.

Whatever you decide, hang your summer vacation photos with pride. Let them remind you of the smells of grilling and the sounds of baseball. Let them transport you to those moments where you felt wonder alongside annoyance and love.

Our Classic in walnut
Our Classic in walnut
Corporate_Walnut
Corporate Frame
Framed Newspaper about Pete Rose

Thanks for the Memorabilia

With San Diego Comic-Con and the Major League Baseball All-Star-Game having both just wrapped up, it’s been a big couple of weeks for collectors of all kinds of memorabilia. Millions of dollars were spent, on posters, bobble heads, shirts, autographs, toys and items of every kind; all to be taken back home to be proudly displayed. A few of these may just be thrown here and there or shoved, forgotten on to bookshelves but serious collectors require serious displays. Frames, shadowboxes and wall shelves become the pillars of the monuments to their fandom.

The Walking Dead
The Walking Dead 4
Item # PSA009739

Memorabilia is the common ground where comic book nerds and film geeks meet sports fans and music freaks. Collecting is a big business. In an increasingly digital age, people who are passionate about the things they love–the things that form part of their identity–want tangible examples that they can hold and touch. In a world where you can download any song, or image or movie or picture, it can be very satisfying to say, “I actually went to a place and bought this. I was with other people who love what I love and here’s a real souvenir of that.”

Depending on how much the items mean to the collector, the amount of money spent on memorabilia can go from a very small amount (one retailer has a vintage Princess Leia action figure for sale at $12.99) to what may seem unimaginable to a non-collector ($7.2 million for the original manuscript of Don McClean’s “American Pie” lyrics). When a collector spends that kind of money on something they want to preserve it and display it in the best way possible. There are nearly as many different kinds of displays for memorabilia as there are actual types and genres of collectibles. Some of these are ornate and expensive; huge, multi-tiered curio cabinets with non-glare, uv protected glass and humidity controls. Some may be hand carved wooden mantlepieces where a fan’s collection of the 1975 Cincinnati Reds baseball cards may sit, each one mounted to it’s own plaque. But after spending so much on the items, there are ways to display one’s collection without blowing out their bank account.

Frames and shadowboxes are great ways to show off your collectibles. For flat pieces like newspaper clippings, prints, posters, art and programs, wooden frames are great for hanging your piece. There are a lot of great frames at Frame USA that are perfect for this. Our Black and White series is a simple but elegant frame that will show off your piece without distracting from it.

But maybe what you’re trying to show off isn’t flat. Maybe you want your friends to ooh and ahh over your vintage 80’s original My Pet Monster doll. For 3 dimensional items, a Shadowbox is always a great way to show off collectibles that have a little more heft. We have three different shadowboxes that are perfect for this purpose. Our Shadowbox Elite is great for smaller items (action figures, lead painted figures, baseball card collections). Our Shadowbox Showcase has a bit more depth so your Lord of the Rings Mithril chainmail shirt and ring of power have room to breathe. And for your 12″ tall Tardis replica? Our 3.5″ deep Shadowbox Boxer is perfect. Sports fans need not feel left out. All of these shadowboxes are also great ways to display your jerseys, bobbleheads, game-balls and autographed items.

So show your collectibles with pride! Let everybody know that you’re a Dr. Who/Star Wars/Batman/Walking Dead/Avengers/Bengals/Metallica/Stanley Kubrick/Cavaliers/Disney fan. Frame up those pieces and let people know who you are.

 

Framed Newspaper about Pete Rose
Pete rose breaks Ty Cobb’s record

How to Decorate your Apartment Without Nails or Screws.

There are so many sites and blogs out there dedicated to helping you decorate your first apartment or house. In fact when you do a quick google search for Decorating your first apartment  you will get about 23,400,000 results to sift through.

After going through the first page of results I had an overwhelming realization that not many of those 23,400,000 results gave me something that was temporary. All of them talked about hanging frames, or screwing in mirrors or adding shelves. All of which are the perfect solutions for those that have purchased a house (we’re personally biased on the hanging frames part). However for those that are transitioning into their very first apartment, all of these tips are crap. When you’re  renting a space you don’t have the ability to screw things into the walls, add shelves, hammer in nails or even sometimes paint your walls a fun color without the risk of forfeiting your security deposit.

So what is a new renter supposed to do to turn their rented Apartment into a home?

We’ve come up with some great ways to decorate an apartment that doesn’t require nails or screws.

one of the easiest ways to decorate your apartment is with fun furniture. A funky couch or chair can really spice up a living room. For those that aren’t into having such a big purchase be the focal point of the room. Try to use pillows or blankets as a way to add color. You can get pillows with sequins or lace  or different colors the possibilities are endless.

Since we aren’t a full shop for decorating we know more about decorating with picture frames and art. The only problem is that what happens when you have a large piece of art— large frames take screws or nails.

But don’t worry you have some options, for one, if It is a frame that is not too terribly large you can purchase what we refer to as an easel mate.

Screen Shot 2015-06-20 at 9.54.23 PM

The easel mate is perfect for the larger more manageable frames such as 11×14 and smaller that don’t normally come with an easel back. It screws into the back of the frame and turns  that hanging frame into a table top frame or a shelf frame.

The other option if the piece of art is too large is to have an easel mate is to use poster mounts or mounting tape. This is a mountable adhesive that allows you to hang posters and art prints to just about any surface and have it easily remove.

Apartment Mounting tape

The other option for the larger pieces is to hang it with a frame. If you are thinking how can i hang my art with a frame, didn’t you just say that large frames don’t work in apartments? You would be right, I did say that. This isn’t your normal type of frame. This frame is something called poster hangers.

apartment poster hangers

These are plastic pieces that slide on to the top and bottom of the piece and sit flatly on the wall. These poster hangers typically come with metal saw tooth that you screw into the wall but for our particular purpose that won’t work. But these can also use the poster mounts or mounting tape as a way to add some pizzazz to a piece and still not leave a mark.

 

So use these tips and go forth and decorate your new home but first, tell us, What are some of your apartment decorating tips that don’t require screws or nails?

Spring Cleaning Tips

Cleaning for Spring with Ease!

April showers and flowers starting to bloom are signs that spring is here. With spring comes spring cleaning. Regardless, if you find spring cleaning enjoyable or not looking forward to it at all, here are a few tips and tricks to ease the hassle.

  • Create spring cleaning goals and a timeline

Figure out what you want to accomplish during your cleaning. For example, is it putting all your winter clothes in storage and pulling out your spring/summer wardrobe? Do you want to redecorate your kitchen or bathroom? Do you want to give your home an old fashion deep cleaning? Once you created your goals, give yourself a timeline. A realistic one! Here’s an example of a time line for someone whose goal is deep clean their home.

Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday
Kitchen Bathroom(s) Living Room Bedroom(s) Basement/Garage Office/Den Yard/Patio

 

  • Get your family involved

Take the load off yourself. If you have small kids have them take on the smaller chores (cleaning door handles, throwing things away in the pantry, separating laundry). For older kids, have them vacuum, wipe down glass, etc… Involve your partner in your spring cleaning. Have them tackle one room while you do the other. Or maybe you both can take on the kitchen, so it gets done quicker. Getting help, not only lessens the load on you but gives your family a sense of ownership when it comes to cleaning and taking care of the home.

  • Maintain your home daily

What’s the point of spending a week of cleaning and the next week, it’s back to before? Your home needs daily attention to maintain order. Take a few minutes every day to keep your home intact. Utilize the schedule in tip one, to keep up with your daily upkeep.

 

Decorating Tip!

Turn your picture frame into a calendar. It is a great and creative way to keep up with your cleaning schedule.

Blogger Amanda at ohamanda.com has a great tutorial how to do this. Click here for details…

Useful Tips for Decorating

National Decorating Month: Useful Tips to Make Decorating Easier

April 2015 — National Decorating Month

Almost every month has a whole bunch of really obscure holidays that go unappreciated. The Month of April has April fool’s Day on the 1st but it also has countless other holidays to celebrate daily. Today there is the option of celebrating Rubber Eraser Day or Titanic Remembrance Day. Most of the holidays serve as a silly way to pass the time and great conversation starters. Among the daily holidays, the month of April has been designated as National Decorating Month.

Decorating for some people is as easy as walking, for others, decorating causes immense anxiety. Being in the framing industry we would like to consider ourselves experts at decorating, but even we sometimes have questions. We found that the best place to find the answers is Pinterest.  Almost everything you ever need to know can be found on Pinterest, you just need to know what to search for!

We’ve decided to take the grunt work out of research by providing you with an easy way to get useful tips from one source: Our Pinterest Board.

Pinterest Decorating Post

Our Pinterest board is a mecca of a variety of different topics relating to home decor. The most recent induction to our Pinterest boards, Useful Tips, is where you can find the answers to your questions and turn decorating back into something fun.

Useful Tips for Decorating

Here are some of our favorite tips that we have found to be useful! Check out our Pinterest board for even more useful tips!

How to fill Nail Holes Decorating Tip     How high to hang frames decorating tip     Curtain Diagram Decorating Tip Hanging Style Decorating tip

Hang frames decorating tips

 

 

If you have any tips we would love to feature them on our blog and add them to our Pinterest Board, reach out to us!

Final Match

Frameusa.com Picture Frame Championship Final Match

Update: The 2015 Frame USA Picture Frame Championship Winner is….

FINAL CHAMP.  

FRAMEUSA.COM PICTURE FRAME CHAMPIONSHIP FINAL

We started this championship with 16 different frame series to figure out which one is considered the Ultimate Picture Frame by our customers. After close games and difficult choices you have chosen the two series that will meet together for the first time to fight to the death to find out which one is the ultimate picture frame.

The Corporate Narrow picture Frame Series has been a favorite from the beginning winning the matches against Cafe Narrow, Architect, AND Glory Metal by a landslide. It’s easy to see why this frame has made such an impact on our customers! This series is quite possible the most versatile line of frames on frameusa.com. The moulding is classic and the colors are modern and fresh.

The success of the Shadowbox Showcase Picture Frame Series came as a bit of a shock to folks around the office right from the start. The first win came against the more popular traditional series, Shadowbox Elite. This was the start of the Cinderella story of this series. The fans of this series are going to really have to step up their game if they want to see it in the winners circle.

 

Its safe to say this is going to be one exciting, nail biting final match!

Fight for your favorite by casting your vote. The Ultimate Picture Frame will be decided on 4/2/15 at 3:45 PM EST.

 

Team Corporate narrow Frame Match 1

Team Shadowbox Showcase frame

The ultimate picture frame winner will receive its reward the evening of 4/3/15 so be sure to sign up for our mailing list so you don’t miss out!

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