From Around The House

Denyia Gott

Preserving Framed Art with Conservation Mats: by Denyia Gott

At FRAME USA we work all day with frames and the materials to create them, but I wondered if this little bit of information might shed some light on the importance of using conservation materials to preserve art for years to come.

When framing a picture, you may opt to include a mat board.  When using a high quality mat board, it is possible to protect your picture or artwork from being discolored by the acidic properties of a wood frame or from external factors, including the wall the frame is being hung on. The mat is not only a beautiful addition to the framing, it also creates a buffered border that prevents acid from destroying what you are trying to protect.

There are several types of mat boards you can choose to use, the main two being AlphaRag and Paper Mat.  Each of these mat boards has specific properties that make them more desirable. AlphaRag is the highest quality mat board you can purchase and is made from cotton.  Rag is extremely durable and will stand the test of time by blocking all acid from getting to the picture. The colors available are somewhat limited and the pricing is higher than any other mat board, but it is a fair trade off to have the kind of mat board used to best protect your art.  Paper mat boards are the least expensive of all the mat boards, but they also do the least to protect your pictures over time. These boards are treated with a chemical to neutralize the acidity of the wood pulp used to make the mat. The problem is that this buffer will deteriorate over time, and the acidity of the wood will eventually damage the picture by leaving a burn mark on the art that cannot be removed. These mat boards are recommended for temporary framing and should only be used for a period of time.

Spending the little extra money in the beginning will make it possible to cherish your framed piece for many years to come.  Thanks for the read, from one happy framer!

 

24 hour shipping

Fast Frames

Uh oh! You forgot that you needed a picture frame for Gramma’s birthday! You were going to give her a picture of you and your sisters learning cross-stitch from her when you were kids. You wanted something a little nicer than what the stores have but when you order online they usually take time to be built. If only it could ship out tomorrow, it would be here in time!

Well, in this scenario, your wish can be a reality. Here at Frameusa we have Fast Ship items. Certain frame sizes in a selection of common colors in our most popular frame series are kept in stock to be shipped within 24 hours of an order being placed. That means you can place an order for one of these frames on Monday and it will leave our warehouse by the end of the day Tuesday and be on its way to you.

How do  you tell what’s a Fast Ship item and what’s not? How do you know if it’s in stock? Items that are Fast Ship have a unique item number. It’s the same as the non-fast ship version (you can still have them built at the normal 6-8 business day time frame if we don’t currently have any in stock) but it has the letters FAS in front of it, and it’s in red.

fas cutout

You could go through each picture frame series, item by item, checking to see if that frame has Fast Ship items. That could be a long and tedious process though with the wide and varied selection of frames we have. That’s why we have a tab at 24 Hour Shipping the top of our website–“24 Hour Shipping”–that contains every series that has Fast Ship items. You can go straight to them, find a series that you like and then check to see what sizes and colors are available for 24 hour shipping, and if they’re in stock.

You’ll find frames from each category reprensented here–wood frames, metal frames, shadowboxes–they all have items that we keep in stock in those particular colors and sizes.

So now you know that if you need a high quality but affordable picture frame to ship out quickly there are options at Frameusa. Have fun choosing your Fast Ship frame!

Dorian Richards

The Art I Hang in My Home: Dorian Richards

Dorian Richards My name is Dorian Richards and I’m a new face in the customer service department. Before arriving here, I knew nothing about framing and all it entails. Once I was able to learn, it sparked my interest in things I didn’t really value before. I had a desire to frame and display what matters to me the most. Of course, that would be my family.

My first picture is a few random photos of memories that I’ve shared with them. There is never a dull moment when it comes to my family. From a grandparent showing his grandchild the art of Indian poker or your mom photo bombing your selfie, these are moments I never wanted to forget. It shows exactly what it reads at the top “Family is everything”.

dorian blog 2

My second photo is my lovely parents! This photo is something I really cherish. My mom and dad have been married more than 25 yrs. They give me something to look up to. This picture was taken on my mom’s 50th birthday. With all these great memories that I have, they are made even more special with the perfect frame. If you love your family as much as I do, I would recommend keeping these moments alive by putting them in the quality frame.

dorianblog 1

blog

The Art I Hang at Home: Taylor Harris

blog Hi, my name is Taylor, customer Service Representative for Frame USA. I by no means am an artistic person, but I do appreciate art that carries meaning. When I hear from a customer who is looking to frame a diploma, wedding portrait, first day of school picture or any other special occasion I put myself in their shoes. There is no better feeling than finally choosing a frame for that piece that means so much to you and hanging it in your home.

My husband and I purchased our first home almost a year ago. The first blog1 piece of art we purchased was actually from a family member. My uncle Marvin Espy is an artist, designer and photographer who now resides in Charlotte, North Carolina. He sketched an image we sent him of our twin boys and produced an AMAZING piece of art. I couldn’t wait to frame it. I chose the Corporate Wide Grey Barnwood picture frame. Looks pretty amazing wouldn’t you say?

Next I wanted to find frames for our kids’ newborn pictures. We had guests at our baby shower sign the mat around our twin’s pictures welcoming them as soon as they got home. Unfortunately the frame was broken during the move. The Corporate Wide frame we used for the sketch looked so good we decided to get two more!

blog2 blog3

I would be remiss if I didn’t talk about the art in my husband’s man cave. He is a boxing fan so I thought why not get him “The Greatest” Muhammad Ali poster from Posterservice with Frame USA’s Architect blog4 Walnut picture frame. It was a hit!

The picture frame is just as important as the piece of art. The choice of frame can make or break its’ presentation so make sure the frame you choose compliments your art piece and is of made of quality materials. I certainly feel I made great framing choices.

Decorate It 2" Frame

Framing Up Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day is all about letting someone special know that you’re thinking about them. One way to do that is by getting them a gift. You can buy something expensive (like jewelry), or something you know they need (like a gardening trowel) but the gifts that leave the biggest impression are the ones that have meaning behind them. The thoughtful presents that you create yourself that shows your valentine how well you know them. A great way of doing this is by putting significant photos or mementos from a special moment into picture frames and then customizing those frames.

At Frame USA we have a number of different frames that would be perfect for creating this kind of unique Valentine’s Day present.

The Decorate It Frame

This is an unfinished picture frame with a flat profile that comes in 3 different widths (1.5″, 2″ or 3″). It is created especially

Decorate It 2" Frame
Decorate It 2″ Frame

for crafting. You can paint it, glue on it, and use a wood burning pen, anything you can think of to decorate the frame. You could get small wooden hearts or other Valentine’s Day items (even those little candy hearts) and affix them to the frame with an inside that reminds the person of a fun time you’ve had together.

The Unfinished Frame

Unfinished Profile 1
Unfinished Profile 1

This frame is another unfinished wood frame (as the name might suggest). Like the Decorate It, the Unfinished series comes in 3 different profiles, but these are more decorative with some scoops and beveling in the frame. This picture frame could be painted in a rosy, reddish or dark pink color with a picture of you and your valentine together held within it. A classy way to celebrate your relationship.

 

 

 

Laser Engraving

Maybe you don’t have a lot of time or are just not good at crafting, painting or applique. You can still customize a frame for

Corporate Wide Red Mahogany
Corporate Wide Red Mahogany

your sweetheart to create a special memory. At Frame USA we are able to laser engrave names and even logos onto certain frame series that are found in the Laser Engraving category. You can engrave on any or all of the frame rails, oriented how you like. The laser burns away the finish to show the wood (or metal) beneath. You can engrave their name, maybe dates or a special quote or song lyrics. The possibilities for making your valentine go, “Awwwww!” and look at you with puppy-dog eyes are endless.

Shadowboxes

Remember that time you and your valentine went to the___(theater, restaurant, beach, etc.) and they kept the___(ticket stub, receipt, shells you found, etc.)? Wouldn’t it be a great Valentine’s Day

Shadowbox Elite Honey
Shadowbox Elite Honey

surprise to put those in a nice display? Frame USA has several  different shadowboxes that are just right for showing off  mementos. In our Shadowbox Elite, Shadowbox Showcase or Barnwood Shadowbox (for those  who appreciate a rustic look) you can mount those items to the foamcore backing and give your  special someone a gift that is both stylish and thoughtful.

 

 

 

 

Posters & Posterframes

Not all valentines are ready for something so meaningful. Maybe it’s someone you’ve been dating for a short while–long

Terminator in a Budget Saver Black Frame
Terminator in a Budget Saver Black Frame

enough to get them something but not long enough to make them a memory box–well we still have you covered. You can always pick them up a poster from Posterservice and put it in one of Frame USA’s poster frames. We have music posters, movie and TV posters, humor, art prints, and scenic–anything anyone could have an interest in. You can find something they would like. This still shows that you know what they like and want without over-doing the sentiment.

So as February 14th gets closer, consider giving your valentine something they can hang on their wall and cherish for many Valentine’s Days to come.

 

meganblogpic

The Art I Frame at Home: Megan Kelley

Hello art enthusiast and frame prospectors!

 

Believe or not, before started working for team Frame USA, my family was (still are) loyal customers to this fine picture framing establishment! I especially adore the Custom framing department we have. There  is an array of styles, from traditional to modern to myriads of different mats to create limitless framing combinations to help your artwork integrate into the luxury of your living space. And as a recurring visitor to our retail store, I’d like to welcome you to join the virtual tour of “The Art at Fort Kelley.”

patti smith I take great value and deep appreciation for pieces that preserve the good memories in my life.  Here is a Shepard Fairey print I bought at the Contemporary Art Center when he was in town exclusively performing DJ at the CAC after party. It was also my first time interacting with the artist and letting me try out his custom made OBEY vinyl records, a fun experience that is hard to forget! Well, for sure now that I have this piece hanged and to view on a daily basis.

I also collect prints that revolve around my interests and inspirations, it might be remotely apparent to see that I may have doctor who a geeky nature with the pop culture and sci-fi universe. This one is a Doctor Who illustration by Adriana Melo, a Brazilian artist. I admire her pin-up comic book cover style, among the composition and subjects involved, it exhibits a great summation of my favorite season of the show! The blue confetti frame style I chose out of our custom collection emulates the iconic blue TARDIS, the time machine that takes the characters on myriads of adventures by traversing through time and space.

As a bunch of artists living under the same roof, we have no shame in hanging up our own artwork around the various triptych house. Well, maybe it’s just we have parents who like to express how proud they are of their kids. Here we exhibit a mixture between mine (far right) and my sister’s (middle and left) pieces we’ve done in college. As the maker of some of these pieces, I can support the fact that these were preambles to my current body of work. But it’s immensely interesting to see the personal growth from then to now. Here is winter picture another painting I created back in ye olden college years: a master’s painting based on the one of the artworks at the Cincinnati Art Museum’s permanent collection. Maybe you’re wondering why there’s no face, well I’m sure there’s was a perfectly good reason back then for which I have none now.

california triptych

 

Whenever I go to FrameUSA to get framing done, it’s just like going mall shopping for a dress. Attempting to find the best look to your artwork is imperative, regardless. Out of the wide variety of styles of frames and shades of mats they have, they can create countless of designs in order to cater to your preference and tailoring to your artworks figure. As my photos can attest, FrameUSA has done an excellent job helping me find the right dress for my artwork.

 

Superfriends Poster

Nostalgia Trip: Superfriends Poster

“Meanwhile…back at the Hall of Justice…”

Does that phrase cause chills of excitement for the adventure that’s about to happen? Then you were probably a kid in the 70’s or 80’s sitting cross-legged, eating cereal and because it was Saturday morning and you were watching the Superfriends.

Superfriends Poster
Superfriends Poster

Actually, it could have been Saturday morning or any afternoon during the week depending on what year it was. Hanna-Barbera’s Superfriends ran, in one form or another, under various titles from 1973-1986. New episodes aired on Saturdays but reruns were on all week long during “cartoon time” (the time after school, before the news came on–duh). The show featured DC characters from the Justice League of America comic books–Superman, Wonder Woman, Batman and Robin, Aquaman, Green Lantern, the Flash, and Hawkman. It also featured some characters created specifically for the show, Zan and Jayna (the wonder twins) and their space monkey Gleek, as well as the well-intentioned but racially dubious Black Vulcan, Samurai, Apache Chief and El Dorado. They all came together to battle aliens, monsters, mad scientists and most importantly–The Legion of Doom. The Legion of Doom were the arch nemeses of the Superfriends made up of classic DC villains like Lex Luthor, the Scarecrow, the Riddler, Brainiac, etc. Their base was a cool flying dome shaped like Darth Vader’s helmet that rose out of a spooky swamp. No matter how powerful or bad the Legion was, however, the Superfriends always managed to prevail. Usually do to some deus ex Machina solution that came out of nowhere near the end of the episode. It was colorful, bright, silly and full of the best sound effects ever.

That’s why we here at Frame USA and Posterservice are very excited to be getting in a new 22×34 Superfriends poster featuring the heroes outside of the iconic Hall of Justice (which coincidentally was designed based off of the Union Terminal building which is here in Cincinnati). This will be a great addition to any of you nostalgia nerds, cartoon lovers or DC completist’s collections. Perfect to put in a picture frame and hang in your office with all of your other movie posters and framed art.

And what kind of picture frame or poster frame would complement your Superfriends Poster? On Frameusa.com we have just about any frame you could think of to house your poster. There are a couple in particular though that might suit it best.

Deluxe Poster Frame Silver
Deluxe Poster Frame Silver

If you’re thinking cheap picture frames (financially speaking) that are still sturdy and look good, your best option might be our Deluxe Poster Frames. They come in black, gold and silver, and for your Superfriends poster, I’d suggest silver to give it that sci-fi feel.

Maybe you want a more substantial frame to hang your poster in though, there are some good metal picture frames and wood picture frames that we offer that would show off your Superfriends art nicely.

Our Metal I series comes in a number of simple colors (red, white, blue, gold and silver) and has a shiny

Metal I Blue
Metal I Blue

finish. The red and blue especially would set off the poster seeing as how many of the characters costumes contain those colors.

Colori Medium Yellow
Colori Medium Yellow

For a great wood picture frame option, our Colori Medium comes in a number of bright, solid colors (red, blue, orange, yellow green) that, again, go with the childlike, cartoony feel of the poster. I would still probably go with a red frame or a blue frame although a yellow Colori frame would also make the Superfriends poster pop.

Whatever you decide, if you want to recapture a little of that innocence of your lost youth, or you’re introducing your kids (or even grandkids!) to the Superfriends, picking up a poster from Posterservice and putting it in a nice picture frame from Frame USA is a great way to do it. It will make you feel like a hero.

 

 

Lindsay ALlen

Adventures in Canvas Framing

Post by Lindsay Allen, Inside Sales Representative for Frame USA

Lindsay ALlen

Lindsay Van Gogh
Lindsay Van Gogh’s Masterpiece

I recently had the opportunity to join a class at Painting With a Twist. Let me tell you, this was by far THE BEST Wine and Canvas workshop that I’ve been to (if you aren’t familiar with these workshops I HIGHLY recommend them to anyone)! Now, I am an absolute novice when it comes to painting, but at the end of the class I felt like Van Gogh (metaphorically speaking of course)! So, when I brought the canvas home, I was so excited to find the perfect spot to hang it but something just didn’t seem right, it was almost naked on my wall. Something was missing on my beautiful canvas, but what?

 

A frame of course!

 

I used our sleek Build-A-Frame feature on Frameusa.com to upload an image of my piece and, voila! I found the perfect picture frame for my one of a kind canvas! For those who have stretched canvases at home, and love to frame your pieces, here are some quick framing tips!

 

  • Always make sure you order frames with no materials (shell only)

Since the canvas is painted, this actaully seals the fabric and prevents deterioration of the fibers. So glazing is not a necessity when it comes to framing canvas. This will save you money rather than having to pay for a frame that comes with a bunch of materials that you don’t need. However, make sure that you have hardware to install the canvas on your own. Off set brackets can be found at any frame shop, or hardware store.

  • Make sure you pay attention to the depth of the “rabbet” in comparison to the depth of your stretcher bars.

For example, if your stretcher bar is ½ inch deep, the rabbet of the frame must be at least ½ deep. Otherwise the canvas will not be flush with the back of the frame.

  • Make sure you have the appropriate hanging hardware for the size of your framed canvas.

The biggest mistake a lot of people make is attempting to hang their canvas on too thin of wire, or anchors that are not compatible with the weight of the frame. This is very dangerous, not only for hanging a framed canvas, but for hanging any type of frame. If you are unsure of what type of hanging hardware to use, please ask a professional to assist.

 

Floating Frame
The Floater Frame

Also, if you’re one of those crafty people who like to step out of the norm when it comes to framing, another great frame option is our Floater Series! What makes this frames stand out from the others is that it is a front loading frame, making your canvas appear to be floating inside of the frame. It also has a ¾ deep “rabbet”, which is deep enough for most stretched canvases.

Lindsays framed canvas

 

I am so excited to get my canvas framed and hung on my wall! It will truly be a work of art!

 

 

 

Clair Shaw

Arting and Framing

Hi, my name’s Clair. Quality Control Specialist for Frame USA by day, Artist by night. Clair Shaw

If you’re like me, you love art. You love books stores, pop-up art shows, old classic movies and home remodeling TV shows. Most importantly you love creating and decorating your home/work space with the images you love. Be it posters, reproduction, original art, or family photos. You surround yourself with what makes you happy; with what makes you, uniquely you.

If that sounds about right then you might agree that there is no better feeling in the world than finishing or buying a piece of art that you love. However, there’s no worse feeling than the one that usually follows when you ask yourself, “how am I going to hanging this?” and quickly realize your spending is not over.

Perhaps like me you’ve tried to cut corners when it comes to framing. Let’s be honest, Framing can be expensive. So, you own several bulging portfolios and enough cardboard tubes to build the world’s largest telescope. I mean, it’s not enough that we as artists and art coinsures have to spend money to make art and acquire art, but we must also spend money if we plan at all to enjoy it.

But.

If there is one thing I’ve learned in all my years of arting and framing, whether you’re selling or buying there’s simply no arguing the effectiveness of a fantastic framing Job. I see it all the time in our Custom framing shop. Customers bring in old sentimental images probably worth nothing more than something you could find at a yard sale. But, because it’s special to them, they invest, and the final product is always breathtaking. Just imagine the effect quality framing has on something truly unique and timeless. It’s magical. Just ask our Raving fans!

I promise, nothing will enhance the appeal of your artwork, whatever it is, more than a beautiful frame. And let’s face it, appeal is essential if you ever want to be a professional artist, impress your in laws, or get that promotion you’ve been working so hard for.

That’s why we at frame USA pride ourselves in not only the quality of our frames, which I personally see to on a daily basis, but the affordability of our picture frames. Each woods frame at frame USA is cut, joined, filled, and hand quality checked right here in our American home base facility ensuring not only quality and affordability, (like I’ve mentioned) But also that your money stays here in our wonderful U.S. of A.

We know the importance of arting and framing and the impact it has logistically and visually in your homes, offices, studios and galleries. Let us be the ones to make your art something really special; something that demands to be noticed. It’s what we do best.

Decorate-It 2"

Framing Fall Foliage

October is here. Pumpkins, warm apple cider, a chill in the air and falling leaves. Lots and lots of falling or fallen leaves. When the foliage turns color and begins to drop from branches, it might be fun to preserve some of the more beautiful specimens you can find. There are hundreds of crafts that can be done using autumn foliage that are great for kids and adults, but we will just talk Autumn about two very simple ones that you can do using picture frames from Frame USA.

Before you get to the frames however, you have to get some leaves. The first week of October is prime foliage collection time. Everything has had a chance to change to those beautiful red, yellow and orange hues and have hit the ground but are still supple and haven’t really started to dry out and turn brown and crumbly. Try and get as many different types and colors of leaves as you can, large and small. A variety of shapes to choose from will make your crafts more interesting. Plus, it’s just nice to be out in the crisp autumn air. When you get them home, if you’re not going to use them right away, be sure to store them in a cool, dark place. It wouldn’t hurt to put them in sealable, airtight plastic bags either.

Once you have a good selection of leaves, you can start the first project; framing fall foliage as a picture. There are a lot of ways you can arrange your leaves, but the two that are easiest is to frame one large leaf by itself, or create a collage of different leaves, almost a mosaic. The first thing you’ll want to do, either way, is to preserve your leaves a little. I suggest starting out by drying them. You can do this very easily by putting them between two pieces of wax paper and then closing them in a large book overnight. Once you’ve done that, you’ll want to spray your leaves with a UV resistant acrylic sealer. This will help keep their colors from fading over time. You’ll want to do one side, then when that dries, flip them over and do the other. These are both spray-heavy projects actually, because I also suggest using spray adhesive (for this first project) and you can also use a glossy spray finish if you want to give your leaves a shiny look. Once you’ve treated your

Colori Large Orange
Colori Large Orange

leaf or leaves, and they’re dry, you can spray a piece of white foam core (all of these supplies are inexpensive and can be purchased at your local craft/hobby store and the leaves are free) with spray adhesive and quickly (but gently) affix the leaves or leaf in the position you want them/it. The adhesive dries quickly so you won’t have much chance to rearrange so you will want to plan this out first.

Appalachian Barnwood Rustic Brown
Appalachian Barnwood Rustic Brown

We have several wood picture frames that are ideal for autumn inspired framing project. The first is one of our rustic barn wood frames. Our Appalachian Barnwood to be exact. I would recommend it in the rustic brown color to give it that real outdoors-y, fall feel. This is a real wood frame with a 3/4″ recess and a 7/16″ usable depth. This is a good frame for any DIY type of project and perfectly shows off homemade art and photos.

If you’re looking for something a little more whimsical and bright, I would suggest our Colori Large picture frame in orange. This frame is made from an eco-friendly wood composite and finished with a colorful wrap. It has a flat 2″ profile and a 1/2″ usable depth. This frame is great if you’re doing this project with kids and want to maybe hang the piece in their room or in a classroom. It also comes in yellow and red, if you’re doing multiple frames and want to represent all the fall colors.

Now that we’ve framed leaves, it’s time to put leaves on the frame itself. After treating your leaves you can choose a bunch of different ones that you like to affix to the outside of our Decorate-It wood picture frame. The Decorate-It frame is made specifically for crafting and comes in 3 flat profiles; a 1 1/2″, a 2″ and a 3″ width. For this kind of project I recommend the 2″ width to give you more room to play with.

Decorate-It 2"
Decorate-It 2″

You can use spray fixative for this again but because it’s wood I would actually suggest using a very thin layer of wood glue to hold the leaves really tight. Arrange them in any pattern you like around the edges of the frame and after you’ve glued them in place I suggest spraying them with the gloss finish, and a layer of spray adhesive, just for good measure and to make them look good. After everything dries you now have a nice autumn picture frame that you can maybe put halloween photos or Thanksgiving photos in.

Autumn is maybe the prettiest season of the year and you’ll be glad you have something in your home that reminds you of it all year long.