Frustration at framing

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I am now making my own solid wood frames after feeling frustration at picture framers. After spending between £60-£180 on ‘professional’ framing, I was always slightly disapointed by the results. The frames often felt light, cheap and sometimes poorly joined at the corners. A while ago, I invested in my own framing equipment which means I can carefully construct my own gallery style frames, made individually to suit each piece.

Each frame is robust and substantial, adding to the image rather than taking away attention. I use a traditional decorative moulding with a simple interior colour slip, seen in the image below.

I cut the mitre joints with a mitre guillotine which gives crisp, clean results and perfect 45 degree angles. The frame is assembled, glued and V-nailed on the front and reverse to give extra strength.

Each frame is first coated with a traditional oil based wood primer and left to dry for 24 hours. I then sand out any blemishes and apply 2 coats of white oil based satin paint. This gives a slight sheen rather than an overpowering glossy look.

The interior slip colour is selected to suit the image. You will notice in the example below, I opted for a duck egg blue to compliment the similar colours in the boat.

Finally, the paintings are fastened in place with 4 brass panel pins. This allows the image to be removed easily if nessessary in the future.

The frame comes complete with a wall hanging fixture and will attach to a single nail/screw/wall hook.

As well as being a great project, the craft of framing allows me time to meditate on Art, thinking about my current work and also considering new works. Framing my own paintings  also helps to keep the cost of original paintings down as I don’t have to add on the framer’s fee. So, everyone wins except the framer….

  Materials: Artist quality oil paints on gesso primed hardboard panel  Size (H x W x D): 35 x 35 x 0.5 cm  Year created: 2013 Handmade frame ready to hang, £299

Materials: Artist quality oil paints on gesso primed hardboard panel Size (H x W x D): 35 x 35 x 0.5 cm Year created: 2013 Handmade frame ready to hang, £299


About Andrew Farmer

I am an Artist creating in South Yorkshire in the UK. My work is mainly inspired and painted directly from nature, timeless and traditional.
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2 Responses to Frustration at framing

  1. I have always wanted to do my own frames but investing in the equipment, supplies, and learning how to do it seems so daunting. Maybe someday when I have a big ol’ garage or basement or something. But your frames look great so keep up the good work!

    • Hi Brian, thanks for your message. It really is great to be able to frame your own work, it means you are in complete control of the whole thing, you can really take your time to paint the moulding to suit the painting. I often feel under pressure to make a quick decision at the framers, I can understand that they are very busy and want to crack on with their orders but this doesn’t help me to make the right decision. It’s a great way to meditate on stuff as well, I switch off and just think about my Art most of the time, the problems, the things that are going well and also future projects. I’m going to start a contest soon, with the winner receiving a small painted study, hopefully this will be a monthly event.

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