How To Frame Art Properly: Tips and Tricks for Framing Your Artwork!

Framing art enhances its visual appeal and preservation. Experts recommend using acid-free materials, UV-protective glass, and appropriate spacing to prevent damage. Seek professional guidance for delicate or valuable pieces for the best results.

Keep scrolling if you’re looking for tips for framing art, including custom-framing options and affordable methods!

Selecting the Right Frame

Choosing the perfect frame style is crucial for showcasing art. It’s not only about aesthetics but also about elevating the overall presentation and ensuring the frame enhances, not dominates, the artwork.

Here are a few things you should consider:

Understanding Frame Materials

Materials for framing hold more significance than one may anticipate. They impact the longevity, visual appeal, and even the weight of the artwork in its frame. Below are a few frequently encountered framing materials to ponder:

  • Wood: Classic and versatile, wooden frames offer a range of possibilities. Customize them with stain or paint to complement your art and decor. Opt for oak, maple, or walnut for their durability and appealing grain patterns.
  • Metal: Metal frames, typically crafted from aluminum or steel, present a contemporary and polished look. Lightweight and available in diverse finishes such as matte black or shiny gold, to suit your preferences.
  • Plastic: Budget-friendly and light, plastic frames can imitate wood or metal aesthetics. They might lack the same level of sophistication, though.
  • Composite: Composite frames are a blend of wood and plastic. They’re more affordable than solid wood frames and are often used for reproductions and posters.
  • Acrylic: Opt for acrylic frames for a sleek, museum-worthy look. Crystal clear and almost weightless, they’re ideal for displaying modern or minimalist art.

Matching Frames to Picture, Print, & Painting Styles

Okay, let’s delve into the art itself. Choosing the right frame is essential, and it should complement the artistic style. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Traditional Art: For classic paintings, consider ornate wooden frames with intricate details to complement the traditional vibe.
  • Abstract Art: Modern, clean lines work well with abstract art. A simple metal frame or a floating frame can emphasize the artwork’s uniqueness.
  • Photography: Black and white photographs often pop in sleek metal frames, while color photos can benefit from wooden frames that match the subject matter.
  • Landscape Art: Nature-inspired pieces look fantastic in wooden frames, especially if they echo the tones and textures found in the art.
  • Contemporary Art: Contemporary and avant-garde pieces can thrive in minimalistic frames. Think metal or acrylic to maintain the focus on the artwork.

By paying attention to the frame style, materials, and how they complement your art, you’re well on your way to achieving a harmonious and visually striking presentation for your prized artworks.


Matting, often overlooked next to frames, is crucial for artwork presentation. It serves to visually separate the artwork from the frame, providing a significant visual element. Its importance lies in:

  • Protection: Matting helps protect your artwork from direct contact with the glass or acrylic covering. This separation prevents condensation, which can lead to mold or damage over time. It also safeguards the artwork from sticking to the glass, preserving its integrity.
  • Enhancement: Matting enhances the overall presentation of your art. It adds a sense of depth and provides a breathing space between the art and the frame, making the piece look more balanced and professionally framed.
  • Focus: Matting can draw the viewer’s attention to the artwork itself. It can guide the eye and emphasize specific elements or details in the piece, enhancing the visual impact.


Mounting your artwork correctly is crucial to maintain its structural integrity and visual appeal. The mounting technique you choose should depend on the type of artwork you have:

  • Hinges & Corners: These are commonly used for works on paper, such as watercolors, prints, and drawings. Acid-free mounting hinges are applied to the back of the artwork, allowing it to float within the frame. Mounting corners can also be used for a non-adhesive option.
  • Dry Mounting: This technique is suitable for photographs, posters, and other art on paper. The artwork is adhered to a foam or mat board using a heat-activated adhesive, creating a flat and smooth surface.
  • Canvas Stretching: If you have canvas artwork, such as oil or acrylic paintings, it’s typically stretched and stapled onto a wooden stretcher frame. This method keeps the canvas taut and prevents wrinkles.
  • Shadow Boxes: For 3D art or objects like collectibles, medals, or memorabilia, a shadow box is a fantastic choice. These boxes allow you to display your art in a three-dimensional manner, creating depth and intrigue.
  • Float Mounting: Ideal for pieces with captivating edges or textures, such as handcrafted paper or canvases with texture. It gives the illusion of the artwork “floating” in the frame, offering a distinctive and contemporary appearance.
  • Conservation Methods: When preserving valuable or delicate artwork, consider using archival and conservation mounting techniques. These methods ensure the longevity of your art by using acid-free materials and reversible adhesives.

Optimal mounting safeguards your art and boosts its visual appeal. Comprehend matting’s role, choose the right method, and guarantee enduring presentation and preservation.

Framing Techniques: DIY vs. Professional Framing

When framing art, you can choose between DIY or professional framers. Each has pros and cons, and your decision hinges on preferences, budget, and desired perfection level.

DIY Framing:


  • Cost-Effective: Creating your own frames can save money. Frame kits and materials are available for purchase, reducing labor expenses.
  • Customization: You have full control over the design, materials, and the framing process. It’s a chance to get creative.
  • Convenience: Small and simple framing projects can be accomplished at home, saving time and travel.


  • Learning Curve: Mastering framing can be quite tricky. Achieving a professional finish might require some time and practice.
  • Equipment: To tackle the task effectively, equip yourself with essential tools like a mat cutter and a frame joining device. Keep in mind that these tools may be an upfront investment.
  • Risk of Mistakes: DIY framing may lead to misalignment, uneven matting, or improper sealing, potentially damaging your artwork.

Professional Framing:


  • Expertise: Professional framers are experienced and trained to handle various types of artwork. They know the best techniques and materials.
  • Quality Assurance: Your art is in safe hands. Professional framers use conservation-grade materials to protect your artwork from fading, acid, and other potential damages.
  • Custom Solutions: They can provide tailored advice on frame styles, matting, and mounting techniques to enhance your specific artwork.


  • Cost: Professional framing can be more expensive than the DIY approach. The cost depends on the complexity of the project and the materials used.
  • Lead Time: You’ll need to wait for your art to be framed by professionals, which may not be suitable for urgent display needs.
  • Less Personalization: While you have a say in the framing process, you might have less control over the minute details compared to DIY framing.

Final Thoughts: Tips for Achieving a Professional Finish

Whether you’re a DIY enthusiast or prefer professional framing, these tips will ensure your artwork looks stunning:

  • Measure precisely: Double-check all measurements before cutting materials.
  • Use top-quality materials: Invest in acid-free mats, UV-protective glass or acrylic, and sturdy frames to protect your art.
  • Keep it clean: Maintain a dust-free workspace to avoid debris inside the frame.
  • Secure with care: Properly mount and secure your artwork to prevent shifting or damage.
  • Preserve for the long term: Consider conservation framing techniques for valuable or sentimental pieces.
  • Handle with caution: Wear gloves or use clean, dry hands to avoid smudges and fingerprints on the artwork.
  • Hang like a pro: Choose the right hardware and ensure level hanging for a polished finish.

Remember, framing isn’t just about enhancing aesthetics; it’s about safeguarding and preserving your cherished art for years to come. Whether you take on the challenge yourself or seek expert assistance, these suggestions guarantee exceptional results.