About Frameworks Gallery

Frameworks Gallery is a locally-owned and family-operated frame shop that specializes in museum quality framing for art, photographs, portraits, memorabilia and much more.

Operating out of our gallery and custom framing workshop in Raleigh, NC., we strive to provide the best in picture framing—and customer service. Simply put, we stand behind our craftsmanship, products and people 100%. We are not happy with your hand framed treasure until you are, and that’s a standard our competitors have been trying to emulate for over 30 years.

Visit our website to learn even more! www.frameworksonline.com

Or give us a call 919-781-3118, we'd love to hear from you!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Salon Style Art Walls..How's it Hangin'?

A really hot trend right now is hanging artwork "Salon Style". This basically means putting a bunch of framed art on the same wall in a hodge-podge yet careful sort of way. While this technique makes a great statement when done correctly, it can be a daunting task to a newcomer. All you'll need is some imagination, some guts and an empty wall. In today's blog, I'd like to take a little mystery out of Salon Style art walls.
Hanging Art Work "Salon Style" is a great way to use all your little pieces that might not have another home to make a unique and bold statement.

The first thing you need to do is decide what you want to hang together and pick a theme. Do you want to do a mix of family photos, your child's artwork, vintage posters and prints, or maybe some small oil paintings that just don't seem to fit anywhere else? I would suggest having at least 5 pieces to hang, and always keep the number uneven. Something that would be fun if starting from scratch is searching attics, thrift stores and flea markets to find interesting vintage prints to hang in a collection.
In this photo the designer used a convex mirror as the center piece surrounded by great vintage finds. Using black frames in different styles keeps this wall looking eclectic yet refined.

Next, you want to make sure that all the pieces you are hanging have a similar theme. This could be in the style of the frame, or the color of the mat or just the colors in the artwork. It needs to be one thing that makes your eye connect all the pieces together. You might find that you'll need to do some re-framing of several prints to get a cohesive look. Make sure when you go to your frame shop you explain your over all plan and bring in the framed pieces you want to match.

All the framed pieces in the image above have a simple wood-tone frame. This keeps the look cohesive yet interesting.

In this image all the artwork is framed differently, but the white mats and black & white artwork keep it all connected.

Now you are finally ready to start punching holes in the wall! I recommend taking these next steps very slowly. The best way to insure you will like the finished product, without ruining your walls, is to cut out pieces of craft paper the size of each of your pieces framed art. Then start by taping the one that you want as the "centerpiece" on the wall. Work around this one, which is usually the largest piece until all the cut outs are on the wall and you are happy with the layout. Now, all you have to do is actually hang your framed art up.

With a little imagination and a lot of patience, you too can have a beautiful Salon Style Art Wall!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

The Art of the Wedding Gift

It's right around the corner...Wedding season. Any day now the invitations will be flooding your mailbox. With that said, in today's blog I wanted to give you some creative tips for gifts that the lovely bride and groom will cherish for years to come. These ideas are "borrowed" from an awesome guest blogger for Art That Fits, Meg Lange. They are too good not to share! Please read on to get inspired. And remember Frameworks is here for any of your art and framing needs!

Their wedding invitation framed makes a great gift for the newlyweds. They will appreciate that the memory of their big day is preserved, and also love that they have something to hang on their bare walls! The frame and fillet is from Larson-Juhl, the Chateaus collection.

If you are close to the bride and/or groom, another great gift idea is to frame a favorite photo from their wedding. Tell them to pick one of the professional photographs and email it to you. You can have it printed by the photographer and framed for them. Sometimes this is a long process, but it's totally worth the time when they see the finished product. The image above is my sister and brother-in-law from their wedding in Bald Head. The photo credit goes to the wonderful Sarah Whitmeyer! www.whitmeyerphotography.com It is framed in a classic way that will fit any decor with a double off-white mat and warm silver frame, from Larson-Juhl.

Give the gift of Artwork. If you think about it, this is a great gift idea because many newlywed couples are starting fresh and have bare walls. Artwork quickly warms up any room and makes a house a home. This idea might be a little tricky for some of you, but with a little research you could really wow your favorite couple. A good idea to ensure you get the style right for the couple is to match the art style to their china pattern. Here are some examples of how this works:

(above) The light and airy feel of this Kate Spade Dandy Lane china set compliments these paintings by Robin Zingone and Soraya Chemaly because of the clean lines and minimal color

(above) The couple who chooses this Lenox Chirp pattern china is playful and whimsical. You would want to purchase artwork for them that is joyful and fun. Like these paintings by Frank Gonzales and Thomaspaul

(above) The couple who chooses this Marchesa Palatial Garden Pattern is sure to be on the cutting edge of fashion and trends. You'll need to get them artwork that is bold and makes a statement, like these paintings by Sharyn Sowell or Johnny Taylor

Another way to give the gift of art to your favorite couple, is to give them a painting that symbolizes love and unity. Here are a few good examples of how this works without being too sappy.

Love Birds by Thomaspaul (this comes in several different colors and sizes!)

Hopefully this blog inspires you to think outside the box this wedding season! All art shown is available from the website Artaissance www.artthatfits.com and can be custom sized to fit any space and is printed on either artist paper or canvas.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Mat Board-Good, Better, Best

Almost all artwork on paper is framed using a decorative paper border between the art and the frame, known as Mat Board. Not only does mat board add color and an eye-pleasing visual border to your work, it can also protect it from damage over time by creating a small space between the artwork and the glass so the paper can breath. Many people do not know about the different types of Mat Boards offered in today's picture framing world, so in today's blog, I thought I would enlighten you on the Good, the Better and the Best types of mat boards for your artwork.

The Good: Decorative Mat Board. This type of board is made from wood pulp and is non-conservation quality. This just means that your artwork will not be protected from the damaging effects of the acid that is contained in these mat boards. We only recommend using decorative mat board (or paper mat board) for decorative framing, open ended reproduction artwork and commercial applications where price is an issue.

The Better: Conservation Mat Board. This type of board is made from Alpha-Cellulose, and is acid-free and lignin-free. This means that your artwork is protected from the damaging effects of acid. The surface of these mat boards are pigmented for fade and bleed resistance, so the shade of your mat board will not lighten over time. These mat boards are suitable for conservation framing and are recommended for fine art prints, limited editions, valuable documents and photography.

The Best: Cotton Rag Board. This board is made of 100% cotton fibers that are naturally acid and lignin-free as well as a renewable and environmentally friendly. Cotton Rag Board also meets museum standards for conservation as set by the F.A.T.G (or Fine Art Trade Guild). It is time tested and is guaranteed safe next to any type of artwork. This type of board is recommended for valuable works of original art on paper, items of historical importance, valuable documents and photographs and heirlooms that cannot be replaced.

Friday, February 18, 2011

"Big Box Stores" Vs. Custom Framers

I'm sure you've all done it, tried to save some money by buying a ready-made frame at a big box store and cramming your artwork in to it. Or taking your artwork to a "craft store" and having them frame it because you got a huge discount coupon in the mail. I'm not judging you, there is a time and place for a ready-made or inexpensive frame. It is a great way to display your snapshots, inexpensive posters & other things that have little monetary or sentimental value. But, please consider a custom framer for your more important prints, photos and artwork. I might be a bit of a frame snob, but it is so much more than that. At Frameworks, we have seen one too many precious pieces ruined because someone tried to save a dime. In this post I'd like to explain the difference between the Big Box Stores and Custom Framers. In other words, craft stores that pretend to be custom framers...I mean, how many custom framers do you see selling hot glue guns and fabric? Please read on to learn more about why your cherished pieces deserve the care and consideration of a custom frame shop, like Frameworks!

Price: Occasionally people are a little surprised by the cost of custom framing. I've seen the concerned look on many customer's faces when they are given a quote. I'd like to take a little mystery out of the price tag of custom framing. First of all, your framing is CUSTOM. It is done just for you. By a skilled framer, designer & fitter. All of this has a cost associated with it. Custom framers have a huge selection of mouldings and mats, because we order everything from our suppliers just for your job. Big box stores have a limited selection of moldings that they carry in volume, less selection for the customer, big profit for them.

Quality: As custom framers we care about what you are framing as much as you do. We have been in the same location with the same owner for 30 years. Our reputation rides on your work looking as good today as it did the day you brought it in. We only use the finest quality materials, including acid-free matting, conservation glass, and all wood mouldings. This might be over-kill for some projects, but our motto is "Things of quality have no fear of time." In other words, when you pay for quality you only cry once.

Discounts: A custom framer will occasionally run a special, or have a small discount coupon in a mailing, just to get some new business. But, I'm sure you've all seen the 50-75% off coupons these big box stores run weekly. My first thought is "Really?" how can you make any profit when you are giving that kind of a discount. The answer is simple. These stores have high prices and steep discounts. While custom framers have reasonable prices and reasonable discounts. I'd like to give you a real life example of how these coupons are misleading. We recently had a customer come in our shop who had been to a "craft store" to get her framing done. After selecting her choices and getting a quote, she wasn't quite happy with her selection and decided to try a custom framer. She came in to our store just get an idea of cost, because she wanted it to look nice, but was on a budget. After choosing a beautiful frame and mat for her project, we gave her a quote. (I should mention that we had no idea what she was quoted at the "craft store".) To her surprise our price was over $100 less that the big box store, and that was with a 60% off coupon!
Shop Locally: Studies show that when you buy from an independent, locally owned business, rather than a nationally owned business, significantly more of your money is used to make purchases from other local businesses, service providers and farms continuing to strengthen the economic base of the community. Visit Shop Local Raleigh to learn more or to get involved!

This is an example of what can happen to your artwork if it's not framed properly. At Frameworks we only use conservation materials to protect your art for generations to come!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

When to Use Museum Glass vs. Conservation Glass or Regular Glass:

We often get the question, "What type of glass should I use"? And although all circumstances are different, we always recommend at least a UV filtering, Conservation glass. Many of today's homes are using CFL's which contain UV rays, which means even if your artwork is not in direct sunlight, it could still be getting UV rays which cause sensitive objects to permanently fade over time. If reflection is a problem, Museum Glass is the way to go.

Here are the top reasons to use Museum Glass:
  • For virtually invisible glazing that will enhance colors, brightness and contrast levels of all types of artwork, even posters
  • For protecting valued diplomas or irreplaceable artwork against damage and fading caused by UV light
  • Ideal for framing applications, including shadow boxes, multiple mat or deep framing project
  • Artaissance / ArtThatFits Art Tips: Custom sizing art to fit your space.

    From: ArtThatFits | August 21, 200

    Ever find the perfect piece of art for your home, but it wasn't the right size for the space you need?

    With Artaissance (www.ArtThatFits.com) you never need to worry about that again! Through Artaissance'e unique, interactive online gallery experience, you actually have the ability to custom size any Artaissance art image to fit the dimensions of your space.

    With more than 3,300 exclusive images by more than 150 acclaimed artists, Artaissance opens the online retail door to all art lovers. Each art image is custom sizeable, so customers may size an artwork to fit in a tiny poweder room nook, or on a large wall of their vaulted-ceiling living room. Artaissance is sure to be the perfect fot.

    These custom giclee reproductions are also available on the customer's choice of either conservation-quality paper or canvas and is available in a range of prices from as little as $100 to $1,000, depending on final, selected image size.

    Welcome to the Frameworks Blog!

    We decided to start this blog for all of you out there who might feel that custom framing is a daunting task. "What frame should I choose?" "How much will it cost?" "Will I like the finished product?" are all questions that the first time framing customer asks. They are all legitimate questions! Here at Frameworks we want you to feel like you are in control, but we also want you to feel like you are making the best choices for your particular project. We have been in business for over 30 years, and we want you to feel like all the choices you make when selecting your custom framing are easier than choosing what to have for lunch. We are here to guide you through this process, making sure the whole time you are completely comfortable with every decision from the frame, to the mats, to the glass, and most importantly the price...(we'll get into that later!).

    Because we want you to be completely comfortable with your design, we are now utilizing a software called FrameVue, that helps customers see the finished product, before any work is actually done. It is great for anyone who can't quite envision a completed custom frame job.

    Here is an example of a finished FrameVue project