The Difference a Frame Can Make

Artwork which is hung on walls is typically framed. The right frame can enhance a piece of artwork while one chosen poorly can actually detract from the beauty of the piece. Choosing a frame is more than simply picking one that fits – it's about choosing one with the perfect width, color and style to accent your piece and show it off at its best.

How Frames Affect Art

Art framing has an impact on a piece in a few different ways. The first is if the frame was the original frame the piece was put in. A painting from the early 19th century, for example, would probably have been framed with a wide frame that included some sort of embellishment. These frames were popular at the time and are considered a part of the artwork itself. Over time, many of these frames have deteriorated and were eventually replaced but paintings in their original framework are considered highly collectible since they are complete as they were originally bought and sold.

When older frames break or become too distressed, some owners choose to have the frame remade in its original style instead of opting for a new more modern look. New frames, when made well, can help to retain most – but not all – of the original piece's value. Owners who want to retain as much of the original value as possible should investigate their options to have the original frame refurbished instead of replacing it completely.

Auction Value vs Personal Value

The effect framing has on a piece goes beyond simply retaining its value for auction or later private sale. Choosing the right frame also accents the piece itself. A small painting with a very thin frame, for example, may get lost on a wall. Giving smaller pieces wider frames or matting can help draw a person's attention to the piece. Conversely, a larger piece with a boldly colored or wide frame and matting can actually detract from the piece itself.

Frames can also have personal value and a picture or piece of artwork which hung in a specific frame may become valuable personally even if the frame isn't ideal in terms of aesthetics. Ultimately, the frame and the artwork will hang in your home so it should be something you find pleasing. If that means resurrecting the same frame your Aunt Mildred used to hang your first painting, then so be it.

Choosing the right frame can have a huge impact on your artwork. Frames which allow the piece to shine without needlessly drawing the viewer's attention away can make or break a piece. To get the best idea for what a frame can do, take your piece into a framing shop to hold it against specific frame moldings. This way you can see firsthand the difference between a thin and thick frame, or one with clean lines instead of embellishments. Taking the time to choose the right frame can boost the way the piece looks in your home as well as its overall value.

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Comments 4 comments

Faith Reaper profile image

Faith Reaper 2 years ago from southern USA

Excellent hub here. Frames do make a huge different, well, the right frame does, for one's art or whatever it is one wishes to showcase. I remember I looked for the longest time to frame a print by my sister's in-laws' brother. When I saw it, I just knew it was the one.

Up and more and sharing.


Faith Reaper

Better Yourself profile image

Better Yourself 2 years ago from North Carolina Author

Thanks again Faith!! I couldn't agree more, it takes me time to find the right frames as well. I get an idea in my head of what will look best with a picture or piece of art and until I find what fits my vision I just keep looking!

skye2day profile image

skye2day 2 years ago from Rocky Mountains

better yourself. Well this came in at a handy time. My daughter (an artist) gave me a watercolor she painted and I am having a heck of a time finding a frame. I have paid for framing and you are right it can be very expensive. She is worth it but the bucks are not there. I am bookmarking your hub to follow the links. I like creative. I may make my own. Hugs Galore.

Better Yourself profile image

Better Yourself 2 years ago from North Carolina Author

Thanks skye2day! So glad the hub was helpful :) If you make your own you could do a Hub showcasing your handy work and How To - would love to see the finished piece framed!

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