How to choose the best frame for your art piece?

Feb 12, 2020Design tips

Do you find it difficult to choose the frames that will enhance your interior and the art you love?

Do you know how to guide your framer so that he/she makes what you really want?

The frame around a work of art is the finishing touch, the element that completes and elevates a painting, presenting it to the viewer in its best possible light. I am sure you have been sometimes disappointed with the way your art has been hung or maybe you just don’t hang it because you aren’t sure about the framing.

I consider the frame the gift of the painter so I have paid attention to it. I thought you might be interested to know how I go about.

Here are five key questions and some pictures to visualize what I am talking about.

1. Do you need a frame?

I’ll let you in on a secret: Not every work of art needs to be framed. For stretched on a canvas pieces, framing is completely optional. The term stretched on canvas refers to canvas stapled on thick stretcher bars and secured to the sides or the back  of those bars.

However, for work on paper, it is mandatory to have a protection whether a glass or plexiglass.

2. How do you frame the artwork?

Do I want a matt or not? This is the first question I ask myself.

The matt, also called passe partout, is a cardboard cut out in the middle and placed in your picture frame between the picture and the glass. The passepartout is available in different shapes and colours.

It usually enhances the subject by placing it in the center of a plain space in a way that keeps the art piece flat and tight.

Here are some examples of matts. You can use one matt or several matts in layers:

A. Art pieces with a single or a double matt

B. Art pieces without a matt

You may want to have a frame with the piece placed in the center but you want to keep it floating inside the frame.

I find that a piece without a matt is very contemporary and stylish, especially for large art pieces. 

3. How do you place the artwork related to the edge of the frame?  

I am sure you have already figured out the next question if you go without the matt.

Do I want space around the piece? 

This question also depends on two factors:

1. How large is the piece?

2. Where will it be hung?

For example, I tend to think that small pieces deserve space around them if they are placed on a larger wall. But I like them small when they are displayed with other pieces.

A. On the edge of the frame (when it is without a matt of course)

B. With a space between the edge of the frame (possible with or without matt)

4. How do you place the artwork related to the glass protection?

Now is the time to decide where the piece will be placed relative to the glass. In other words, whether you want a frame with depth or not. If I go for a frame with depth, the question is:

Is the piece placed on the back side of the frame or on the front side of the frame, i.e. close to the glass?

A. Back of the frame

B. Front of the frame, close to the glass

5. What kind of frame?

Very modern

I hope these questions and answers help you with finding the right frames for the pieces you love.

Maybe you have already an idea about the room(s) you want to decorate.

Or maybe you want to buy more art.

In any case, I can help you with both projects!  

Just send me a simple photo of the room you are thinking of and the pieces you like, I can do a photomontage of piece in your interior. Here is the link with an example

Or you can just contact me at 

It will be a lot of fun for me to work with you! 


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