The Process of Getting Your Special Piece Framed

What you can expect to happen when you bring your art or memorabilia to Finer Frames.

If you haven’t had anything framed before it can be a daunting experience, so much choice! I want this to look really good but where do I begin?

We will greet you and ask "how can we help you?"

You might have a print or a certificate, painting or a football jersey, embroidery or canvas or photos that you need framed. You name it we can frame it. Everything from a Venetian mask, to a set of collectors cards to a tiny photo or even garden tools! It may be something you need done today for a present or a funeral, or something that has been sitting under the bed for years!

Depending on what you want to achieve, the choice of mats and mouldings for your frame can be a quick and easy process or it can take some time to choose exactly the right combination that suits your taste and the artwork. 

Here are a few things that will help you understand the process and allow you to get the best result from your framing experience.

We are here to achieve the very best results.

Your piece inevitably ends up on the big table where it is spread out and we may have to weigh it down at the corners, especially if it has been rolled up to travel!

We will measure the artwork and usually ask the story of the piece. Besides just being interesting for us… there are some amazing stories…… it tells us a few things for example how old it is and its family history.  In the case of a restoration, questions are quite specific about provenance, valuations etc.

We look at the art to assess all sorts of things, is it an oil, acrylic, watercolour, pastel, photo, print or needlework. Each of these have specific framing needs. We also look at the condition of the piece and will point out any faults or areas that may need TLC before framing. Sometimes these small things can be repaired or minimised and we will offer that service if necessary. 

Mats, Mouldings and Glazing!

We then ask you if you have a particular style in mind for your framing. We have conveniently divided our moulding samples into broad styles, for example rustic, provincial, urban, metallics, Hollywood glam....... All frame shops have mat corner samples and moulding corner samples that allow you to visualise the finished frame. 

The mats and mouldings are there for you to play with (as well as us). Slide back the doors, look at the mouldings and take them off the wall (just pull - they are held in place with velcro dots). We look at colours and textures in the piece and show you combinations of mat and mouldings to make your work look its very best. Sometimes people find it very hard to visualise what the final piece will look like and decisions are difficult. You may have to put some trust in your framer’s experience, but we are here to help you achieve a beautiful result.

Often people ask for a black moulding and white mat, whilst this combination can look awesome on some things it really detracts from others. Try to be open with your look but tell us if you want to match existing décor.

"Do I need a mat?"

Most likely yes! Mats are there for both looks and protective reasons. We will suggest appropriate types of mats for each piece, from Museum grade cotton rag mats to décor mats. A mat enhances and supports the piece and stops it from sticking to the glass. We can cut mats in all sorts of shapes and with all sorts of decorations. 


After the choice of frames and mats is agreed upon, we come to glazing choices. Sometimes people ask “Why do I need glazing at all?“ Glass or acrylic glazing is the window on your work, keeps it protected from environmental pollutants (and pests) and holds the whole piece together between the backing and the mat inside the frame.

There are quite a few choices for glazing, ranging from plain glass to museum grade acrylic. Some glass is ultra-clear and contains ultra violet protective filters. If your piece is very large, or is in a high traffic area accessible to public, acrylic will be suggested.  It is lighter and safer than window glass. Styrene plastics found in some discount store frames yellow with age and off-gas harmful chemicals. It is not sold at Finer Frames.

Time Frame 

The process of framing can take an hour to three weeks or more. If it is just a mat you need cut we can usually cut a mat on our CNC cutter within a few minutes. Mostly the framing process takes 10 days to 15 working days. We ask for a deposit and order the frames and mouldings needed. We then cut everything and put all the components together to make your unique piece.

You are more than welcome to come into the workshop and see how and where everything is done

We work with you to protect and enhance your piece and make it look the best it can look, on all budgets.