If you’re not sure what style of frame to use for your original artwork or when framing collectibles, look to the artwork itself for guidance. A sophisticated wooden frame of walnut, mahogany or even gold leaf works well for artwork with a classical theme. For more abstract style paintings, a sleek metal frame gives it that modern edgy look. Paintings that combine more than one style of art can benefit from transitional frames that incorporate elements from contemporary and traditional frames. Just like each piece of artwork is unique, each frame is unique and has its own profile. Take the time to work with a professional until you find the ideal fit that gives the artwork the ability to hang in any space. Keep in mind that when framing collectibles or original pieces should never compete with the texture or colors of the artwork as this can undermine the beauty of both frame and art.
Original artwork created on paper such as charcoal drawings, pastel sketches and watercolor paintings require special consideration when mounting because the surface material is more delicate than thick artist canvas. An expert in custom framing knows that valuable paper artwork requires conservation mounting before framing so that the piece has proper support while still being removable from the frame structure without risk of damage or visible signs that it had a frame. Paper artwork and in fact all artwork, requires the use of acid-free materials and this includes matting, backing and mounting. To prevent fading, glass or plastic glazing should have ultraviolet protection and there should be a spacer between the glass and artwork to prevent discoloration.
Using matting that’s a neutral color adds a sharp finish to original artwork without distraction from the colors and textures of the piece. However, if you want to introduce an accent color that enhances the piece, a double mat with the colored mat beneath the neutral mat can subtly introduce some color to the framing. Generally, the mat and frame should be different widths.