What types of picture frames are there?

Bored of ordinary daily trifles, lacking in passion, you may be looking for something to light up this dull life. At this time, some works of art may be of great help. When it comes to art, anything in life could be endowed with aesthetic values if redone properly or perceived from another view. We will take picture frames as an example here.

Frame could be regarded as an extremely normal object in daily life, carrying photos of great memories. However, you could also find it a great design to complement any decors. They are great for displaying meaningful photographs, but with many new crafts and styles available today, they could be considered as great design elements. We will mainly talk about various types of picture frames popular nowadays, from materials to forms and then to applications, so that you might get some clues of artifying your life.


Assorted by Material

A wide range of frame materials are available but some of them are common and especially popular among others: Wooden picture frames, Metallic and Plastic frames. They all have their own distinguishing features, pros and cons, but when used correctly, they would make great amplification to the overall presentation of your artwork.


Wooden Picture Frame

Wooden Picture Frames

When it comes to photo frames, a variety of wooden picture frames absolutely become the top one in our mind, for it might be the traditional type with relatively the longest history. As a natural material, wood offers an extra warm feeling. Ranging in color from light to dark depending on the woods and the finish used, wood frames give you plenty of choices while decorating your images. For example, pictures with warmer tones, like red or orange, look better with darker frames made of woods like mahogany and walnut. While photos in cooler tones, such as blues, greens and lavender, pair best with lighter woods like oak, ash and pine.

In most cases, wooden picture frames are always associated with handmade crafts. Certainly, it’s true, as wood material is really easy to shape into different styles. What’s more, frames made of particular woods could produce special fragrance, enhancing the value of art to a higher level. These facts, in no doubt, add a sparkle to wooden frames.
However, none is perfect. Wooden picture frame also has its enemy--Humidity. Therefore, it may need extra care when preserved.


Metallic Picture Frame

Metallic frames, another type of commonly used frames, provide a modern, trendy and industrial vibe, often seen strong, durable and practical. Designed simply, they lift a photo’s coloring, making it more vibrant and eye-catching. Due to its clear appearance, metallic picture frames work well for artistic photos, stunning modern landscapes and wedding photos, as they could highlight what has been displayed in their center. Family portraits, however, may look better in a handmade wooden frame for the heartwarming feeling.

Metallic colors such as gold and silver are used while producing the frames, which match well with most types of photos. Black and white photos also pair well with metallic frames, as they provide a contrasting color to the photograph itself and accord with the modern vibe. However, we have to admit that its manufacturing process leaves a striking trace of industry that someone may mind. What’s more, sometimes its sharp edge does require extra attention.


Plastic Picture Frame

Plastic Picture Frames

One last popular material in producing frames is Plastic, which always includes cost-effective, light and safe as its features. Single colors are often used while making plastic frames. Placing your photo in a solid-colored frame, like black or white, can truly accentuate the beauty when used appropriately.

Black frames offer an elegant, formal look, highlighting the darker features in your photo and acting as a contrast to lighter ones. While white frames tend to be more casual and eclectic in nature, tending to make the darkness in photos stand out, and the light hues to blend into the background. Both black and white frames carry a modern and minimalist feel. Therefore, plastic frames often provide an artistic, stylish vibe, especially while decorating a gallery wall.

One needs to be noticed is that the production of plastic frames is often mass and comparatively simple, and due to the features of plastic material, instead of as durable as metallic frames, they are relatively delicate, so be careful when you try to bend them.


Assorted by Form

Besides various raw materials, frames can also be classified by forms. Apart from standard frames, with the development of modern technology and the variety of the populace's aesthetic, more forms of frame like digital frame and collage frame are coming out successively.


Standard Frame

Standard Frames are usually in particular sizes, allowing them to fit into almost any setting. This means that they’re a great choice no matter if you’re trying to frame a picture on your desk at work or hanging something more personal in the comfort of your own home. They come in a variety of styles but they tend to stick to fit with images in fixed sizes like: 3x3 inches/4x6 inches/ 5x7 inches.

And for displaying, there are still plenty of options as to where you can put them. Usually a standard frame will come with an extra piece of foot on the backboard to help you prop the frame up on the table, and two holes to help you hang the frame on the wall. In this case, standard frames are doing fairly well in meeting most decorating needs.


Collage Frame

A collage frame is a type of frame which uses various materials to create a unique design. Generally, a collage frame consists of a combination of photos and other memorabilia adhered to the sides or back of the frame. These pieces are usually displayed randomly  in order to create a sense of chaos. This trend began around the 1990s when people went after something more interesting than the black and white strips around their picture frames.

In addition, sometimes when you need to display more than one photo or piece of art, you can also consider collage frames. As they have multiple spaces for pictures, helping give you a template to create a collage of all your favorite pictures to display on the wall.
Another advantage of this framing is it’s an inexpensive and easy way to change your photo display by just switching out the picture. However, the downside is that it may be difficult to find frames with different shapes or finishes in stores. At the same time, the ability of arranging structures is relatively necessary for the designers.


Digital Frame

Like many other things newly appearing in our life, picture frames also benefit from rapid  technological progress. At this time, digital frames come into being. These frames can work in a few different ways. Some allow you to upload your photos to share with your friends while others call for a memory card from a camera containing the photos you want to preserve for a long time.

As a decorative picture frame, digital frames help you display as many photos as possible in limited space, saving both resources and money. Meanwhile, it can also be used as gifts, some of which even accompany pleasant music, normally for weddings and birthdays. Some may be concerned that it’s comparatively expensive among frames, but the good news is that this technology has been more common and affordable recently. Thus the only problem is that it still requires electricity after all, which sets limits to its application scenarios.


Assorted by Application

Speaking of the most vital role picture frames play, its contribution to Interior Design must not be ignored. They could give a remarkable look to any existing space, as well as showcase precious memories , express your artistic talent and remind you of old day's glory.


Interior Decoration

Frame Gallery Wall

Among ways of refreshing your space, no matter for living rooms, bed rooms or office, working on walls never goes wrong. There are lots of possibilities to turn these empty walls into more admirable parts of your place. A few thoughtfully handpicked additions like paints, portraits and photos make the wall look like an excellent work of an expert interior designer.

Tabletop frames are also an important element in home embellishments. These timeless artworks could be placed on the table with the help of stands on the back, and can also be hung on the wall, turning the boring room into a lively space.


Display Usage

There are also types of frames aiming at displaying a piece as a design focal point of a room or a particular place like a museum. These pieces could be documents like certificates, diplomas, letters of recommendation, which remind you of former glories; they can also be posters of someone you admire, prized art prints or photography you collected, just like the installations in museums. The design of this kind of frames often makes it easy to remove paper from the back and insert pictures into the frame, and makes people focus more on the artworks inside with the help of a simple styled frame.


Customized Frames

Aside from regular retail frames, you can certainly have customized frames made in accordance with your desires. They are more costly but the work and quality will be guaranteed, and you will get the unique frame of your own.

You could also customize picture frames by your own, or work with a craftsman to create something with heirloom quality which could be made as family treasures for future generations. Engraving is often used while customizing frames by oneself. You can engrave anything including names, quotes, coordinates, sayings.You could also add some ornaments like flowers, branches, leaves and shells to decorate your own frame. All in all, anyone can make something suits their needs.

Tips for choosing a proper picture frame

With so many types of frame to choose from, you might be at a loss in the beginning. Here are some tips to help you before make the final decision:
  1. Don’t pay too much attention to matching specific colors in your photo to the frame color. Instead, consider the overall tone of the image when selecting the frames.
  2. Matching a frame to the existing design is more important than matching a color in your image to the frame itself.
  3. To help your artwork stand out, ensure your frame color isn’t too similar to your wall color.
  4. Make sure what you want to emphasize more in decorating: Picture inside or Frame itself.

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