If you ever wondered how to frame artwork like a Pro, then you’re in luck! I’ve been meaning to do a ‘how to guide’ for a little while, and never quite got to do it. Until now. That just happened by a chance work art admin day! I shared a video on Instagram earlier today, to accompany it, here’s my ‘how-to guide’ on framing an artwork.
What you need (the ingredients -erm equipments!)
Foam mount board
White card (to use as backing paper)
Stanley knife (always use safety precautions when using sharp tools)
Glue (I used Gorilla Glue, you can use what’s available to you)
Water (necessary to help the glue bond & be effective)
Sponge (you can use water in a spray bottle)
Box frame (I used a 15x15cm frame)
Artwork / print / photo etc…you get the idea 🙂
Brown paper tape / gummed paper
Something to clean the glass (in the frame); I used a window & glass cleaner and microfibre cloth to wipe it down with.
And a selection of heavy books; (if you don’t have a studio space with the tools like a clamp to hold the glued surfaces together).
Watch the instagram reel for more info (scroll down to view).
The How-to frame artwork like a Pro bit
First and foremost, make sure you have everything you need within arms reach. And by that I mean easily to get to, so you do not go on a hunting spree trying to find that one tool you know you have somewhere, but cannot quite find. *scratches head moment*. I’ve been there, done that and worn the T-Shirt.
Once you have everything, get that ruler and pencil out, it’s time for measuring. Measure the artwork and note down the dimensions on a piece of paper. The foam mount board you will be using will need to be smaller than the artwork. For example, my artwork was 10x10cm and the foam mount I cut was 7x7cm. Please note: when using a Stanley knife, always take precautions and ensure safety measures are in place at all times. Always cut on top of a cutting board. It is advised that young people seek the help from an adult at all times.
To stick the foam board to the artwork: I used an acid-free glue which bonds most surfaces together – particularly foam mount, card and wood – which is what I needed it for. The glue’s bonding ability is activated by water, and so, with the aid of a sponge, I dampened the foam mount with water. Then on the back of the artwork, in a small square I spread on the glue (a thin layer). I then placed the foam mount (damp side down) onto the glued surface. With the artwork facing down, and the foam mount on top, I placed it on a flat surface and put a couple of heavy books on top to weight it down. Then waited 1-2 hours for the bonding to take place.
Please note: If you do not want your artwork to be permanently glued to a surface, then seek a professional framer who can place your artwork in a specially designed boxed frame for your artwork. This guide is for utilising box frames you can purchase from stores like Hobbycraft and The Works
Whilst waiting for that to bond, take the white card and place it under the backing board of the frame. Draw around the board with the pencil, then using the Stanley knife, cut out a square shape. This will form the white backdrop for the artwork as well as provide a sturdy backing for the artwork to sit on.
Once the foam board and artwork has bonded, repeat the above steps of gluing, this time glue the mount board to the white card. Whilst the glue is malleable make sure you measure the spaces around the artwork so it’s centred and looks good. As an extra precaution, I placed the frame onto the positioned artwork to see how it looks in it. Once happy, I lifted the frame and placed the books onto the artwork so the two surfaces bonds under it’s weight.
I highly recommend you affixing the white card to the backboard of the frame if you are using a thin card so it gives it extra support and strength.
Frame artwork like a Pro!
The hard graft is nearly over – to give you some context, I framed 6 artworks in one day, so doing just one is a doddle!
Once your artwork has bonded to the card take the frame and carefully remove the glass. Clean both sides of the glass, including the edges with a glass cleaner ensuring there’s not streaks or smudging. I used a microfibre cloth to wipe down the surface area. Place the glass back in the frame, along with any other parts of the framing you took out to reach the glass. Once they’re all in place, fit the artwork into the frame and place the back of the frame on top and secure it all in place.
Take a look and see if the artwork is centered, right-side up and looks secure. If yes, grab your brown paper tape / gummed paper and secure the edges of the frame so it looks neat and tidy – the finishing touches like a Pro! (It’s all the the details. 😉)
There you have it. My how to frame artwork like a Pro guide. I do hope you found this useful!
Do let me know in the comments how you get on with framing your artwork. If there’s any other know-how tips you would like me to share, let me know!
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The artwork in this article is part of the Energy Trails Series, which you can buy in the shop! Alternatively, I’ll be at The Erith Exchange this Sunday, do pop by and say hello if you’re in the area. 🙂
In the meantime, have a most beautiful day. 🙂