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How To Choose the Right Frame

Jul 27, 2017 | Guides | 0 comments

So you’ve settled for a poster that you love – great! But what about the frame?

Few things are as exciting as acquiring a new art piece for your home. But whether it’s a Mona Lisa or a custom map poster, art isn’t complete until it’s been framed. Only then can it be hung on your wall. This raises an important question, namely: how to choose the right frame?

This guide will cover how to choose the right frame for art in general, but focus will be put on how to frame your custom map poster or a regular pre-designed map poster.

Choosing the right frame can be divided into two questions, which both play a major role in choosing the right frame. The two questions that you should ask yourself are what you’re framing and where it’s going.

Before we start, I want to point out that there are no definite rules to choosing the perfect frame, of course, but it can still be a good idea to have some options in mind when it’s time to choose.

With that being said, let’s get going and cover how to choose the right frame!

Question 1: What are you framing?

Frames come in many shapes and styles. Some are traditional and ornate, while others are modern and simple. It’s therefore important to know what you’re framing, so that you can match it with the right frame.

  1. Subject and style. The subject and style of your art piece is, of course, an important factor to consider. Generally speaking, modern art often goes well with simple and clean frames, while ornate frames do a better job at complementing more traditional pieces. Modern art – or a map poster for that matter – can also look neat without a frame. However, keep in mind that an unframed art piece easily gets damaged.
  2. Size. Size matters. The size of the frame needs to be set in relation to the size of the art work itself. The ground rule is that the frame should not overpower nor underpower the work of art. Makes sense? However, in rare cases, an oversized frame may look very cool with a smaller piece of art. To go a little crazy with the frame size can certainly work, but it’s high risk, high reward. If you want something safer, opt for a smaller frame with an equally small mat.
  3. Color. When it comes to color you have a few options to consider. The first option is to get a frame in the same color as the print. For instance, a black and white poster would look good with a clean frame in black or white. As a matter of fact, most prints would look good with a black or white frame, so that’s a bulletproof choice. The second option is to choose a frame in a complementing color. The third option is to go for an unexpected color choice that will grab the observer’s attention.

how to choose the right frame - art poster with 4 frame options

An art poster with four framing options (from Real Simple):
1. A color from the poster, 2. Natural Wood, 3. Wide white wood and 4. Narrow Black Metal

Question 2: Where is it going?

  1. The room. The room itself plays a big role when it comes to selecting the right frame. Would you frame an art piece differently depending on where it was supposed to hang, say in a school building or a British pub? I don’t know, but hopefully you would. If not, it’s time to start considering the room in which it will hang.
  2. Room decor. Room decor is closely related to the room itself. If a style dominates a room, any frame should try to amplify this style. However, I’m a big fan of ornate gold frames in a room with a modern and minimalistic style (and vice versa), so don’t be afraid to break the rules.
  3. The wall (assuming that it will hang on a wall). What color is the wall? Not surprisingly, the frame needs to work well with the wall surrounding it.
  4. Alone vs Gallery wall. Will the artwork hang on its own or will it be part of a gallery wall? Grouped artworks look best when they are framed in a wild variety or with a consistent theme. Choose one of the two and stick to it. For single pieces, the frame is perhaps of even greater importance as it will get all the attention, meaning that you shouldn’t choose a frame on random.

Plan to create a gallery wall? Then read on our guide on How To Build a Gallery Wall and learn everything you need to know about creating your own gallery wall.

That’s it guys! Now you know what to consider when choosing the perfect frame for your newly acquired art piece. Got any more tips? Please let us know in the comments.

Where to get frames?

Below are some places that we recommend for getting affordable frames:

  1. IKEA: buy your frames from the undisputed furniture king at prices you’ll love. Depending on where you live, they’ll sell frames measured in inches or centimeters. Both of which fit our posters.
  2. Amazon: if Amazon doesn’t have what you’re looking for, then you’re out of luck. It might take some time for you to find a frame that you like, but once you do, make sure to enjoy Amazon’s low prices and fast shipping.
  3. Your choice: where do you buy your frames? Please let us know in the comments.