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New Series Spotlight – Gun Metal Picture Frames

A few months back we introduced our brand-new Chalked Series. As of today, our Chalked series is now available and ready to be purchased. In addition to the launch of Chalked, we are also launching a second brand new series called Gun Metal.

Despite the name Gun Metal, this is not a brand-new series that we’re adding to our Metal Line. This new series comes in 3 unique profiles in wood. All of which feature the cutting-edge wood frame color: Gun metal. This series is great for a muted metallic look for any picture that you might want to put in them. They would look great for those beautiful black and white wedding or event photos. Gun Metal comes in three profiles: Narrow, Divet, and Wide.

Gun Metal Divet
Divet
Gun Metal Flat
Narrow
Gun Metal Wide
Wide

Just like all of our other frames, Our New Gun Metal series is American-made in our warehouse in Cincinnati, Ohio. Buying from Frame USA means supporting an American Company and getting the best quality products! Stay tuned for more new series and great blog posts!

 

How To Clean Frames

How To Clean Picture Frames

If you’re a human chances are your home sometimes gets a little dusty and dirty. It’s easy to dust and clean most parts of your home, but what is the best way to clean those precious frames that protect your memories and artwork? We’re here to help you out. The outside of the frame will more often than not be the only thing that you need to clean. Once your frame is hanging up the inside of the frame will be protected from splatters, spills, dust and dirt. All you need is a soft cloth to wipe down the frame itself. We recommend a microfiber cloth to wipe down the outside of the frame. The benefits of the microfiber cloth is that the fibers will attract the dust and the dirt better and quicker than just a plain old kitchen or bath towel.

Once the outside of the frame is back to its original glory, you might now notice that the styrene or glass, is less than sparkling. The first thing you have to determine is whether or not the frame in question has styrene or glass, as the cleaning methods are vastly different.

If you have purchased a Frame USA  standard size or custom frame that is 11×14 or smaller (Including 12×12) your frame will have arrived with glass. If the frame is a standard size or custom frame that is 11×17 and larger they will come with Styrene, a form of Plexi-Glass. In case your frame was created using our Design A Frame, Acrylic is an option for you to choose from. Acrylic, similar to styrene, is a thicker, more durable plexi-glass.

So now that you’ve got a good understanding on what your frame has, it’s time to clean!

How to clean Glass:

Glass is probably the easiest to clean as it has the most in common with windows in your household. All you need to clean glass on your picture frames is a soft cloth and regular old glass cleaner. While chances are that the dirt and dust is just on the outside of the frame, In the event that your frame has arrived to you a little dusty or you want to be extra sure your piece sparkles, you should carefully remove the glass and clean it. Our recommendation is to make sure you’re a safe distance away from your artwork before spraying down the glass so as to not harm it.

How to clean Styrene or Acrylic:

Styrene and acrylic is slightly trickier to clean. If your styrene looks slightly cloudy, check to make sure that you have removed the protective film from both sides. We want to protect your styrene from scratches in transient so it will always ship with this film. Our acrylic is a little easier to detect since its shipped with a bright blue film.

 

If you have removed the film, and your styrene or acrylic is still dirty, our best recommendation is to clean it using a clean microfiber cloth and warm water. This will allow any static packing material or dust to be wiped away. DO NOT use a solvent cleaner like you did with your glass. The components of the cleaner will actually cause it to disintegrate over time.

Picture Frame Supplies
Glass & Plastic Cleaner

If you are wanting a magic product that will clean all three glazing options and much more with ease, just call us your fairy god framers as we have a Glass and Plastic cleaner that will make your life incredible easy!

We hope that these tips have helped your frames get as clean as can be. If you have a picture frame, custom framing, home decor, or company question leave them in the comments, or reach out to us on Facebook or Instagram!

How to Frame a Puzzle — 6 Tips From an Expert Framer

Some framing projects are fairly easy, involving 2 steps — put art in frame, hang frame on wall. There are some projects however that require a bit more skill. We like our customers to be well informed so we went to the people that know those projects the best — our talented custom framing team in our retail store.

This team not only completes the requests of our local customers, but they are also the ones who turn your imagined Design a Frame orders into reality!

This team has had the opportunity to work with a lot of creative materials. One of the most unique products, also happens to be one of the trickiest for the everyday person to frame. We’re talking about America’s favorite rainy-day activity — Puzzles!

There is nothing worse than spending weeks completing a 1000+ piece puzzle to just take it apart. That’s where we come in! Laurie, who has been on our custom framing team since December of 2016, has compiled 6 tips to help turn that loved puzzle into your home’s decor.
­­
Framed Puzzle of Sea Creatures

Securing your puzzle

Since puzzles by definition include multiple pieces the first task when framing it is securing it:

  1. There is puzzle glue that can be used to permanently keep a puzzle together.  By gluing it, it makes it easier to frame.  Be sure to give the puzzle plenty of time to dry properly before inserting it into a frame.
  2. When you pour the glue over top of the completed puzzle, it can be a little messy. Use a piece of cardboard to spread it out but make sure to have something underneath to catch the excess glue.  But be careful that you don’t glue your underneath board to the puzzle itself!

Not interested in permanently altering your puzzle? Here’s Laurie’s tip:

  1. If you decide not to glue the puzzle together, use real glass in front of your puzzle instead of acrylic or flexible plastic called Styrene.  This allows you to hold the puzzle together tighter.

Framing your puzzle

One of our customers favorite things about us is that we offer a wide variety of frames to choose from. Whether your décor is comprised of wood, or you have more of an industrial vibe with metal, we have tons of options.

  1. When you are going through the many options, choose a frame that will accent the puzzle

Not sure what size frame would be the best for your puzzle? All you have to do is measure your puzzle and go from there!

  1. Some puzzles will fit into a standard size frame; for example, a 16×20 frame or 18×24 frame. Others will need to be put into a custom size frame.

No matter what size, standard or custom, we can make your dreams come true. All of our series are offered in 32 standard sizes and the ability to be made into custom sizes!

Since this puzzle is meant to be part of your home décor, there is a very real possibility that you have a frame size already in mind for your space, regardless if your puzzle will fit. Here’s Laurie’s tip to make it work:

  1. You can use a custom cut mat board to make it fit into a standard size frame.  For example, if the puzzle is 16×22, you would have a 1 inch mat around the puzzle to fit it into an 18×24 frame.

We hope that these tips help you turn your rainy day activity into a beautiful home décor. Share with us your finished puzzles framed with Frame USA Frames!

Happy Birthday America!

Being a manufacturer of American made picture frames, we at Frame USA especially love days like today!  July 4th is widely celebrated all throughout the United States. Many view today as “yes I get the day off work!”  But being a company who focuses on buying and producing everything we do around Made in the USA products, it is more than that to us.  We celebrate our freedoms today and every day, and are proud to offer you picture frames that are 100% Made in the USA on a daily basis.

Thank you for shopping with Frame USA today and every day!

Enjoy 12% off Site Wide with our 4th of July Sale!

Use the coupon code: JULY4TH at both Frame USA and Posterservice, and you will receive 12% off your entire order!

 

Why Does My Artwork Look Cloudy?

When you purchase a frame from Frameusa.com that is larger than 11×14, it will automatically come with styrene instead of glass. There are some other frames such as our Poster Frames that no matter how small you order it will always come with styrene. Not only does this allow for your frames to arrive safely in tact, it also keeps the cost of shipping down.

So now that you know what material you will be getting when you order these frames, its time to answer the most common question that our customer service team receives:

Why Does My Artwork Look Cloudy?

Cloudy Simply Poly

As you can see from this image of our Simply Poly frame the vibrant header we place in all are poster frames is cloudy and doesn’t look very good. One of the biggest indicator besides the size and that cloudy look, that the frame you have ordered has arrived with styrene is this handy little sticker.

Styrene Sticker

As mentioned in the sticker, our styrene is shipped with a recycled clear plastic sheet on both sides. This allows for the styrene to arrive in perfect condition! All you have to do is peel off both sides to reveal a crystal clear piece ready to protect your artwork.

Still unsure of what we mean by clear plastic sheet? We asked one of our sales reps, Lindsay Allen, to demonstrate how to remove the film.

She also gave this little hint: “Use a piece of tape at the corner to get the peeling started!” Lindsay has been with the company for over 11 years so you could say she’s an expert when it comes to working with Styrene!

 

Looking to purchase cleaner for your styrene to keep it in tip top shape, check out our Glass & Plastic Cleaner! If you have any more questions reach out to us on any of our social media platforms or contact our customer service team!

New Series Spotlight – Chalked Picture Frames

New Picture Frame Series Spotlight – Chalked Frames

It’s finally summer, which means it’s time for some brand-new picture frames here at Frame USA! Our first brand new series to our Frame USA Collection ­­­­— the Chalked series. With the emergence of new series means two things:

  1. You have another great option for those old photos that you might have laying around.
  2. That piece of art that you’ve been searching high and low for the perfect frame to compliment it will finally find its mate.

Our new Chalked series offers a rustic look with a lot of warm earth tones that will compliment any wood tone in your house. We will be adding this series to our already large selection of eco-friendly frames. Similar to our current eco-friendly frames, Chalked is made of recycled material and then wrapped with a high-quality color wrap which allows the moulding to be blemish free.  This frame will come in a 1.25” profile, and available in 4 brand new colors: Greige, Natural, River Rock and Coffee. Each of the colors feature a unique take of the rustic and very popular chalkboard look.

Chalked Greige
Greige
Chalked Natural
Natural
Chalked River Rock
River Rock
Chalked Coffee
Coffee

This series will be released on FrameUSA.com in August, so check back soon to order your picture frames online with Frame USA. We have a few more new series up our sleeves so be on the look out for a brand new series spotlight!

Frameusa.com Website Launch – Brand New Features!

Frameusa.com

Earlier this year, we launched the brand new frameusa.com. Our marketing team spent months re-photographing all of our product images, so that our products looked the same on your screen as they do in your hands. We updated the overall look of the site as well as simplified the ordering process.  We also added a few new features that we wanted to take a moment to highlight. Check out our walk through below.

If there are features you wish for us to highlight in the future or have suggestions on some you would like to see, comment or reach out to us at [email protected]

Art Exhibition Mockup

How to Prepare for an Art Exhibition

As an artist, getting accepted into an art exhibition can be super exciting but also overwhelming. You’ve put the hours into creating your artwork, but now it’s time to make it presentable. The work itself is what got you accepted into the show, but your presentation is what will help you sell.

Arranging Your Work

One of the first things to consider is how much space you have. If you know the dimensions of the wall or room you’ll be displaying in, you can make a mock-up of how you want to arrange your pieces. This way you don’t have to worry about whether or not everything will fit once you’re ready to set up. You can do this by measuring each piece and drawing a to-scale diagram of the space. Or if you want to see how it will really look, you can measure the actual size in your home or studio, arrange your pieces in that space, and take photos to reference when you’re setting up.

Art Exhibition Mockup

Photograph Before Framing

Before getting your art display-ready, you’ll want to make sure you have high quality documentation of each piece. Depending on the kind of work you’re showing, you should photograph or scan it before adding a frame with glass or any other distracting display materials. This way, if you sell any pieces during your exhibition you’ll still be able to use it in your portfolio.

Art Exhibition

Create a Price List and Business Cards

You’ll want visitors of your art exhibition to be able to easily find prices and information about your work. Before your show starts, create a list with each piece’s title, size, media, and price. This list should be displayed somewhere that is accessible to the audience. Depending on how big the show is, you might want to print multiple copies and set them in different places.

Business cards are also important to display at your show. This way if someone is interested in your work and wants to get in touch in the future, they’ll know how to contact you. People might walk into the exhibition on a whim without the funds to purchase something. However, if they have your business card it will remind them that they enjoyed your art, and they’ll be able to easily find you.

Frame Your Work and Prepare for Display

If your art is 2-D you’ll want to make sure it’s framed and ready to hang. There are tons of options for picture frames for your work. However, it’s important that the frame doesn’t out shine or distract from your art. Keep it simple so that no one is paying more attention to the frame than your art. Black or white frames are usually a safe bet. Depending on how you choose to use a frame, or if you go without one, you might need additional hardware to be able to easily hang your work.

Art Exhibition

Be Personable!

One of the best ways to make connections is to have genuine conversations with your audience. Let them know that you’re the artist and you’re open to answering questions. If they don’t have questions for you, ask them how they heard about the show or what made them stop by. If someone seems interested in your work at all, let them know you have business cards. Being likable in general will make people more engaged with your art.

Real Wood Frames

Real Wood vs MDF Wood Frames

What’s the difference between real wood frames and MDF wood frames?

In the world of moulding you will find different types of materials used to create individual styles. It might seem as simple as wood vs plastic, but the real story is much deeper. We’ll start at the beginning of the manufacturing process to see how frames start as trees in a forest, but become our beautiful mouldings.

Real Wood

Real Wood

Let’s start by talking about real wood. Personally, my favorite part about real wood is the visible grains on the frames. It gives the frame a unique and personal feel. The texture can really show off the craftsmanship that goes into making these frames.

So real wood – what is it made out of? Most of our frames that feature real wood come from 2 types of trees: Ash and Pine. Pine is the most common. It’s also featured in one of my favorite series, In Depth. However, Ash is my favorite wood since it’s also used to make baseball bats for the major leagues.

There are big pluses to purchasing a natural and real wood frame. The wood will look amazing and give a rustic and modern look to any room and it is sturdier than an MDF frame!

Real Wood Frames

MDF Wood

MDF is an abbreviation for Medium Density Fiberboard. It is the byproduct of wood chips and sawdust which is then pressurized and held together. Because of this every single piece of MDF looks exactly the same. During the manufacturing process, we add a moulding wrap to the frame. Since every piece of MDF looks the same, it insures that it will always look exactly the same no matter how frames you purchase.

MDF Wood Frames

No matter what you cannot go wrong with choosing one over the other because they both have the biggest plus! They will make an amazing frame!

-Zach Giesting

Wedding Decor

Wedding Photography Framing Tips

Tips for Wedding Photography and Framing

I grew up believing there are a few important stages in life: graduating from college, finding your first “big kid job”, getting married, and then all the fun stuff that follows marriage. So when those steps fell into place perfectly in my life, I was over the moon! Right after getting my first big kid job post-college, my boyfriend of 3 years proposed to me. I could finally put that lengthy Pinterest board to good use.

Since I’m the baby of the family and all of my siblings had already been through wedding planning, I had plenty of help. Growing up, I remember being surrounded by wedding photos of my parents, siblings, and grandparents. So as I began planning, I knew immediately that finding a fantastic photographer was one of the most important things for me. In fact, it was the third thing I finalized.

 

So the question is – once you’re back to your normal routine after your wedding, what is the best way to display the hundreds of photos?

My personal favorite is a gallery wall! It’s a great way to display photos of all the people you love. Choose your favorite photography of you and your family, husband, or bridal party to display. Then mix them with action shots from the reception, like this lovely cake-in-the-face shot or your first dance.

Wedding Photography Wedding Photography
The frames you choose for your gallery wall don’t have to all be the same. In fact, most of the time it looks best when you select frames of different sizes, textures, and styles. Here’s a tip for using our picture frames. If you love the style of a frame but the color doesn’t fit your needs, don’t be afraid to paint them! Painting the different frames all one color is a great way to take your wedding photographs and turn them into a conversation piece.

How Can Frames Be Used While You’re Still Planning?

If you stumbled on this post while you’re just beginning your wedding planning, don’t fret! You can still use our frames BEFORE you actually have the photos to put in them. Our specially crafted frames are perfect for decorating your reception. Print out your favorite love related quote or song lyric in a fancy font and frame it. Then you can place it on a table of other framed photographs of your family, your in-laws, or photos through the years of your relationship!

The latest craze right now is signature drinks. If you’re thinking of having one at your wedding, print out the recipe and stick it on the bar! This way when your guests love the drink, they know how to make it!

Framed Wedding Photos Make Great Gifts!

Use frames to gift family members the special photos from your big day for their birthdays, holidays, or just because. Something I’m going to do for my niece (who holds a special spot in my heart) when she’s older and getting married is give her this framed photo of her wearing my wedding shoes to her as her ‘something old’. I will tell her how for the entire summer leading up to my wedding she practiced her walk down the aisle for her wedding.

Wedding Photography
On your wedding day you are surrounded by not only the person you vow to cherish until your last breath, but also everyone who has shaped and molded you into the person you are. There really is no better feeling than being surrounded by love. After the buzz wears off and you go from the fantasy bubble to the real world, your wedding photos will be what brings you back to that love filled day. So don’t let those beauties get tucked away in a box and forgotten. Take the tips shared here, display them, and remember the love.


– Brooke Sanders