Saturday, October 3, 2009

A Love Affair with Frames

I love antique picture frames. I love their intricate detail and their nicely aged patina. I love that each frame has its own unique character and I love that feeling when you can bring life back to a piece that has been so sadly forgotten.

I bought all of these frames on an antique field trip I took this past summer. The above gold antique frame is one of my favorites. It's in wonderful condition and I plan on having it cut down an inch or so to fit a beautiful landscape oil painting I have. I paid $60 for it.

This gold frame is in fairly rough shape but at $20, it was a steal. I have a 7 x 7 rose oil painting that will go beautifully with the floral detail in the frame. Cutting it down will remove the bad spots you can see on the left. It will also get a good cleaning.

I love the feel of these old rustic frames. It's sometimes hard to find these frames with all of their leaves in tact but when you do, they compliment nature prints beautifully. They can be surprisingly expensive so it's worth being patient. I paid $28 for this one.

I just love this little hand carved round wood frame. It's very old and in very good shape. It's a 3 x 3 so it too will also go on the family photo wall. This sweet little frame was just $12.

Having antique frames cut down requires a special skill. I happened to find a professional restorationist who will cut down a frame for $100. This is a very fair price because even with the cost of what I pay for the frame, it's still much less expensive than having something custom framed, and most importantly, the frame is one of a kind.

The above is an example of recycling beautiful antique frames. I found these identical Victorian frames in pristine condition. I was thrilled when an artist friend of mine (whose work I passionately collect), offered some pieces of hers that would fit the unique dimensions of the frames. I think the gold hues go brilliantly with the blues and greens of the sky and pasture.


  1. Trina,
    Of all the beautiful things you do, your collection of art and frames is what I love best. Those two landscapes are so lovely in those frames! I hope you'll show us more in situ when they are complete.

  2. Hi Trina,

    I've never even thought of having a frame cut to size. What a great idea! Your frame collection is so gorgeous.


  3. Hi Trina.
    I had never really thought about collecting antique frames and was just mourning the fact that the new stuff wasn't appealing. Lovely idea! I was wondering...when you find your beautiful frames, do you sometimes have to take old artwork or photos out?

  4. Hi Sarah, Often I do but either they're badly faded prints or oil paintings that aren't done well. If they are nice, I often don't buy the frame because then the cost would be significantly more. The frames I buy are usually the most valuable part of the piece, which makes it more affordable. Thanks for writing! xoTrina

  5. Hi Trina,

    I recently found your blog and am absolutely loving your eye. You and your husband have brought such beauty back to this little old house. It is very inspiring.

    I know this post was written ages ago (new to this...don't know how you receive comments?) But I was wondering who your artist friend was? Does she have a shop or website where she sells her art? The paintings are just so lovely, I had to ask.

    Have a wonderful day.

  6. Hi Trina,

    I have so many beautiful family photos, both old and new that I may be at risk of displaying too many. I need to do some editing and reframing and would love to see your family photo wall for inspiration. I love the idea of collecting old table top frames for my bedroom dresser. Thank you, but what about the family photo wall? Did I miss that post?


Thank you for leaving your thoughts. Kind regards, Catherine

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