Friday, February 15, 2019

A Steel and Wood Stunner

City streets are like outdoor museums, displaying giant, inhabitable works of art, constructed from intricately designed wood and steel. Now you can bring those architectural elements inside, to complement your artwork or photography.

This Steel Wood Picture Frame from our Econo-Wood Collection blends the stylish strength of steel with the natural warmth of wood and subtle gold undertones for a timeless, yet urban feel that mimics breathtaking skyscrapers like New York’s famous Flatiron Building. The frame features a gently curving side and a unique basket-weave-inspired face for a dramatic touch of texture.

With a multifaceted finish and sleek profile, this economical frame packs a stylish punch. Wood frames are shipped joined, and include spring clips to secure your art stack. Alternatively, a point driver can also be used.
H: 1 1/16" W: 1 1/8" R: 3/4"

Need help picking the perfect frame for your piece? Use our free Art Assistant™ feature for an expert design consultation.

Thursday, January 31, 2019

Get Precise Dust Cover Edges in Seconds

Dust covers are an easy, effective way to protect your framed artwork or photography in a wood frame. But without the right tools, trimming them can leave jagged edges or excess paper, compromising the look of your piece.
Luckily, American®Frame has the perfect solution: Our dust cover trimmer makes easy work of trimming your dust cover to size, resulting in a polished, professional finish that keeps dust and other damaging particles out.

The trimmer features a guide that glides along the edge of the frame, ensuring a perfect cut every time. Simply attach the paper to the back of your frame, crease the excess, align the trimmer with the edge of the frame, and draw the tool down each side. The result will be a precise trim in just seconds. We also include five blades and further blades can be purchased here.
Best of all? The trimmer is reversible, making it perfect for right and left-handed framers.
Have framing questions? Our framing experts are just a call away.

On the Wild Side: Artist Inspired by Love of Animals

There’s always something wild in Kathy Moore Wilson’s studio.

From roaring lions to sleeping wolves, her mixed-media paintings depict the animal kingdom in stunning detail.
I have always been drawn to animals,” she said. “To be frank, there are times when I feel that I communicate better with animals than with some people.”

Wilson’s work with her own Pendragon Art Studios, for which she creates paintings and drawings mostly inspired by wildlife, is a marriage of her two lifelong loves: animals and art.


I think I realized that I loved to draw from the moment I picked up a crayon and drew a line with it,” she said. “There is very little that I love more. But it took me many years before I considered making a living at it.”

After graduating from college, Wilson worked as a cartographer, which included a brief stint freelancing for National Geographic magazine before working as an animator for a graphic design company for many years. She was first inspired to try her hand at cartography by her father, a drafter.
When I took cartography in school, it was before digital tools were being used, and we were taught to draw maps with rapidograph technical pens,” she said.  “I swear, picking up one of those pens and beginning to draw with them was amazing to me. The points of the pens were so very fine that you could achieve an incredible level of detail. I loved working on topographic maps and drawing the texture of hills using little dots of ink.”

Texture is still an important part of Wilson’s work. When she works with pen and ink, she likes to use textured watercolor paper to mimic fur, feathers, and rough elephant skin.

Most of my work is very detailed,” she said. “I tend to like to get up close in my reference photos and paint the little details in a face, in the fur, in the eyes of my subjects.”

Her attention to detail doesn’t stop there. Wilson said she normally names the animals she’s drawing as she works on a piece.

“I like to think I am getting to know the animal I’m drawing,” she said. “One of my favorite quotes by the artist and educator Robert Henri is ‘Paint the flying spirit of the bird rather than its feathers.’ I take it very personally. I make up stories about the animal as I’m painting. I guess it helps me focus.”
Wilson decided to move to producing art for herself full-time a couple years ago. In the midst of a cancer scare, she was laid off from her job, and decided to finally follow her lifelong dream of creating her own art.

“It has taken me a long time to get to be a full-time artist,” she said. I really must say that I have never been happier. I love doing the work that I am doing right now. “

She draws inspiration for her works from television shows about nature, visits to zoos and animal parks, and photos she buys to re-create. And since quality reproduction is such an important part of her business, she relies on American®Frame for fine art printing.

“American Frame was recommended to me by an artist whose work I greatly admire, Cynthia Decker,” she said. “I was impressed by the variety of substrates available and was very happy to see that American Frame prints on Arches watercolor paper, which is my favorite printing surface for my digital watercolor work. I nearly always embellish my prints with additional watercolor or colored pencil, and I have been extremely happy with the results.”

She also said American Frame’s fast shipping recently helped her make a tight delivery deadline over the holiday season.

When she’s not bringing animals to life in her studio, Wilson enjoys spending time with her husband and dog, Maisy. She’s also a resident artist at Artist & Makers Studios near her home in Rockville, MD.

Being an artist can be a mostly solitary experience,” she said. “I love knowing that I have my friends and fellow artists at Artists & Makers to provide feedback and support. It has been a wonderful experience getting to know these artists.”

Curators’ Choice Finds Perfect Treatments For Art

We can all use a little help sometimes.

American® Frame’s Curators’ Choice is our latest design tool that helps take the guesswork out of the picture frame kit selection process. Just as a gallerist curates pieces of art, our professionals curate the perfect treatment for artwork, creating unique, museum-quality frame and mat board combinations to suit any style.

Framing isn’t a one-size-fits-all formula. Further, navigating one’s way through the multitude of options can be a bit intimidating and time-consuming. Curators’ Choice is a response to the truly individual nature of each work of art, showing an understanding that different pieces require particular treatments to reach their full potential.

This innovative approach to framing consists of distinct picture frame kit collections. Using fine archival picture framing materials, our team created museum-quality custom treatments featuring eye-catching color combinations, textures and proportions to suit your purpose, budget and style.

American Frame is kicking off Curators’ Choice with four collections: Gallery Ready; Refined Rustic; Not So Standard; and Inspired by Italy.

 The Gallery Ready collection is a diverse group of wood and Nielsen® metal gallery frames sure to have artwork ready for opening night. As its name implies, Refined Rustic provides the weathered frames and unique mats for a more natural, unpolished appearance for watercolors, charcoal drawings and other works on paper. Not So Standard is a collection of Nielsen metal frames, luxurious linens and 6-play mats that are far from ordinary. Inspired by Italy features Florence-inspired colors and textures with wood and metal frames perfect for office décor, memorabilia or Renaissance-style artwork.

With Curators’ Choice, you begin the process by clicking on your frame style of choice. Although American Frame provides guidance, the final say is always up to the artist – customizations to size or design elements can be made to suit the desired style, purpose, and budget.

Each collection treats the artwork with the utmost care – backing boards are acid-free and glazing is clear archival framer’s grade acrylic. Meticulous attention to detail is given to each selection, as each treatment features PrecisionCut™ to create picture-perfect edges every time.


After selecting your collection and treatment, you may customize size, frame, mat, glazing and mounting. These customizations may then be reviewed before finalizing the order.

No matter the style of artwork or where it will be hung, we can all use a little help. Welcome to Curators’ Choice.

Should You Frame Canvas?

Artists love canvas because it allows the textures of the paint they use to stand out. But if you’d like to display your canvas piece, you’re left with one question: to frame or not to frame?
Unlike prints, canvases can look polished without a frame. But the right frame can enhance the look of a piece and give it extra attention in a room full of unframed canvases, which can help you make a sale or stand out in a juried show.
There are a few things to consider when choosing a frame. If you’re using a gallery wrap or have crucial details close to the edges of the canvas, opt for a canvas floater frame. They attach to the back of the canvas, so none of the image is covered, creating the illusion that the piece is “floating” within the frame. American®Frame offers metal and wood canvas float frames.
For a timeless look, consider a wide frame with a linen liner to add texture. We have a large selection of canvas depth frames ranging from simple to carved and available in a variety of finishes from natural to metallic.
Want one-on-one expert framing advice for your project? Try our new Art Assistant™ feature.
For more tips, artist features, and product info, sign up for our e-newsletter.

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

The Minimalist Metal Frame with Plenty of Presence

Minimalistic doesn’t mean forgettable.

The RL 179 Black with Silver Metal Picture Frame from the Ridgeline Nielsen® 34 collection is a testament to that. Weighing in with a width of just ¼”, our slimmest profile provides a stark, classy outline for your work, letting the art speak for itself.

This Nielsen frame has a cool-toned, brushed silver face that it pairs to perfection with matte black sides. Its recessed face means the art sits back into the frame, adding depth, character and an unexpected presence.

Proudly manufactured by Nielsen in the USA, the RL 179 has an anodized finish on high-quality aluminum for a sleek, strong and flawless surface. The 100% recyclable metal frame is acid-free, making it ideal for conservation framing. Not compatible with spacers.

Each American Frame metal frame arrive as an easy-to-assemble DIY kit. All of the hardware necessary to easily construct the frame is provided – the only tool you need is a screwdriver. 
H: 1 3/8"     W: 1/4"     R: 11/16"

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

The Stylish Way to Give Art

The holiday season is in the books. But at American®Frame, we know gift-giving opportunities pop up all year long. And whether you’re giving your own art or photography, or purchasing a frame or tool for your favorite artist, we make it easy to send gifts.

First, select “Yes” under “Is this a gift?” during checkout. Then, you’ll see two options.

Standard Packing with Digital Gift Message: This free option allows you to provide a message up to 150 characters, which we’ll print on the enclosed packaging slip. We’ll also omit pricing on the packaging slip. Your order will be packaged with care using our deluxe packaging materials and arrive in an American Frame branded box.

Deluxe Gift Packaging with Handwritten Card: This is the perfect choice for an impressive gift presentation. We’ll pack your items in our deluxe, branded packaging, beautifully wrap them and finish the package with a bow. We’ll then handwrite your personal message on a high-quality card and include a packing list without prices. The charge for this option is just $5.00.

Next time you print and frame your art as a gift or purchase another framing gift from us, don’t worry about wrapping and delivering it yourself. Count on our gift wrapping service to add ease and elegance to gift giving. Not sure what to send? An American®Frame gift card is a great option.
Sending your artwork to a customer? We offer white label shipping as well.

Have a question about your gift? Our framing experts are just a phone call away.
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