Anatomy of a Frame

Most people who display art in a frame don’t really think too much about that frame. They consider the way it looks on the outside and how well it displays and protects the art contained inside of it. However, there are lots of components that make up the frame, each with its own purpose.

If you’ve ever wondered about the anatomy of a frame, or if you’re only just thinking about it now, then read on to learn more about it. Some of these components are essential to custom framing while others are optional.

The bare essentials

The following three components are those that you can’t do without in custom framing:

Backing board – The backing board is a piece of material that goes behind your artwork, and everything else within the frame. It is usually padded to provide extra support and protection. Your artwork will either be attached to this backing board or to another element in front of it.

Glazing – This is the part that covers your artwork and the other components inside the frame. It is usually made from glass or acrylic and can have a number of protective properties depending on the quality of glazing you choose, e.g. UV protection and anti-glare.

The frame – The frame itself is, of course, an essential part of framing artwork. It keeps all of the other components in and forms a large part of the appearance of your artwork. Wood is the most commonly used material but there are a variety of options, as well as a range of dimensions available.

Other components

Various other components can be added to your custom frame to either provide extra protection or add more flair.

Matboard Matboard can serve as a frame within the frame for your artwork. It goes around the art to add more visual interest and complement the piece. It can also improve aesthetics by concealing fittings that have attached your artwork to the board behind it. By protruding slightly from the artwork, it also serves to protect it by creating a space between the art and the glazing.

Back mat – A back mat is an additional layer that can be placed in between the backing board and the artwork. The art can be attached to the back mat instead, providing an extra layer of support and protection.

Fillet – Fillets, or enhancers, can be placed around the inside edge of the frame or the matboard to enhance its visual appearance. It is typically used to add extra detail and elegance.

These are the main components that make up the anatomy of a custom frame, and they’re all there to make your piece of art look good and retain its condition. Take a look at some of our project samples to see the end result of all this, and get in touch if you have custom framing needs around Advance, Winston Salem, Bermuda Run, Clemmons, Lewisville, and Mocksville.