Framing your prints properly is important to do them justice - they weren't designed to be blue-tacked to the wall! Follow this easy step-by-step guide to frame your prints like a pro.
If you want to see this method in action, I have a posted a video to my Instagram - check out the Reels section
1. Let your prints relaaaaxx
With clean hands, remove your prints from the mailing tube they were shipped in and allow them to relax face-up on a level surface (out of little hands' reach) for an hour. Trust me, framing is a lot easier with a flat print!
2. Prepare the frame & clean
Whichever frame you bought, take the whole thing apart and lay it out. If your frame has a glass window, take extra care to avoid any breakage. Wipe the inside of your window (plastic or glass) with a glass care cloth and a glass cleaning solution - I like Windex the best. Give it a few minutes to dry.
3. Stop your print sagging or buckling
The key to getting a professional finish on your prints is to stop them sagging or buckling in the frame. This usually happens with thin paper prints or cheaper frames over time, but it's so easy to fix!
If you're using matting board
Secure your print to the matting board
Matting board is the 'frame within a frame', it's usually white in colour and made of a thick card. Use an acid-free masking tape to secure your print to the matting board. Do not use sticky tape or double-sided tape as this can damage your print and the matting board and you may want to change up the print in future, so keep everything in the best condition!
OR, if you're NOT using matting board
Add some cardboard
Add some plain, clean cardboard behind your print. Cut the cardboard to the same size as your print. If your print is A3 or A2 size, you can slide the piece of cardboard behind your print and reassemble the frame - no gluing needed.
If you want a pro finish or have a large print, you
need to glue your print to foam core (a white, foam backing) or card. All you need is your cut-to-size foam core/card and acid-free spray adhesive (absolutely must be acid-free, unless you like ruining your print). Make sure your foam core or card is 5mm thick or less otherwise you won't be able to do your frame back up. You can buy the supplies from your local craft or office supply store.
To glue your print, apply the adhesive evenly to the foam core/card first, then spray a light even coat on your print. Lift your print gently and lay it onto the foam core, ensure the edges line up. You may need to shift the print slightly or work out bubbles quickly before the glue sets. If you do end up with air bubbles, quickly but gently smooth them out by working them to the edges using a clean microfiber cloth or towel.
4. Reassemble + clean
Place your print face down onto the clean window and then put the generic card/paper that comes with the frame back too - this helps to push the print against the window and reduces the chance of sagging. Place the back of the frame back on carefully to not move the print. If your frame has clips, I use a good ol' butter knife to get in behind and wedge them out before pushing them down with my fingers (it saves your nails big-time). Push the clips down as firmly as you can. Take extra care if you have a glass window - firm, but gentle. Make sure to clean the front of the window gently with a glass cleaner and cloth.
5. Hang + enjoy
You can use a nail and hook but I like to hang my frames up with Command picture hanging strips so I don't damage walls - they are SO easy to install and you can pull your frame off easily if you want to change prints. Grab a buddy to hold the frame and mark the ideal hanging spot with a pencil so you can step back and make sure you like the placement. If you have OCD like me, use a level to ensure the print hangs evenly.
Well done - you're a pro! Grab a G&T, step back and appreciate your work.
Have you framed it like a pro at home? I would love to see you in action and the end result - make sure you share it with me on Instagram!