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Tips & Tricks Thursday – Framing Your Mood

As you know, I’ve been working on updating my bedroom (by now you’re very well acquainted with my dresser saga…).  A while ago I ordered some photos by Kaylee Huffman on Etsy.

They’re great shots of the coast, Disneyland, etc. that reminded me of California.


Okay, I’m a bit sentimental about them (…seriously, I still get choked up when I see shots of the Rose Bowl on TV…), and I want to find the perfect way to display them.

That got me thinking about today’s T&T post – How different framing options ultimately create different moods for your artwork (or photography, or whatever).

You’re probably thinking, “Duh, Tiina.  That’s pretty obvious”, and it is.  But I wanted to clarify what moods those different frames can create.  Maybe it will help you finally get around to framing (re-framing) that piece that’s just been sitting around collecting dust in your closet (not that mine have, or anything…).

There are 3 that I’m considering for my photographs.


You’d generally categorize this by using a white frame / white mat board and framing a bold or colorful piece of artwork.  You could even use a black frame and black mat board (or any tone on tone – you get the point.).  The focus is high impact, showcasing your piece in a gallery-like way.  It evokes a fresh, modern feel that is simple and clean.

It’s bright, bold, and sometimes has a hipster-vibe to it (depending on the actual artwork).  This is also a great way to showcase children’s artwork or even accessorize a child’s room.  The bright colors can create a bold-eclectic vibe when mixed with pieces that have colorful, graphic patterns.  The mood can also take a more sophisticated turn when paired with minimalist interior design.

Modern Declaration

Modern Declaration

J and J Design Group

J and J Design Group

Natalie Merrillyn

Natalie Merrillyn


I love this one because it pairs a traditional frame with a more contemporary image (like a black and white sketch, photograph, or a graphic print).  The juxtaposition of the old and the new creates an unexpected eclectic look that’s very chic.  It adds an element of interest – being bold, unique, and maybe even a bit daring.  It’s thinking outside of the box, and would pair nicely in any number of interiors.  It would add a twist of traditional to a modern setting, and have the opposite effect in a traditional one.

Ranvita la Cour

Ranvita la Cour

The Painted Hive - LOVE this being used as a headboard!

The Painted Hive – LOVE this being used as a headboard!

Erika Brechtel

Erika Brechtel


This effect is sleek and soothing.  It uses simple frames (which can be very striking in a metal finish) that are usually narrow and displayed in a symmetrical or orderly way.  Again, they showcase pieces in a gallery-like style.

This works for any number of artwork styles, but I think they make a great impact with simple sketches or black and white images.  A tip here is to increase the amount of negative space (the mat board) around the image for maximum drama.

Kelly Deck Design

Kelly Deck Design

Caitlin Wilson Design

Caitlin Wilson Design

Kelly Deck Design

Kelly Deck Design

I know that I’ve only scratched the surface on framing styles (Literally.  The ideas are endless.), but these are the ones that really speak to me.

Now, if I can just decide on which one will work best for my photos.


I’m thinking that because my Campaign-style dressers have a little bit more of a vintage feel, I will opt for a frame that is sleek and contemporary.  Maybe the minimalist style… hmmm… We’ll see.

Do you have a favorite style?


3 Comments Post a comment
  1. Brian Watkins #

    Great ideas, Tiina!

    February 21, 2013
  2. Can’t wait to see which one you choose!

    February 22, 2013

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