“Custom Framing” versus imitation, composite materials

The advent of artificial materials for picture frames, led principally by budget-conscious customers and institutional contract framing locations where the artwork is ubiquitous or of low value, has resulted in many fine home and corporate client complaints about quality and conditions. 

Imitation wood picture frames are made of polystyrene, and a dense “thermo-mechanical characterisations of flax fibre and thermoplastic resin composites”.(1) These framing materials are joined with mere staples or glue. Their chief benefit is that they are half the price of comparable wood frames. This is particularly true when the framer intends to frame something that is not itself intrinsically valuable, such as posters, open-ended digital prints, snapshots and sentimental keepsakes where the cost of framing should be reflective of the lower value of the item to be framed. 


Price conscious framers and consumers stand to benefit most from imitation wood picture frames by reducing the price of a typical frame job – by selecting pre-refabricated composite frames mass-produced for low-cost. 

Rockwell Quality quality, wood framing materials handled by caring framing professionals brings valued preservation, conservation & protection into fine homes, offices, galleries & museums. We Truly Care. 


Polystyrene Frame being glued

Hanging wire eye hook screwed through front of frame

(1)  Researchgate.net