Framing Black & White Photographs

Black and white will always have a place in the world of photography. Because they are so monochromatic there are not as many options when it’s time to choose a frame. For this client, who collects vintage photographs of famous rock and roll bands, we keep it simple with a slanted black satin frame.  A nice wide mat with a deep bevel mimics the shape of the frame and draws you to the subject. A classic design for a classic medium.

frosted acrylic frame

Frosted acrylic frame

This small black and white photograph of a sweet moment between a boy and his dog is a calm and bright image that could easily be overpowered by a bold or weighty frame. As the subjects are the only dark details of the image, we matted the photo with a broad bright-white mat.  The mat allows the piece to have enough breathing room while complimenting the white background of the photo.  The deep bevel of the mat guides the eye of the viewer, directing them right to the subjects.

This frosted acrylic frame is a bright and peaceful design choice for many works.  These frames pick up light, as sources shine through the clear faces, and accent the color of the wall on which its hung.  The clean, glacial appearance works perfectly for this photo as it creates a wide border to enlarge the piece while remaining soft and light, creating a lasting serene and radiant effect.


Framing with Flare

For more fun and flirtatious projects, we at Paris Frameworks offer a number of bright and flashy frames.  Whether you desire high gloss, fun and unique designs, or rich colors we have a profile to catch your eye.

This photograph featuring a shimmering display of rouge lipstick is a glamorous piece that our client wanted to energize with a frame to match.  With a 1 ½ inch white mat border we chose to emphasize the highlights of the image while giving the piece room to breathe.  This slim, glossy frame catches the light as the molding has a rippling effect, making is appear almost liquid.  The deep red of the frame mirrors the hue of the lipsticks, giving a sense of allure right to the edge of the piece.  A fabulous overall effect!

flemish realism

In the style of Flemish Realism

This photograph of a flower still life is stylized in the tones and arrangement used in Flemish Realism paintings.  Flemish refers to the Dutch and North Belgian region of Europe and the art movement Flemish Realism spanned across the 17th century, depicting domestic scenes as well as the materialistic still lifes seen in everyday life.  Floral paintings were common in this era, usually painted before a dark background and illuminated by a bold focal light source.

Frame styles of this era and region tend to be in black or dark shades with a repeating pattern of simple and almost a skeletal resemblance.  We honored the traditions of Flemish art and framing by presenting this photograph as if it were a painting.  This black Dutch style frame has been dusted with mat grey to accentuate the pattern of the frame, while giving it and aged look.  The charcoal linen fillet separates the photo from the dark frame, adding a tone that prevents the photo to be overwhelmed by the black of the frame.  These linen wrapped, wood fillets were commonly used when framing paintings of the Flemish region.  Both the fillet and the photo lie beneath non-glare museum glass to further the illusion that the piece could be a painting.  This homage to the style of painting accomplished within a photograph shows how styles of art remain inspiring and respected centuries after the era from which they came.

dark mat

Effects of a dark mat

A dark window mat framing this vintage photograph of the Palio di Siena is an excellent way to enhance the excitement of the image.  The charcoal mat brings the eye to the dark figures in movement.  The repeating pattern of the thin smoky frame plays off the repeating patterns of the ancient buildings, suggesting the antiquity of this race.  The white edging of the photograph creates a border to brighten the highlights of the piece while broadening the image.  While the photograph’s border on the top and sides is ¼ inch wide, the border on the bottom is ½ inch.  This adds weight to the image while giving the framed piece a unique effect.

22k white gold

22K White Gold Frame

Our favorite of the week! A 22 karat, white gold stepped frame is perfect for this architectural photograph. A 12 ply mat with generous width allows the photograph to breathe and elevates the piece by increasing it’s size.

acrylic framing

Acrylic Framing

Paris is thrilled with the results of this acrylic sanded frame! We choose the frame for our client, rather than a contemporary black or white, to accentuate and mirror the misty atmosphere of the photograph.

The clear acrylic frame allows the background to fade away and pushes the rich hues of the photograph toward the viewer.

baby photos

Simple, Clean, Baby Portrait

A beautiful, clean, and luminous image deserves an equally clean frame job! Not only does our white mat and white frame combination help the skin tones and blue accessories to pop, our client’s photograph will be preserved for generations with UV protected glass and a 100% cotton rag mat.

We look forward to seeing these cute kids grow up and enjoy the framed portrait celebrating the newest member of the family!

brushed silver frame

brushed silver frame

Brushed Silver Frame

This brushed silver over maple wood cap frame compliments the cool and warm tones of this cityscape scene.  The scraped silver reveals striations of gold which accentuate the amber light quality within these pieces, as well as adding warmth to the contrasting deep shades of blue. The brightness of the silver finish and straight edges of the frame play off the architecture of the cityscape.  The gold lines picking up on the lights in the piece and the silver mirroring the grey of the buildings creates a harmonious visual experience, tying it all together.

wendy paton

Wendy Paton Flaunting our Handmade Mouldings!

Prominently displayed in our store are eight silver gelatin prints from esteemed fine art photographer Wendy Paton. Her black and white candid portraits of Parisian nightlife are a great way to showcase the sumptuous subtleties of our handmade frames. Pictured above is one of the two wall displays in-store. The two lower prints are framed in one of our signature mouldings that features a steep inner bevel and a delicately thin outer rim. The upper two prints show off frames with discreetly beveled faces. All are finished with a satin black rub, thick 12-ply mats, and protected by Museum Glass. This is framing at its finest!

To check out more of Wendy’s work and to stay up-to-date with her career, visit her website at

machu pichu

Clean Contrast

This crisp photograph of Machu Pichu required two things from its frame. It needed something stark to compliment the high contrast in the photo, but which would not distract from the bright color and copious detail. We opted for the classic black frame/white mat combination, but with a few playful twists.

Because the city depicted in the photograph is so ancient, we didn’t want the frame to look too modern. Rather than a standard, contemporary, flat black frame, we chose a more traditional, carved moulding. The finish is an antique black, with several purposeful nicks to show distress.

Though the black of the frame stands out against the pure white mat, we wanted to play up the contrast a little more by adding a black fillet. A fillet is a thin, extra lip of moulding that typically fits under the bevel of the mat to add detail.

The vintage charm paired with the sleek, clean feeling of black-and-white makes for a piece that can blend with all kinds of decor. The overall effect is a crisp, classical look.


Elegant Simplicity

In the world of framing, simplicity is key. Sometimes the most straightforward choice is the strongest one, especially when dealing in black and white. For this striking Robert Mapplethorpe poster, we chose a black frame with a slightly wider face. The proportions and sleek coloring draw just enough attention, and provides a clean finish. The white border around the image is equal to the width of the frame, and thus offers no distractions or strains on the eye. The overall effect is as starkly austere as the image itself.

industrial steel frame

Steel Frames and Industrial Content

This captivating photograph is full of mischief and drama.  The staged composition and the exaggerated lighting give it a theatrical quality that is reminiscent of Americana illustration.  The scene particularly references Norman Rockwell and Andy Warhol, but with a dark twist.  We sought to match the gritty, industrial textures in the image’s scenery with a handmade, steel frame.

Rather than highlighting the lighter tones in the image with a modern white frame, we chose the steel for its industrial fabrication, its neutral dark tone, and its metallic highlights.  When light bounces off the frame at its edges, a light grey tone is produced that matches the appliances and wires in the image.  Simultaneously, the darker, raw texture of the steel beautifully compliments the high contrast shadows present in the figures and background.  The welded seams of the frame’s corners lend the piece a particularly intriguing detail.  We find the raw, metallic tones in this custom frame to be a perfect match for the picture’s dark, behind-the-scenes setting.