The Unsung Hero of Framing


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In the second installment of our journal series “Displaying Your Photographs: 101” we take a look at one of the most functional parts of a high quality wood frame.  

“The Strainer”.  It sounds like some sort of super-hero from that 90's Ben Stiller movie, Mystery Men.  Unfortunately it's not a super hero.  For this journal post we’ll go into the unsung hero of our frames - the strainer.  It’s the part of the frame that does all the hard work and gets none of the credit.

We think the back of the frame is just as important as the front.  No cutting corners just because it won’t be visible 99% of the time.  Our strainers are made of 100% american grown, basswood.  Basswood is the wood of choice for strainers because it's lighter and less costly than say a maple or walnut piece of wood.  

For our frames the strainer serves two important purposes:

1.  It easily secures the artwork package (aka matting and backboard) into the frame.  A couple screws and you're done.  Easy peazy.  

2.  It improves the longevity of the frame by dispersing the hanging load from the frame itself.  Gravity is no friend to a frame.  Over the lifetime of a frame the downward pressure placed on the frames joints will steadily weaken the frame.  This is especially true when the hanging materials are attached directly to the frame itself.  When were talking about cheap overseas manufactured frames, you might not care about this, but when you invest in a nice solid wood frame, you want to make sure that it lasts.  The strainer removes this load from the wood and preserves the mitered joints (four corners of the frame).  

Here's a quick illustration...

Thanks for reading!  

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