Where do you find picture framing in the Salem Oregon area? Well, for those of you who know us as an art gallery, you might be surprised to learn that custom picture framing has been our primary business for over thirty years. Our history, as a business started with a very small frame shop in South Salem in 1986 and we’ve continued offering custom framing ever since. So, although the store has changed identities, locations and business models several times, picture framing has always been the backbone of what we do here.
One of our many past advertising campaigns used the phrase “Two sides of the Same Coin,” which meant that we provided both high quality art and the very best in custom picture framing. The two are for us, interdependent sides of our business. We have always included the title gallery and framing in our business names throughout the years.
There are two major misconceptions that have arisen over the years about our store because of this dual nature. It is part of our identity crisis as a business but at the same time, a great opportunity and challenge for us. These misconceptions are:
- Because we are a retail frame shop, we can’t possibly have quality artwork
- Because we are a gallery, we can’t possibly have affordable custom framing.
Those of you who have attended our shows know that we not only feature great monthly art events, but also a variety of local artists’ work filling our main gallery. Each month we feature around 200 original artworks in the gallery. And although we have been hosting artist shows for years, it’s taken a while for us to get to the point of becoming an originals gallery. We just started our Featured Artist Showcase a little over 3 years ago. Because we’re not a museum, or art association, many people along with the local press, have overlooked us as a gallery in past years thinking that we were just a retail frame shop. We are slowly, but steadily overcoming the stigma of being a retail store and gaining notoriety for our original art showcase.
Quality Picture Framing at Affordable prices
What I’d really like to address in this article is the second misconception above. That is, because we have an art gallery, we are too expensive on the framing side of the business. Nothing could be further from the truth. In our custom framing center, you will find almost every level of framing available in the picture framing marketplace. From basic metals to floater frames, Ready-mades to high-end closed-corner frames, we have something for everyone. In addition, we have one of the largest selections of quality matting in the Willamette valley. All of that means is that we can custom tailor your project for every design and décor need while staying within your budget.
We also have a lot of in-stock framing inventory which are offered at significant savings all year-round without having to get coupons or wait for sales. We can help you find ways to economize when needed without sacrificing the quality of materials or comprising the design of your project. Our main concern is that you get a great value for your framing dollar. Beyond that, we do have some rules that we always follow regarding materials and framing processes, they are:
- No Cardboard– from regular paper matting(non-archival) to backing material, cardboard products are not available at our frame shop.
- No plastic frames- We use only quality wood and metal frames from reputable manufacturers. Cheaper styrene products are brittle and eventually degrade.
- No thin glass or flimsy acrylic sheets. We use mostly 2mm and thicker glazing with a minimum of 45% U/V filter.
- No masking or “scotch” tape used for mounting of artwork. We use minimally invasive and removable products whenever possible.
- No Uniframe or clip frames. They are simply not safe display methods because they do not provide a stable framework for artwork.
We will never advise you to use inferior materials or framing techniques to save a couple of dollars because it’s not worth the savings in the long run. Too many potentially valuable artworks have been lost in the effort to save money. We know, because we take apart and rescue at least 3 per month that have been improperly framed. Custom framing should always be method of preservation, not destruction. Always know your framer and the type of materials being used to prevent art tragedies from happening.
Don’t be enticed by big box specials and sales. Price should never be the first consideration when choosing a frame shop. Usually, you will find that their prices are really no better than quality framers in our area (on the same materials). In fact, some chain stores raise prices just before a sale to make it seem like you’re getting a great deal. We prefer to offer consistent pricing programs on our in-stock frames and invite comparison with our prices for commonly carried frames.
We can generally match prices providing we can use materials that follow the afore-mentioned 5 rules. After all, when we use the slogan…”We don’t just frame pictures, we frame memories,” we are expressing our respect for your artwork and what it means to you. Regardless of what you’re framing, you are investing the time, effort and money to custom frame it, so make sure that you’re completely comfortable with your frame shop.
Our promise to you if you decide to frame your artwork with us, we will take the time to talk with you about your design ideas, décor needs and budget to find you the best possible design. We believe that we can accommodate any artwork, décor and budget so don’t be fooled by the gallery title on our sign. We are one of the largest, most productive custom frame shops in Salem Oregon.
Framing Gallery Location:
Elsinore Framing & Fine Art Gallery
444 Ferry St. SE
Salem, OR. 97301