Arts & Crafts Framing Samples

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Project by CaptainSkully posted 06-25-2009 06:02 PM 2770 views 11 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Arts & Crafts Framing Samples
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My girlfriend went to Framer’s Workshop in Berkeley to get some glass for the poster frame I recently made her, and she came back with the glass and a job offer. Kirstie, the owner, needs a local woodworker to make customer frames. She asked me to make up some samples, so I ran home and cranked out a couple of corners and profiles. They’re all QSWO. The one on the left is a mortise and tenon corner with Red Mahogany Danish Oil. The one in the middle is stop-chamfered with TransTing Reddish Brown. The one on the right is a stepped profile that was ebonized with steel wool vinegar my first attempts (thanks to Allison). For some reason, this finish causes the hand-rubbed poly to be considerably more glossy.

I took the samples in and Kirstie really liked them. She also requested some thinner samples so the frames don’t overpower the smaller prints. After I finish posting this, I’m heading out to the shop to make some 3/4” half-lapped corners, with 1/4” pillowed ebonized plugs.

All that remains now is to figure out pricing per foot for the frames. If anyone has any suggestions on how to do that, please let me know. I’m thinking that I’ll come up with a fixed cost per corner design, plus a linear foot number for the frame width. I like making frames because they really add to the subject, and they can be made from scrap wood.

Oh, while working the Summer Sailstice Boat Show on Treasure Island, CA last weekend, my girlfriend chatted up Pam, Jim DeWitt's daughter. She’s also interested in custom frames too, so I’ll be taking my samples over to Point Richmond, CA next week to see what she thinks. That would be really cool for me, as it nicely blends woodworking and sailing.

-- You can't control the wind, but you can trim your sails

6 comments so far

View Hacksaw's profile


185 posts in 3344 days

#1 posted 06-25-2009 06:16 PM

Sweet I t is awesome when opportunities come from expenditures! I was at at the big box store buying a new blade for my coping saw to finish a baseboard project I did and got another baseboard job out of it simply because the person didn’t know what I was buying and asked “whats that?”followed by “what is it used for” couple hundred in my pocket for a .59 cent expenditure.Sweet

-- Nothing's just gets expensive

View CanadaJeff's profile


207 posts in 3578 days

#2 posted 06-25-2009 06:21 PM

Hey Captian
I have found a website that has an interactive form to fill out. Input the costs of your materials, supplies, labour and your profit taking and it calculates the cost of the item.
It’s not perfect, but should give you an idea of pricing.
Take a look

View CaptainSkully's profile


1591 posts in 3526 days

#3 posted 06-25-2009 06:41 PM

Thanks Jeff! That’s awesome. I’ll give it a look-see. I’m much better at woodworking than running a business, sad to say.

-- You can't control the wind, but you can trim your sails

View GSwoodworker's profile


74 posts in 3259 days

#4 posted 06-25-2009 09:25 PM

I made a round picture frame and took it in for glass and a mat to be cut for it. The store owner loved it and said all of here customers saw it wanted one too. But no one wanted to pay the price I wanted for one. A round frame was a lot of work with all the segmented angle, then use a radius cutter jig on a router, reinforced corners etc..
Good luck with your pricing. I have no advice for you except don’t do it for nothing, to low and you will not have time to get anything else done, to high and your tools won’t see any action.

View Mike Gager's profile

Mike Gager

665 posts in 3235 days

#5 posted 06-25-2009 09:34 PM

i really like the one on the left the ray flecks really popped. the danish oil is the only thing you used? did you sand to get the rays to show so well or what?

View Pat Cavanaugh's profile

Pat Cavanaugh

160 posts in 3339 days

#6 posted 06-28-2009 09:26 PM

I get all my glass from a glass shop. I’d have never thought to go to a framing shop. I might be missing out on some business opportunities.

-- Pat - Biloxi, MS

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