A Frame-Maker’s Journal

TimHolton writingUpdates and ruminations on our work and mission to revive the art and craft of framing pictures. Here I'll show you new jobs we're especially proud of and keep you up on what's going on at the Gallery, as well as discuss topics germane to our work, including handcraft and work generally, the place of art, and ideals of the Arts and Crafts Movement (especially its greatest leaders, John Ruskin and William Morris).

I hope you’ll subscribe (see the form in the left column) or at least check back often. And I welcome your comments!

—Tim Holton

Framing Nan Phelps and Black and White Portrait Photographs

Posted on October 2nd, 2019

We’ve just hung a new show on the same idea of recent exhibits at the gallery, which have each featured a particular pictorial medium and emphasized our approach to framing it. Having covered antique Japanese prints, watercolors, and historical California painting... continue reading.

Framing a Lucia Mathews Watercolor

Posted on September 6th, 2019

Here’s a pretty special recent job: a watercolor by Lucia Kleinhans Mathews, “Portrait of a Young Girl Seated in a Meadow,” from about 1914. Measuring 14″ x 11, the painting is characteristic of Lucia and her husband Arthur Mathews’s distinctly har... continue reading.

Framing Herman Herzog

Posted on August 30th, 2019

We’ve decided to extend our show, Historical California Paintings. Originally scheduled to close tomorrow, August 31, we’ll keep it up for another week (through Saturday, September 7). If you haven’t seen the show yet, it’s a great opportunity to... continue reading.

Re-framing Bill Bender

Posted on August 23rd, 2019

Two paintings by the notable California landscape and genre painter Bill Bender (1919-2016) recently came to us from a collector with a deep love of California’s deserts, and thus a great appreciation for this particular painter’s affinity for the desert lan... continue reading.

Framing Three RTK Studio Tiles

Posted on August 12th, 2019

RTK Studio, of Ojai, California, makes beautiful tiles, and it was a pleasure to frame these three critters. Each tile is 6″ x 6″, with frames all 2″ wide and made in stained quartersawn white oak. The three hang in the same room, so we wanted the fram... continue reading.

Framing Thomas Hill and Historical California Paintings: An Exhibit and New Webpage

Posted on July 15th, 2019

We’ve spent many years developing and establishing our expertise in framing early California paintings. Now we’re pleased to announce our first exhibit of such work. “Historical California Paintings and How to Frame Them” will open next Saturday,... continue reading.

Framing a Maynard Dixon Sketch

Posted on June 22nd, 2019

Here’s a 1901 sketch by the famed Western painter Maynard Dixon (1875-1946), titled “Three Bucking Broncos”. We framed it in walnut with a black wash, in a simple profile with restrained but carefully sympathetic corner carving pattern to honor it. (Th... continue reading.

Introducing Oxford Frames

Posted on June 21st, 2019

For many years we’ve offered a simple lap-joined frame we call the Adirondack. Now we’re expanding on that design with more decorative variations we’re calling “Oxford Frames”—the traditional name for the frame of this general type first ... continue reading.

Framing D’Arcy Gaw

Posted on June 18th, 2019

With the Robert Tetlow exhibit on display, I’m continuing my series of posts on the theme of framing watercolors with this charming 12″ x 18″ piece by D’Arcy Gaw (1868-1944), called “Carmel Cottage.” The painting is framed close in a ... continue reading.