Choosing between metal and wooden frames

Photo frames can come in a variety of colours and finishes but by and large there are two types of materials to choose from – metal and wood. Each have advantages and disadvantages so read on to decide which is best for each purpose and right for you. The major difference between these two materials on the surface is their perception. A wooden frame is seen as being a more traditional looking frame and thought of as having a more homely, warm or providing an inviting feel. If you have an older home or perhaps are just a fan of a more traditional décor, these frames will easily integrate into their surroundings. In contrast, metal frames are seen as being more modern and allow one to make a statement with the wider gamut of colours available. They are cold to the touch and the clean straight lines of the frame contribute to their modernity.

For black and white photos, it is best to use a metal frame. However, it is also dependent on the décor and environment. While it would look perfect in a café, it may not be as suitable in a traditional home. Metal frames are also generally lighter than wooden equivalents and may be better if you plan to move around the framed picture often. Wooden frames are perfect for older artworks, regal portraits or even newer oil paintings and the like. They come in a greater range of finishes such as weathered, antique and ornamental so are better adaptable to a variety of pictures and artworks than metal frames. In comparison metal frames are usually only moulded to either a flat or rounded shape.

The durability of both materials differ too. Metal frames are advantageous over wooden frames for being able to withstand warping over time. The more rigid and stronger build is what allows for this and they are less likely to chip. Furthermore, if on the odd occasion that the frame does get damaged, it is possible to only replace the damaged side rather than the whole thing whereas a wooden frame would need to be replaced wholly. However, in more humid climates wooden frames are better suited and any scratches are generally less noticeable.

So those are the main differences between metal and wooden frames which should allow you to make an informed decision between them. Check out our Frame Gallery for our full range of frames.