Framing Tips

We have set up some basic guidelines for the framing of vintage posters:

  1. All vintage posters should be framed using the same conservation methods as on any original artwork.
  2. No vintage poster should be dry mounted, stretched on bars or affixed to another board in a permanent fashion. Although your vintage poster might lay flatter this way, it WILL take away from its resale value.  
  3. If matting is used, it should always be acid free, or conservation matting. The same is true for backing the poster. Directly behind the poster there should be an acid – free barrier. Behind the barrier, we find foamcore to be most effective.
  4. Always use linen, or an acid – free tape to hinge your poster. Do not use masking tape to attach your poster to a mat.
  5. On larger pieces, plexi glass may be preferable to regular glass as it is lighter in weight. However, either glass is fine.
  6. Since many of the vintage posters are rather large, we recommend reinforcing the frame corners. We also DO NOT suggest hanging frames larger than 36x48” with wire. We use hooks that screw into each side of the frame, and suggest using a sturdy nail for each hook. Wire puts stress on the frame corners when the piece is too heavy.
  7. Although artwork should never be hung in direct sunlight, if the room is bright, you might want to consider the benefits of glass with added UV protection.
  8. When a poster is not being matted, the correct way to trim them for framing is:
    • Trim your poster to about ¼ inch after the image (leaving ¼ inch of the canvas showing). That part of the canvas will be hidden under the lip of the frame 
    • The canvas backing is not part of the poster that has value. It is more of a tool to enable handling of the poster.

Never trim a poster's paper, not even the margin! This affects the value of the art directly.

Remember, vintage posters were printed a long time ago. Not all images are registered in a perfectly square fashion. Sometimes this shows up during the framing process. Part of the beauty of a vintage poster is its imperfections!