Welcome to our November
Framer's Corner!!
Read here about a design by framer
and designer Heather C.
Framer and Designer Heather C.
We wanted to share with you this unique set of pastel pieces, as well as the process and steps taken when framing art of this kind.

These pieces were brought to us by a customer that was looking to frame and hang them as a set. Heather was up for the challenge of making these pieces that had completely different colors have a cohesive design while still achieving a unique feel for each piece within the set.
Working with Pastels
When working with pastels much caution is taken when handling them. Pastels on paper are like a chalk consistency and are easily blurred, rubbed and damaged. There are a few ways that your pastel can be preserved and protected.
First there is the option to use a fixative spray, however many pastelists choose not to use fixative. This is because pastel is a dry medium and they want to keep it dry, as to not blend or darken the colors of the art. Fixatives are also known to disturb the subtle textures of the pastel pigments. 
Another option is to put it behind glass and to frame it. When framing pastel pieces you must be very careful as to not disturb the pastel texture, very few tools are used when handling them. Another precaution taken when framing pastels has to do with the natural shedding the piece will do over time while hanging on the wall.
In order for the shedding pieces of pastel to not be seen through the frame we create what is called a mat build up. This is where we strip out the matting between artwork and the mat with another piece of skinnier matting (that you can not see from the front), in doing so we create a gab where the pieces of pastel can fall and not been seen.
The Design

These two pieces are both pastels, have organic shapes and compliment each other, but did not match or have the same color palette.
Our customer was looking to have these two pieces hang together as a set. In order to make that work Heather used a triple mat design, adding the color that best matched the individual piece as the only variable factor in the design. She started with a cream colored mat as the bottom, or first mat, this really draws your eye into the beautiful organic pastel shapes and textures, while offering a brightness that is very pleasing to the eye. The second mat was the variable factor for the design and this is where each piece got their matching color. With a 1/4" reveal of the colored mat it adds just the pop of color and helps to ground the piece. The third mat, or top mat is a textured paper mat that has a lot of movement and really compliments the shades and shapes in the art work. All together this triple mat design is the perfet fir for these pieces.

For the final element to this design Heather chose a copper toned, shiny, textured frame from our supplier Larson Juhl. This frame really plays off the texture in the pieces and ties the whole design together.
1706 Brooks Street
Missoula, MT 59801