ANTIQUE FRAMES

antique picture frames
MADE IN ITALY

EXCLUSIVE REPRODUCTIONS OF ANTIQUE FRAMES FOR SALE

Find high-quality reproductions of antique picture frames for sale Made in Italy. We offer several shapes, styles, and finishings accordingly. Any model displayed is a replica of an authentic frame. In fact, our mission is delivering to a vast community of customers antique looking frames for paintings personalized for each artwork. We provide them with three different category prices so that you can go for the category you have the budget for.

Antique frames for paintings are hard to find? Yes, it is not easy to find the perfect antique frame with the right size for your artwork. You could have to search for ages before you would find the sight size of an authentic old frame matching the measures of your painting. Even when you found the size, what about finishing, style, and shape? Would it be exactly the kind of old frame you had in mind? I don’t think so, that’s very unlikely to happen!

BUY TOP QUALITY CUSTOM ANTIQUE FRAMES

Because of the scarcity of antique picture frames with the right size for paintings, carvers and gilders still exist nowadays to create reproduction frames. With great care and knowledge of the ancient techniques, skillful framers can realize reproductions of antique picture frames worth as the originals.

If you own a beautiful artwork and you want to frame it with a lovely old frame, we strongly encourage you to go for one of our replicas of antique frames. You can select it from our vast collection! You will find more than 150 models presented by high-quality photos and detailed descriptions. Personalize them as you prefer and choose among the finishings.

ONLINE ANTIQUE FRAMES WITH DIFFERENT PRICES

For Expensive and affordable reproductions, we created a few product category pages from where you can pick any model, calculate its price based on the painting size, and purchase it straight away. It is a very straightforward process that allows you to buy online on your own.

Find our Exclusive Reproductions of antique picture frames Made in Italy. We realize custom antique frames for sale with the perfect size for your painting.

Follow the link below to see our most expensive reproductions, specially made for important artworks. You will find them split per era, region, and style.

Expensive Reproductions »

We spent years figuring out how to create a collection of custom antique picture frames available for a  reasonable price!

We have achieved our goal by studying new techniques that allow us to realize unique reproduction frames saving time and expensive materials. Click below to see our achievements.

Affordable Reproductions »

Cheap Frames

SELECT AND BUY CHEAP FRAMES

For cheap modern frames and cheap antique frames, we designed a Catalog and a Pricelist with almost 1000 models to pick from. So, if you want to save money, you must download the catalog and price list below. Send us an email to make the order.

CATALOG »

PRICE LIST »

 

CHEAP CUSTOM ANTIQUE FRAMES FOR SALE

We realize cheap antique frames with many shapes. You can buy them in length or custom size. In the catalog, the antique style frames are displayed on the first pages. Beside any model you find the section profile. 

First, you decide if the section width, the rabbet, and other measures are ok for your artwork. Second, you pick between different finishings: they’re all displayed around the frame profile.

We supply inexpensive antique style frames to private collectors and antique dealers. In other words, we’ve created a vast selection of items to enlarge our customers’ community. 

CUSTOM MODERN FRAMES

The catalog displays a considerable number of cheap modern wood picture frames for interior decoration. They are suitable for architects and interior designers because we apply industrial techniques to achieve a massive production at a low price.

There is no minimum order for cheap custom frames, but we strongly advise customers to buy them in bulk to low the oversea shipping cost.

WOOD ANTIQUE FRAMES MOLDING IN LENGTHS

You can buy every frames on the catalog in lengths. Pick the model and check the pricelist. We realize a massive production of wood picture frame moldings in lengths.

No minimum order is required for picture frame moldings in lengths. If you want to lower the shipping price we recommend you to buy a minimum of 10 rods. 

CATALOG CHEAP FRAMES  »

PRICE LIST »

Exclusive Reproductions of
Antique Frames

ANTIQUE PICTURE FRAMES MADE IN ITALY SINCE 1905

We specialize in Italian, French, and Spanish reproductions of antique picture frames made in Italy. In our Gallery, you’ll find Baroque, Rococo, Neoclassical, Empire, and Renaissance styles accordingly.

Follow the link below to know more about the two most significant techniques necessary to realize top quality replicas of antique frames.

Water Gilding
Woodcarving

ANTIQUE FRAMES FOR MUSEUMS

We have been working for several international museums. Between them: MetropolitanNational GalleryBritish MuseumStaatliche MuseenKunsthistorisches.

Why such famous museums use reproductions instead of authentic antique frames made in Italy? Because it’s difficult to find authentic antique picture frames for paintings.

To find an antique picture frame for sale with the right shape and style is not the end of the world. Sometimes it happens. Unfortunately, you never find it with the right size you need. Due to this issue about antique frames our company realized many replica frames for the museums. They order us a frame and thus stop bothering with any size.

THE GREATEST PATINA

Experts in carving and gilding think that our reproductions of antique frames look authentic. Apart from the shape, the carving, and the gilding, what really makes the difference is the “Patina.” 

The word “Patina” defines the tricky process of darkening and aging the gilding. If you look closely at our photos, you will find some tiny broken parts and a few fake wormholes on the gilded surfaces. They’re done on purpose to age the reproductions.

Follow the links below to our Youtube channel to know more about the patina process.

How to antique a gold picture frame
How to rub a reproduction frame
Dark shellac to darken the gold leaf
Final result

Antique frames Styles

ANTIQUE FRAMES STYLES SINCE THE 1300s

Before the 1300s exist just a few examples of frames: they are mostly related to architecture and interiors. So, as our main goal is to talk about frames for paintings, we analyze the styles from the late Middle Ages to the 20th century.

Also, we believe that the 20th century corresponds with the death of art intended as dogmatic and rigid. As a result, 21st-century art is too free and eclectic to be categorized by a few simple styles.

Down below, we describe the main antique picture frame styles that European framers designed over the centuries.

GOTHIC PICTURE FRAMES

The first examples of antique gothic frames are complements of altarpieces of churches and have a structure that recalls Hebrew holy tabernacles. Their typical shapes influenced the north more than the south of Europe.

Antique gothic picture frames developed in Italy at the end of the 1300s. They have been used to frame masterpieces as the polyptych of Vigoroso da Siena and the “Santa Trinita Maestà” of Cimabue.

You won’t find on our website photos of gothic frames because we realize them under commission. We didn’t set up a gallery page displaying our previous works, but we will undoubtedly do it soon. If you need excellent replicas of antique tabernacles for sale, contact us by email.

RENAISSANCE FRAMES

Renaissance style frame recalls classic Roman art. In fact, its real spirit is an in-depth look at the art of the Roman Empire. Most ornamentations of Renaissance style frames come from that period. Even if a mix of new forms characterizes its symbols, Romans were already using most of those decorations a long time ago. In other words, Roman art is the main source of Renaissance ornates.

What is the Italian Renaissance style?

To answer straightforward, we can picture the Italian Renaissance as the end of the dark ages. It’s a new way of perceiving the world, and it emphasizes the rebirth of humanity after years of illnesses and famine.

Renaissance starts in Florence at the beginning of the 15th century in Lorenzo de’ Medici’s court. This man is the beginner of Renaissance culture.

As the style is composed of different phases in time, we can distinguish two main Renaissance frame styles. In the first category, one finds polyptychs, triptychs, diptychs, and altarpieces commissioned by churches. In the second category, one finds Cassetta picture frames decorated with gold leaf and lacquer headed to private collectors.

This website displays many Renaissance frames with the typical Cassetta structure decorated by the gold leaf and the flat central surface lacquered in black.

Check our gallery of Renaissance picture frames

Renaissance frame value

Renaissance frames are essential for antiques because art dealers have the right to commercialize them. Also, you find a fair quantity of models still available on the market. Unfortunately, they are super expensive.

Why are Renaissance picture frames so valuable?

First, because the Renaissance style is ancient. Second, Renaissance frames are a closed number, and some of them are already in museums. It is quite unlikely that they will turn available on the market. For this reason, the price rises.

BAROQUE PICTURE FRAMES

Baroque style frames developed in Europe during the first half of the 17th century, and they are the evolution of Renaissance frames. We can distinguish Baroque frames from other styles for their rich ornamentations and massive structure. Carvers did their work exceeding in virtuosity to create frames that are no longer complementary to the paintings.

Therefore, frames stand out more than paintings, as they are composed of intricate acanthus leaves over their sides. For this reason, decorations and design became too heavy and, metaphorically speaking, could kill the painting. That is why we use the word Baroque, sometimes, to describe a piece of art too rich.

Balance in extremely worked ornates

Nevertheless, the seventeenth century witnessed the growth of extraordinary craftsmanship as well. In other words, the Baroque period gives birth to astonishing frames capable of enriching their paintings by balanced carvings and bright gildings.

For instance, see on our Pinterest board, a good result of a complex Baroque frame. Even though it is extremely rich, it doesn’t suffocate its painting. We expressed, of course, just a point of view and not a dogma. Besides, standpoints change in time depending on many variables: the economy, the availability of materials, etc. 

In short, during the Baroque era, artists push themselves even further than Renaissance artists. As the world had just got out of the ages of darkness (Middle Ages), there was a huge wish to exaggerate the research of wellbeing and richness that started during the Renaissance era. 

Check our gallery of Baroque picture frames

ROCOCO FRAME STYLE

What defines the Rococo style is an exceeding of intricate leaf decorations over the sides. They are quite similar to Baroque ornamentations except for a few differences. First, Rococo style frames have a softer structure. So, generally, they weigh less than Baroque frames. Second, they have ornaments that are not specular.

If you look carefully, you will notice that Baroque-style frames are composed of very centered and specular ornaments over the sides. On the other hand, Rococo frames are made with ornates that run freely around their structures. Thus they’re rich a great balance without even being specular. People tend to confuse the two styles: they’re very similar.

Rococo frames appeared in France around the 1700s. They last until the 1760s so that they lasted much longer than Baroque models. Besides, experts define the Rococo style as a derivation of Baroque art. Rococo frames evolved from the Baroque style, exceeding even more in virtuosity and abundance.

During the Baroque and Rococo eras, carved mirror frames became very common to decor interiors. The new rising bourgeoisie made large use of them to show off their power. Probably that is the reason why the Rococo style evolved through compositions even more complex than Baroque models.

Check our gallery of Rococo picture frames

NEOCLASSICAL PICTURE FRAMES

Neoclassical frames spread over Europe around the 1780s. During that time, Neoclassical art developed after the previous discovery of Pompeii and Herculaneum. Indeed, architects started to study in-depth classical architecture to synthesize the new trend style that would take form with Neoclassicism.

Symmetrical and uncomplicated forms define Neoclassical frames. Carvers and gilders pay more attention to balanced geometry than rich ornamentation. The style in itself is a reaction to the exaggerations of Rococo art, and its central core is the necessity of regaining the ancient harmonious traditions of the classic world.

As the Renaissance did 300 years earlier, Neoclassicism dug deeply into ancient Greco-Roman art to recover the aesthetic balance of traditional ornaments.

It is essential to understand the profound analogy between Roman art, the Renaissance, and Neoclassicism. They’re all linked together by similar purposes, and the style of the ladder consists of a mix of the first two.

Follow the links below to see the similarity between a Renaissance frame and a Neoclassical frame. You will see a parallel in the typical Cassetta structure, the geometry of the forms, and the use of lacquer on the flat central surfaces.

Neoclassical picture frame
Renaissance picture frame

The main difference between the two frames is the color of the paint. Renaissance typically used red, blue, and black paint, while Neoclassical frames are in white lacquer.

Check our gallery of Neoclassical picture frames

EMPIRE ANTIQUE FRAMES

The Empire style is the evolution of Neoclassicism. The connection between the two is so strong that you could have a challenging time distinguishing them. Decorations and symbols remain almost the same; what slightly changes is the general structure of the profiles and the finishes.

The typical shape of Neoclassical frames is the Cassetta flat structure. On the contrary, Empire frames have a deep concave surface to form their profiles. To synthesize, curved moldings are the main elements of Empire profiles, while flat lacquered surfaces determine Neoclassical frame shapes.

The second consistent difference between Neoclassical and Empire antique frames is the finishing. Although the two styles made extensive use of gold leaf, the ladder tends to mix walnut surfaces and gold. So, apart from the structure, you would tell apart the two styles by the red walnut surfaces of the Empire frames.

Empire art is an early 19th-century artistic movement. It started under Napoleon and lasted a couple of decades. Its influence disappeared around 1850 when new style trends took over the traditional ways of art design.

See two typical example of Empire frames:
Empire gilded frame
Empire walnut frame

Check our gallery of Empire picture frames

OTHER STYLES

Since the 1850s, many art movements related to visual arts developed in Europe. We decided to bring all of them together in this last section under the name of Eclecticism because they share one major intent: freedom.

The Eclectic movements that influenced paintings and frames have been created under the logic of mixing ornaments and structures of the past. As a result, artists covered 600 hundred years of history of art, from Gothic to Empire, gathering elements to free art from rules.

The newborn trends are so different that their description would take tough work to do. Dogma, intended as in previous artistic styles, disappeared. For this reason, a new generation of artists was free to create art following instinct and knowledge without any specific rule.

We are still able to find excellent examples of craftsmanship among Eclectic movements. However, the excess of freedom in the creation process leads to results sometimes not very high, compared to previous styles.

RELATED LINKS

Clicking on the links below, you will be able to reach the product gallery pages of the main styles of our reproduction frames. We cover a range of styles that goes from the late 15th century to the early 19th century.

  1. Renaissance picture frames
  2. Baroque picture frames
  3. Rococo picture frames
  4. Neoclassical frames
  5. Empire frames

 

ANTIQUE PERIOD FRAMES 

Down below, you find links to the major period frames that we cover. They are the same frames linked above, but this time categorized by era.

  1. 16th-century picture frames
  2. 17th-century picture frames
  3. Antique picture frames 1800s
  4. 19th-century picture frames
  5. 1920 vintage picture frames

antique frames finishing

HOW DO YOU MAKE A GOLD FRAME LOOK OLD?

The process of aging a frame is done by several tricks that master gilders do following a precise order. The finishing techniques we are referring to, exist since the beginning of the 20th century. Since then, framers have been using reproduction frames to enrich old paintings.

Rubbing out the gilded surface

First of all, you have to rub the gilded surface with steel wool pads. You have to be careful with this first step. You don’t want to rub too much. If you do, you will obtain a gilded surface too distressed. So be careful and try to go step by step. You could even rub the frame a bit more after other steps are finished. This way, you will have a better view of what you’re doing.

Watch a video on our Youtube channel about the technique: Rubbing out the picture frame surface.

Antique frame distressing

This is the second step to age a frame. You will use a couple of stones with different shapes and you’ll hit softly the carvings and the corners. They are supposed to be very ruined as the ones of antique frames.

The secret is to hit gently and gradually the gilding; otherwise, the risk is the same as rubbing too much. You go step by step, slowly, and proceed distressing with little cracks and broken parts all along the sides.

You could even add a few fake wormholes using a nail. Both steps of this process are shown in the videos below:

How to distress a picture frame
How to fake wormholes

Applying several hands of shellac

Shellac is the crucial material when it is a matter of darkening a reproduction frame. It is a natural resin and comes in flakes that have to be dissolved in alcohol 99°. We use it with wood, gesso, real gold, and Dutch gold leaf so that it is product number one when you do framing and restoration.

When shellac is a liquid solution, you’ll notice that it’s very dark on its own. If you melt dark Earth powder and a bit of black powder into it, shellac will become even darker. You now can lay several hands of it upon the gilded surface. This process has to be fast otherwise the shellac dry and you’ll ruin the work. Alcohol, in fact, evaporates quickly and shellac gets dry instantly.

The quantity of hands of shellac one has to apply depends on its density. The denser it is, the less you are going to apply. When you’ve reached the tone you’re looking for, the work is finished. 

Find down below a couple of video showing the shellac and the way you should use the brush:

The color of the shellac
Applying the dark shellac

Antique frames finishings

Follow the links below to see the finishings based on shellac that we realize. All our antique picture frames are Made in Italy and the finishings below are just an example of what we can do.

  1. Silver Picture Frames
  2. Gold Picture Frames
  3. White Picture Frames
  4. Black Picture Frames
  5. Black and Gold Picture Frames
  6. Vintage Silver Picture Frames
  7. Gold Leaf Picture Frames
  8. Walnut Picture Frames

Shape of Antique Frames Made in Italy

RARE ANTIQUE FRAMES FOR SALE

Usually, frames are rectangular or, in a few cases, square. In our production, you will find other kinds of shapes. We listed below the different forms of our antique frames for sale. You’ll find mainly oval, round, and octagonal frames realized with gilded MDF mats.

  1. Antique Round Picture Frames
  2. Antique Oval Picture Frames
  3. Octagonal picture frames

 

Why do we advise customers to go for the giltwood mat? We always recommend an outer square or rectangular structure of the frame because the entire body of the work would be more robust. Ordering one of the above uncommon kinds of frames without the mat would cost more.

Why would a simpler frame cost more than a more elaborated one? Because the amount of work to do is bigger. In fact, manufacturing a flat wood gilded mat is easier than realize an oval frame with complex moldings.

When it is a matter of oval frames the work to do is tough and dangerous. To realize an oval or round custom frame we need to use a spindle molder woodworking machine. As the work is complex the price is high. For this reason, we advise customers to buy our solutions.

If you’re not afraid of buying an expensive frame, you can go for ovals and round custom frames without the MDF mat. Follow the link below to see one of the best examples that we realized.

Round antique frame #094

Custom
ANTIQUE FRAMES for sale

Buy our antique frames for sale as they are the ones which make us distinguish all over the world. We will follow you in each step during the purchase solving any one of your doubts. Remember that we’ve been doing this for more than a century.

ANTIQUE PICTURE FRAMES MADE IN ITALY  

In our collection, which counts more than 150 antique picture frames made in Italy, you can either personalize the lacquer color or the finishing. Also, you can change the shape of the section width. Remember that the essential quality of our reproduction frames is that they are customizable.

Just tell us the size of your painting and we will custom one of our Antique Picture Frames for sale in the best possible way. For any modification mail us before buying. You will get a response within 24 hours with the approval concerning the changes that you are asking for.

Instant Quote

Get a Quote right away. Only for Reproduction frames

Worldwide Shipping

DHL courrier all over the world using tracking numbers and ensurance.

How do I identify an antique frame?

IDENTIFYING ANTIQUE FRAMES

When you are trying to distinguish an antique frame from a fine reproduction you must watch its back. The backs of the reproduction frames usually appear new. Framers don’t do too much work on the backside because it sticks to the wall. The wood, in this case, could be clear and you would instantly understand that it is a reproduction.

Patina on the back of reproduction frames

When you find a replica frame with a good patina on the back, it becomes trickier to distinguish it from an antique frame. If the patina is well made on the front and on the back, you have now to look closely into any detail. Look for pigments on the wood surface applied to darken the wood. If you find it, that’s a sign of falsification.

Here at Laboratorio Federici, for example, to make the back of the frame look even older, we bit it with a stone. Secondly, we rub it, and we use a carpenter’s plane to produce imperfections. As a result, the back of the frame will appear dark, rubbed, and old.

If you have to cope with custom antique frames with a good patina on the front and on the back you will probably buy a replica believing it’s an antique one. That happens all the time.

Water gilding

if you don’t find any detail to recognize a replica in the back, you now have the last chance to identify an authentic antique frame by the gilding.

Antique frames are always gilded with genuine gold leaf. It exists a kind of gilding process called water gilding. You recognize a water gilding by small overlaps of the gold leaves along the gilded surface. If you see them, then water gilding and genuine gold leaf were used. That is a good beginning.

In other words, if you don’t see the overlaps, the frame is probably a replica gilded by Dutch gold leaf. No one used other than real gold leaves until the end of the 19th century.

If you’re so unlucky to find a replica frame gilded by genuine gold leaf with the use of water gilding, it becomes hard to tell it apart from a replica.

Picturing that last scenario, searching by a lens for smaller details is the only chance remained. You must analyze the wormholes, the tiny cracks on the gilded surface, and the type of bole. If all those natural details appear as real, you’re probably analyzing an authentic antique frame.

Important Paintings?

Do you have an important painting to frame? You will find here more than 150 models of exclusive reproductions of antique picture frames for sale Made in Italy. Find them categorized by price, style, and period.

CUSTOM ANTIQUE FRAMES FOR SALE

We think that an excellent reproduction frame can solve all of your problems without any headache! Stop looking for authentic frames to fit your paintings. 

Why would you prefer to buy a reproduction frame? Because we are still excellent craftsmen, skillful as the ones of ancient times. Therefore you would buy a frame as much unique as the antique frames.

There is not much difference between us and a master carver and gilder born during Renaissance time. We haven’t changed so many things in the process of making a beautiful antique frame. The techniques that we use are almost the same and allow us to realize exclusive reproductions. 

See Massimiliano Gurrieri (Master Carver and Gilder) carving a wood frame.

Build a collection of antique frames made in Italy

See the gallery with all the reproductions displayed. Most of our clients get so involved with our reproductions, that after the first order keep on changing all the ugly frames that they owned for decades.

worthy Reproduction frames

Since 1905 the “Laboratorio Federici” is among the most relevant ateliers in Europe manufacturing antique picture frames Made in Italy. The atelier has realized more then 10 thousand frames! What we know for sure is that the majority of antique dealers know well our workshop since it has been founded. 

Frames getting value

Some of our reproductions manufactured at the beginning of the 20th century already have considerable value. Even if they are replicas of older styles, they’ve got a unique taste. In other words, due to the “patina,” and due to the carving, it’s impossible to define their age.

When experts recognize a frame as made from “Laboratorio Federici,” they declare it as a reproduction. But at the same time, they give our frames a high value because of the quality and the excellent work.

instant quote

PRICE CALCULATOR

We offer customers the chance to calculate the price of our antique picture frame for sale instantly. When you click the button “get a quote,” you will land on a calculator page. You have to fill the blank text boxes with your painting measures either in cms or inches. 

Our efficient algorithm will instantly calculate the price of the purchase, including shipping. Now you are ready to pay using your preferred method.

Delivery and pAyment

Expensive antique frames delivery

Delivery is in about 60 days from the order. We use the DHL courier with an insurance service that covers any damage, and we ship all over the world. We use high-quality material to pack the frames to well protect your purchase.

See our policy about shipping.

Cheap frames delivery

Delivery is in about 14 days from the order. We still use  DHL with insurance services. Usually, we ship these products dismounted with an easy system that allows customers to mount them in place. That’s the way to save more than 60% on shipping.

Follow this link on our youtube channel to see our system: Lamello.

Expensive frames payments

You can either pay by wire transfer or by PayPal and credit card. After calculating the price by the calculator page associated with the frame that you intend to order, you can proceed with payment. Then you can mail us the order details as requested along the process of purchasing.

Cheap frames payments

To pay for cheap frames you have first mail us a quote request. You can then either pay by PayPal or wire transfer. As there is not an automatic system to purchase our cheap frames, if you want to use PayPal you must click the link:  PayPal for cheap frames.