Find here high-quality reproductions of antique picture frames for sale Made in Italy in several shapes, styles, and finishings. Any model displayed on the site is a replica of an authentic frame. 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 painting are hard to find? Yes, it is not an easy task fo find the perfect antique frame with the right size for your painting. You can search for ages before you find the sight size of an authentic old frame matching the measures of your artwork. But what about finishing, style, and shape? Was really that kind of old frame what you were looking for? That’s very unlikely to happen!
Because of the scarcity of fine authentic antique picture frames with the right size for paintings, Master carvers and Master Gilders still exist at the beginning of the XXI century to create reproduction frames. With a great care and a vast knowledge of the ancient techniques, skillful framers are still able to realize reproductions of antique picture frames worth as the originals.
If you own a beautiful artwork and you want to frame it with a nice old frame, we strongly encourage you to go for one of our beautiful replicas of antique frames. You can select one between our vast collection! You will find on the website more than 150 models presented by high-quality photos and detailed descriptions. Personalize our models as you prefer and choose among the several finishings we are offering to customers.
For Expensive and affordable reproductions, we create 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.
For cheap modern picture frames and cheap antique frames, we created a Catalog and a Pricelist because they are together more than 1000 models. So if you want to buy an inexpensive picture frame, you must download the catalog and price list and send us an email to make the order.
Find here 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.
We spent several years figuring out how to create a collection of custom antique picture frames available for a very reasonable price!
We have achieved our goal studying new techniques that allow us to realize exclusive reproduction frames saving time and expensive materials. Click below to see our achievements.
To reach the majority of possible customers, we realize a production of cheap antique frames in several styles and shapes. We either sell them in length or custom size. In the catalog, the antique style frames are displayed on the first pages while the modern picture frames come after. Besides any cheap frame model, we show its section profile. You can then decide if the section width, the rabbet, and other measures are ok for your artwork. You can buy frames with different finishings, and they’re all displayed around the main frame profile.
We supply cheap antique style frames to private collectors and antique dealers. Between cheap antique picture frames, there are, in fact, some very handy for old paintings as well. We’ve created a vast selection of inexpensive frames to enlarge the community of our customers because our mission is to reach people of every gender, class, and age. Our goal is to build a brand that can be a reference for any picture frame.
Our catalog displays together with cheap antique looking frames a considerable number of cheap modern wood picture frames for interior decoration. They are particularly suitable for architects and interior designers as they usually deal with contemporary interiors. We manufacture modern moulding frames by semi-industrial techniques to achieve a massive production at a very affordable 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.
We try hard to make every one of our customers happy, offering all types of prices! That is why, apart from the custom framing service, we realize a massive production of wood picture frame moldings in lengths.
No minimum order is required for picture frame moldings in lengths, but we want to give a smart advice: try to buy a minimum of thirty meters (about 10 rods) to reduce the oversea shipping price. For purchasing delivered within Europe, there is a flat rate shipping cost of 50 euro, while for deliveries out of Europe, the flat rate shipping cost is 99 euro.
Download CATALOG and PRICE LIST below.
We specialize in Italian, French, and Spanish Reproductions of Antique Picture Frames Made in Italy since 1905. In our Gallery, you’ll find Baroque, Rococo, Neoclassical, Empire and Renaissance styles. These styles have a significant role in the field of antique frames for old master paintings. We deliver unique reproductions because we put in practise the most difficult ancient techniques.
See below the two most significant techiniques necessary to realize top quality replicas of antique frames.
To the question about how happened to be that such famous museums use Reproductions instead of the original antique picture frames made in Italy, there is just a simple answer. It’s almost impossible to find in the market beautiful antique picture frames that can fit properly with the old master paintings owned by the museums.
Most of the time, you can find the antique picture frame for sale with the right shape and style. It is anyway improbable that it would have at the same time the right size for the painting. Due to this big problem with the size of antique frames, the “Laboratorio Federici,” which is the corresponding Italian name of the company NowFrames, has framed a considerable number of paintings for the major museums all over the world. They order us a frame and after 60 days receive one of our unique reproduction perfect for their painting.
Even the most careful glance of experts in carving and gilding can’t recognize that around the painting, there is a reproduction of an antique frame made by us. Beside the shape, the carving, and the gilding, what really makes the difference in our models is the “Patina.” That is the Italian term to define the tricky process of darkening and aging the frames. If you look closely our photos you will find some little broken parts and a few fake wormholes on the gilding surface. Those are tricks and are all part of the procedure of aging our reproductions.
Follow below the links to our Youtube channel to know more about the patina process.
The history of art is full of styles related to paintings. So frames, as complements of old paintings, were influenced by the art styles that developed in the past from the 1200s and 1900s. We are talking about 700 years of art styles that were created from the major artists who were embracing any one of them.
Before then, the 1300s exist just a few poor examples of picture frames, so that’s why we start from the Middle Ages to analyze the frame styles which spread over Europe until the 20th century. We believe that the end of the 20th century corresponds with the death of art styles intended as dogmatic and premises set of rules. In the 21st century, in fact, art is too free and too eclectic to be categorized as ancient periods were.
Down below in this section, we describe the main antique picture frame styles that influenced the majority of master carvers and gilders all over western, north, and south Europe.
The first example of antique gilded frames appears in history around the 13th century. They were used for framing altarpieces for churches. They are indeed called tabernacles as they’ve got the particular structure that reminds to Hebrew religious tabernacles. Those kinds of frames belong to a style labeled Gothic. The gothic style influenced all north Europe and part of the south with its typical shapes and forms.
Antique gothic picture frames appear in Italy at the end of the 1300s. They have been used to frame master altarpieces as the polyptych of Vigoroso da Siena, an Italian painter active at the end of the 13th century. Another excellent example of a framed Gothic altarpiece is the painting “Santa Trinita Maestà” of Cimabue. It is dated around c. 1290–1300.
You won’t find on our website pictures of antique gothic picture frames as we realize them just under commission. We didn’t set up a gallery page displaying our works, but we will undoubtedly do it soon. If you need excellent replicas of gothic picture frames, contact us and tell us your ideas.
Renaissance frames are essential in the field of antiques because they can be commercialized, and there is still a right quantity of them available on the global market. Especially in Italy, you will find a consistent number of antique dealers who have quite a few models to sell. Unfortunately, they are very expensive.
Why are Renaissance picture frames so expensive? Because the Renaissance is an art style gone and it can’t come back for sure. The Renaissance frames are a closed number, some of them are already in museums, and it is quite unlikely that will turn available on the market in the future. So as there is a limited number of beautiful Renaissance picture frames, dealers ask for them a bunch of money.
What is the Italian Renaissance style? To answer pretty straightforward this question, we can say that the Italian Renaissance is the end of the dark ages (Middle Ages) and consists of a time where art was reborn after years of illnesses, pestilence, and famine all over Europe. Renaissance starts in Florence since the beginning of the 15th century in the court of Lorenzo de’ Medici. This man is recognized as a beginner of Renaissance culture.
Renaissance style frame recall in their specific shapes classic Roman art. The entire spirit of Renaissance, in fact, is an in-depth look at what was before the fall of the Roman Empire. The majority of ornamentations of Renaissance style frames come from there. Sometimes they are mixed up with new form, innovative symbols, but in the complex, most of them were already used during Roman periods.
As Renaissance is composed of different phases, we can talk about two main categories of Renaissance frame styles. The first category is made of polyptychs, triptychs, diptychs, and altarpieces related to churches. The second category is made of artworks that were headed to private collectors. In between this category, we can find a significant number of different Cassetta picture frames decorated with genuine gold leaf and lacquer.
In this website, you will find several Renaissance frames with the typical Cassetta structure, with the gold leaf gilding and the flat central surfaces lacquered in black, dark blue and red paint.
Baroque style frames develop in Europe during the first half of the 17th century. We can distinguish Baroque frames from all other frame styles primarily because of their rich ornamentations and massive structure. Carvers did their work exceeding in virtuosity to create pieces of art that are no longer complementary to the paintings. In fact, they would subside the importance of the painting as the syle is usually composed of a variety of intricate acanthus and fruit leaves spread around the sides of the square structure. So all together, decorations and structure could become too heavy and, metaphorically speaking, kill the painting. That is why we use the word Baroque, sometimes, to describe a piece of art extremely heavy and exaggerated.
Nevertheless, the first half of the seventeenth century witnessed the growth and development of an extraordinary sample of craftsmanship, that in many cases, would fit perfectly with the artworks to frame, enriching them with balanced carvings and bright gildings.
See an example on our Pinterest board of a beautiful Baroque frame that could be a bit too much worked for matching its internal painting: Baroque painting frame example. This is of course just a point of view and not a dogma. Beside, standpoints change in time depending on many variables: the economy, the availability of materials, and so on. During the Baroque era, when the world had just got out of the ages of darkness (Middle Ages), there was a huge wish to reach the maximum level of wellbeing and richness. Nowadays, that could be a bit in contrast with the new global economic crisis.
What defines the Rococo style is an exceeding of intricate acanthus leaves as decorations. They are quite similar to Baroque ornamentations except for a few differences. First, Rococo style frames have a softer structure, so generally, they weight less than Baroque picture frames. Second, they are characterized by gentler ornaments, which are not specular as Baroque ornamentations.
If you look carefully, you will notice Baroque style frames composed of very centered and specular ornaments all over the four sides of the frame. Rococo frames instead are composed of ornamentations and leaves that run freely aside from the main structure. They’re rich a great harmony without being specular. This is the reason why the two styles are confused as the same style.
Rococo frames start to appear in France since the 1630s and last until the 1760s so that they lasted much longer than Baroque models. Besides, the Rococo frame is defined as a derivation of the Baroque style. They evolved, exceeding even more in the virtuosity of decorations and carvings. Eventually, the complexity of the decoration built along the sides, reached a composition of carvings not anymore softer and thinner as in the beginning, until they have become even more massive than Baroque models.
See an example on our Pinterest board of a typical Rococo mirror frame: Rococo example.
Neoclassical frames appeared for the first time in Europe around the 1780s. That is the time when Neoclassical art develops in Europe after the previous discovery of Pompeii and Herculaneum. Architects started to study in-depth the classical architecture to synthesize the new trend style that would take form with the name of Neoclassicism.
Neoclassical frames as a complement of the paintings are defined by symmetry and simple forms with a major focus on the geometry than the ornaments. The style in itself is a reaction to the exaggerations of Rococo art, and its central core is determined by the necessity of regaining the ancient harmonious traditions of the classic world. As the Renaissance did 300 years earlier, with the full reaction to Gothic art, Neoclassicism dug deeply into ancient Greco-Roman art to recover the aesthetic balance of classic ornaments.
It is essential to understand the profound analogy existing between the classical world, the Renaissance, and the Neoclassicism. They’re all linked together by similar purposes, and the style of the ladder consists of a mix of the first two styles. Follow the links below to see the similarity of a Renaissance frame and a Neoclassical frame. You will be able to see a similarity in the typical Cassetta structure, the geometry of the forms, and the use of lacquer for the flat central surface.
The main difference between the two frames is the color of the lacquer. Renaissance typically used red, blue, and black while Neoclassical frames were lacquered with white.
The Empire style is the evolution of Neoclassicism. The connection between the two is so strong that you could have and hard time to distinguish them. Decorations and symbols remain almost the same; what slightly change is the geometry of forms and the finishes.
The typical shape of Neoclassical frames was the Cassetta flat structure, while Empire antique frames have a deep concave surface to form their specific cassetta shape. So, to synthesize, in Empire frames, curved moldings are the main element to define their form, while Neoclassical picture frames instead were made of flat lacquered surfaces.
The second consistent difference between Neoclassical frames and Empire antique frames is given by the finishes. Although the two styles made extensive use of gold leaf, the ladder is prominently made by the use of polish walnut surfaces. So apart from the slight difference in the structure, you would instantly tell a part Neoclassicism from Empire style by the red walnut surfaces of the Empire antique frames.
Empire art is an early 19th-century artistic movement that started under Napoleon and lasted a couple of decades. Its influence went on until 1850 when new style trends took over the traditional ways of developing art design.
From the 1850s to the beginning of the 19th century, the styles related to architecture, visual and decorative arts that developed in Europe were many. We decided to bring all them together in this section because they are linked by a single common denominator: Eclecticism.
The several art movements that influenced paintings and frames have been created under the logic of recover and mix plenty of ornaments, symbols, shapes, and structures of the past, from Gothic to Empire, covering 600 hundred years of history of art, and gathering them all together in unique artworks. The trends that developed during this space of time are so different that to describe and distinguish them, would take a longer time compared to the most straightforward task of displaying the few styles developed during the 600 hundred years before.
In between them, we can recognize excellent examples of artworks. Still, due to the freedom from strict rules and dogma, those art movements are either mostly characterized by decorative arts even heavier than Baroque and Rococo or artworks made without the precise knowledge of harmonious and balanced forms of the ancient styles. In conclusion, we did choose to avoid the hard classification of any one of those movements, and we preferred putting them together under the name of Eclecticism art.
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 late 15th century to early 19th century.
Down below you find the major period frames that we cover
The process of making a frame look old is done by several tricks that Master gilders put in practice following an exact order. The finishings techniques we are going to talk about here existed since the beginning of the 20th century when reproduction frames became a new conception of framing an old painting.
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 rub too much, at the end of the patina process, you will obtain a gilded surface too much distressed. So be careful with this, and try to go step by step. You could even rub the frame a little bit later after other actions are taken so that you can have a better view of what you’re doing.
Watch a video on our Youtube channel to see how delicate is this technique: Rubbing out the picture frame surface.
This is the second step to go through to make a gold frame look old. You could do it in several ways, but the most used is to find a couple of stones with different shapes and try to hit softly the edges of the carvings and the four corners of the frame, which are supposed to be very ruined in 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, unless you are a skillful gilder, and proceed distressing with little cracks and broken parts the four sides of the frame.
If you like, you could even add a few fake wormholes using a long nail. Both steps of this process are shown in the videos below:
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°. It is compatible with wood, gesso, real gold, and Dutch gold leaf so that it is the product number one when you do framing and restoration.
When shellac is correctly dissolved in alcohol, and you get a liquid solution, you will see that it is very dark on its own. If you melt into it a bit of dark Earth powder and a bit of black powder, you will then get a very dark solution, but still liquid. You now have to lay several hands of it upon the gilded surface, trying to be pretty fast; otherwise, the shellac can dry during the process, and you will ruin your work. Alcohol, in fact, evaporates very fast, and because of that, the shellac gets dry instantly.
The hands of shellac to apply depends on its density. The denser it is, the less you are going to use on the surface. When you have reached the color tone that you’re looking for, you are done. Find down below a couple of video showing the color of the shellac to apply and the way you should use the brush:
Follow the links below to see all the kinds of finishings that we realize. All our antique picture frames are Made in Italy. The links to the finishings below are just an example of what we can do to satisfy the main client’s desires.
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 wood mats.
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 for the same price. Order one of the above uncommon specified frames without the mat would cost the same.
Why would a thinner and a simpler frame cost equal to a more elaborated one? Because the amount of work to realize both is equal. Why is it equal? Because the manufacturing of a flat and oval wood gilded mat is easier than the realization of an oval frame with elaborate moldings.
The work to do is complicated and quite dangerous at the same time. To realize an oval or round custom molding frame with the perfect size of a painting, you need to use a spindle moulder woodworking machine that could be hard to use. We use it when necessary without any problem, but we always try to address our customers to save money. If they go for what we recommend, they will surely buy a better product at a lower price.
Follow a link to one of our antique round frames build without a wood mat. We can realize it on the given size of our customer’s paintings: Round antique frame #094
We strongly recommend you to 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.
In our vast collection, which counts more than 150 antique picture frames made in Italy, you can personalize the lacquer color of anyone, and you can ask for a particular finishing. Also, you can change the shape of the section width into the one that you like most. As we entirely produce the frames, we can intervene in any step of manufacturing as the customer wants. The essential quality of our reproduction frames is that they are available in any size.
Just tell us the size of your painting, and we will custom one of our Antique Picture Frames for sale in the best way possible for you. For any change that you require mail us before buying. As a result, you will get a response within 24 hours with the approval concerning the changes that you are asking for.
The first distinction to make when we are trying to identify an antique frame is to be able to distinguish it from modern frames. Using just a couple of words to make clear this distinction, we can say that the antique frames, contrarily to the modern ones, are quite rich in decorations and, most of the time, gilded. Everybody notices the difference between the structures, the style, and the finishings of the two. With that in mind, we now have to learn how to distinguish antique frames from high-quality reproduction frames. That is the major issue related to this topic.
The most important thing to do when you are trying to identify an antique frame and distinguish it from a fine reproduction is to turn the frame and look at its back. The backs of the reproduction frames usually appear new. Framers don’t do too much work on the backside of the frame because it sticks to the wall. The wood, in this case, could be quite clear, and you would instantly understand that it is a reproduction.
When you find a replica frame with a good patina on the back, it becomes easy to change it for an original antique frame. If the patina is well made on the front and the back, you have now to look closely into any detail. If you are an expert, you will see on the back of the frame a painted wood. Usually, framers paint the clear surface with antique color pigments that make it look like older and darker than what it is.
Here at Laboratorio Federici, for example, to make the back of the frame look even older, we use different kinds of stones to bit the wood surface. We rub it, and we use a carpenter’s plane to produce some imperfections on the flat surfaces. After that tricky process, the back of the frame will look dark, rubbed, and very old.
If you have to cope with custom antique frames with a good patina on the front, and good patina on the back and you are not an expert antique dealer, you will probably buy a replica for an antique one. That happens all the time.
if you didn’t find any detail to recognize a replica looking the back o the frame, you now have the last and most challenging chance to identify it by looking at the gilding.
The authentic antique frames are always gilded by genuine gold leaf with the use of a process called water gilding. If you know the difference between a water gilding and an oil gilding, you’ll be able to see on the water gilded surface of an antique frame some small overlaps of the gold leaves. If you see them, then water gilding and genuine gold leaf were used, and that is a good beginning.
So first thing you look for, the little gold leaf overlaps. If you don’t see them, 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. So now you know you have in your hands a reproduction.
If you are that unlucky to have found a top-quality replica frame with gold leaf water gilding very well made and with a good patina in the back, it becomes difficult to recognize that it is a replica even for experts.
Now you have to search by a lens for smaller details like wormholes, tiny cracks on the gilded surface, and for the kind of bole was used. Those are all part of the natural aging process of the old frames. It is hard to see and recognize them, but if you do, it is now probable that you are analyzing an original antique frame.
Do you have an important painting to frame? You will find here more than 150 models of exclusive reproductions of antique picture frames Made in Italy. Find them categorized by price, style, and period.
YOUR CUSTOM ANTIQUE FRAME FOR SALE
We think that an excellent Reproduction frame can solve all of your problems without any headache! A Reproduction frame can’t be compared to a shallow industrial copy of an old master painting. Here is why. An old master painting was made by an artist while an antique picture frame was created by a master carver and gilder. There would be a slight difference between an artist and a good craftsman, even if the craftsman lived five centuries ago.
So here comes the difference: we are still excellent craftsmen as in ancient times, but we are not so sure about all the factories out there making copies of very famous paintings inflating the whole market.
Due to this, I feel free to say that 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 since ancient times. The techniques used are almost the same and give us the great advantage of being able to realize beautiful reproductions. See, for example, Massimiliano Gurrieri (Master Carver and Gilder) in action in this video.
See the main gallery with all the reproductions displayed. Don’t go mad looking for authentic antique picture frames with the right size for your painting. You would look forever!
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.
Since 1905 the “Laboratorio Federici” is between the most relevant ateliers in Europe for antique picture frames Made in Italy. Maybe it can have even realized more then 10 thousand! What we know for sure is that the most recognized antique dealers know very well our workshop since it has been founded.
Some of our reproductions manufactured at the beginning of the 20th century already have considerable value. Even if they are still replicas of styles much older, they’ve got a unique taste. Because of the “patina,” and because of the beautiful carving, which makes them look authentic, it’s now almost impossible to define their age.
When a few of the experts out there 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 due to the quality and the excellent work.
We offer to customers the opportunity to calculate the price of our antique picture frame for sale instantly. When you click the button “get a quote”, you will land to a friendly page with blank text boxes to be filled out. You have to fill them with the two most important measures of your painting. They are Hight size and Large size, which can be expressed either in cm or inches.
When you hit the button calculate, our efficient algorithm will instantly respond with the total price of your purchasing, including the shipping price. When you know the price, you will then be free to order the frame and paying by the methods that you prefer.
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 so that it doesn’t frequently happen significant damages. See our policy about shipping.
Delivery is about in 14 days from the order. We still use DHL with an insurance service. Usually we ship these productus dismounted with an easy system that allows customers to mount them in place. That’s the way to save more then 60% in shipping for cheap frames. Follow this link on our youtube channel to see our system: Lamello.
You can either pay by wire transfer or by PayPal and credit card. After calculated the price by the calculator page associated to 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.
To pay cheap frames you have first mail us requesting for a quote. You can then either procced with the payment by PayPal or wire transfer. As there is not an automatic system to purchase our cheap frames, tu pay them by PayPal you must click on the fallowing link: PayPal payments.