Framing and Preservation
The other day I went for a great cup of tea at a local coffee shop, and I met up with a great gal who owns the Fast Frame shop accross the street. Tami has been in the framing business for 15 years now, and she knows her stuff. We talked for a couple hours about all sorts of things, business, future objectives, even politics.
What I found very interesting were the aspects of preservation from her perspective, as someone who deals with things that are less fragile, but have to be kept in top condition, and must be framed to accomplish this (sports memorabilia, jerseys, etc.) as well as pieces that are old and extremely fragile.
Tami explained that there are multiple levels to creating an archival quality framing job. These include the backing, the matting, the glass and the frame. She explained that the worst thing you can do for a priceless or irreplaceable document or photograph is to put it in a target frame with a cardboard backing, being pressed up against the acidic cardboard will quickly diminish the quality of the piece. She also explained that that the mat and the glass have to be arranged so that there is a layer of air between the photograph, memento or document and the protective glass. She explained, “Of course, if you frame a jersey and you press it up against glass it is going to start molding.”
Among her numerous qualifications, Tami has attended a Minneapolis Institute of Arts course in preservation and archiving. Among her many beautiful framing examples, this is one of my favorites:
Tami explained the difficulties in preparing this 100 year old baptismal gown for framing. The delicate fabric was nearly impossible to handle or manipulate, it was worn thin from generations of use.
But the family can now proudly display the gown for generations to come because of Tami’s terrific work! More examples can be found on Tami’s Fast Frame Page on Facebook and also on the company website.