These days, it’s hard to imagine planning a wedding without spending upwards of £10,000. And while smaller events such as retirement parties, anniversary celebrations, bar and bat mitzvahs, and baby showers tend to cost less, they can still come with a great deal of planning, preparation, and big-day panic.
Putting together a fantastic event, in other words, is no mean feat. Which is why when it comes to dreaming up that perfect keepsake from the day, we can often resort to the easiest option. At big events such as weddings and milestone birthdays it’s common for presents to be big and flashy. But the truth is, most of us simply want a gift that will remind us of the magic of the day. Enter: the signature picture frame.
Despite what you might think from the name, a signature picture frame isn’t one bearing your name or personalised with a specific design. In fact, it’s a large, simple frame that contains an oversized mount, surrounding a smaller-than-usual picture in the centre. The purpose for this mount? To allow space for all the guests at your event to write their own special messages. In other words, it’s a keepsake that you will truly cherish.
Where can I get a signature picture frame?
At EasyFrame we make it incredibly easy to order a customised signature picture frame. Visit our Picture Frames & Mounts page and you can enter the size you need, and then get started on planning that perfect mount. We give you the opportunity to alter the size of your mount down to the last millimetre, and pick out your perfect shade from a range of beautiful colours, giving you a preview of what the finished frame will look like the entire time. You can even double up on mounts, meaning that your central image gets a border of its own. From there you’ll get to choose your frame style and glazing, and order your frame, which will be dispatched within just three days.
We can even offer a multi-aperture option, where you can place several different images within one mount and frame. The only thing we can’t do ourselves are the signatures!
What makes the perfect signature picture frame?
There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to designing your signature picture frame; however, you should bear in mind a few practical issues. As your guests will need to write on the mount, you should use a matte material that will take on the ink easily. You should also choose a mount in a light shade such as white, ivory, cream, blush pink, baby blue or mint green, so that the ink will show up. Of course, if you’re feeling a bit more adventurous you could select a black mount and have your guests leave messages in gold or silver metallic ink!
When deciding on size, try to take into account the number of guests you have and the kinds of messages that you want people to leave you may, for instance, have a smaller number of guests, but encourage them to write longer messages! Usually the mount will need to be at least 100mm wide on all sides to accommodate signatures.
As for the frame itself? Again, it’s up to you. But remember that the signatures and the central image should remain the focus. Usually a fairly narrow frame in black, white, natural wood or gold will work well. For glazing, opt for a material that is UV resistant, as this will protect against fading. Lastly, don’t forget that a signature picture frame doesn’t have to include a photograph it could be a poster or a flyer from a big event in your life that was particularly special to you. The closing night of a concert or theatre run can be the perfect time to frame a poster from the show and get everyone signing!
How do I get my guests to sign my frame?
The easiest thing to do is to set up a table near the entrance to your event (a common feature of most weddings). For the purposes of the signing, request the frame without glazing (or in the case of an EasyFrame purchase, remove the glazing), and set up the frame in a stable position a safe distance from any food or drink. One practical option is to set up an artist’s easel and prop the frame on that, making sure that you secure it in place at the back.
Before the event starts, ask a couple of people to leave messages to give your other guests an idea of what they can write, and then over the course of the evening nudge everyone else to get involved. It can be a good idea to test out a pen on a small area of the mount either on the back, or on a scrap piece from the framers. If the pen writes well on the mount, leave it out for your guests to use. That way, each signature will be written in the same ink and is guaranteed to look good.
What do I do with the finished frame?
At the end of the event, you can return your frame to the framing shop to be finished. If you’ve ordered from EasyFrame you can simply replace the glazing and start deciding where to hang it!
Don’t forget that a signature frame can also make a fantastic gift. If you’re organised (and sneaky) enough, you can arrange for the signing to take place behind the scenes at your loved one’s big event. Take the frame away at the end of the night, add the finishing touches, and wrap it up it’ll make for an incredible, and truly memorable, present.