As the title suggests, conservation framing refers to the methods and materials that are used for the specific purpose of protecting and preserving the framed article against damage and deterioration.

The range of ‘archival grade’ framing materials available today is extensive. These include all the internal components that come into contact with the artwork, such as hinging tapes, acid free mounting and backing boards, and a full suite of glass or acrylic options.

These glazing options have been developed to provide 99% UV protection for your artwork, which is critical in order to prevent gradual fading and discolouration. Another unique quality included in the glazing range is a product with complete reflection control, without losing any clarity. The finished frame literally appears as though there is no glass there at all. (It needs to be seen to be believed!).

The extent of archival materials required will depend on the item being framed. It is certainly strongly recommended for such things as :

  • Original artworks – watercolours, etchings, sketches, Ltd Edition prints.
  • Antique prints, maps, hand coloured botanical drawings and bird prints.
  • Documents and letters – old or new- especially with hand written ink.
  • Family photographs, particularly older ones and Gelatin Silver prints.
  • Delicate embroideries, lacework, and cross stitches.

We also recommend that UV protection glass or acrylic should be considered on all framing jobs, even where the other archival materials are not necessary. Everything you frame is susceptible to UV deterioration. There never used to be an option for UV protection until quite recently, but now that this technology exists, it seems an obvious choice to use it. It brings added peace of mind.


It is often the case that items requiring conservation framing are already old, delicate or in a state of disrepair. The most common ‘symptoms’ are:

  • mould damage / water damage due to dampness or poor storage
  • Foxing – this appears as small brown spotting on the paper
  • Acid burn – discolouration caused by inferior mounting and backing boards that are in contact with the artwork
  • Tears or surface damage to paper or canvas
  • surface dirt and ageing – requiring professional cleaning

It is important to address these issues and neutralise their effects before going on to frame the artwork. In many cases, the cleaned and restored item is vastly improved by the process.

Framed By You has access to trusted and qualified conservators, and we can provide quotations for cleaning, repair and restoration.