I sometimes watch customers walk up the road with their freshly framed pictures. Not just because I’m a bit strange, but because I am constantly amazed at how the frames get treated once they leave the shop. Off the customer goes, swinging the frame about and dumping it in the car. Sometimes I can’t bear to look. So without being too prissy, what is the best way to get your new frames from A to B safely? The basics are common sense, or are they? It’s a fine balance when a customer picks something up, you want to advise them, but at the same time you don’t want to come across as patronising. Of course, some of the protection is down to the way the framer packages the item for collection but this can only go so far. Short of giving each customer a metal, bullet proof case to transport each picture in, there are three simple rules that should help:
- Stack multiple pictures glass to glass (front to front). We normally do this for the customer, so that they naturally carry them this way. By stacking the frames “glass to glass”, you ensure that the hooks on the back, do not scratch the front of the other frame.
- Carry using both hands, holding both sides. This is especially important on medium to large pictures. NEVER hold your frame on one side as this may weaken the structure (even if it is strong.) I wouldn’t recommend you hold it by the string or wire either. This is because the stress you place upon the hooks and string is not the same type of stress as when it hangs on the wall. Even if you are careful, it is likely that you are placing unreasonable stress on the fixings. For example, a necklace chain is very strong, but it wasn’t designed for you to constantly tug at it.
- Careful how you place it in the car. This can be so important. With small to medium pictures it’s more obvious; make sure the framed work lays somewhere secure, where it can’t move and don’t put other items on top of it. Please ensure that there are no pressure points underneath the frame i.e. children’s toys as this may damage or distort the frame or even crack the glass. With bigger pictures, it is more difficult. If you have a large flat surface in your car, or it’s a tall vehicle, then it’s a lot easier. Either way, you must make sure the frame is supported properly. In extreme cases, if there is too much “bounce” it could crack the glass or distort the frame. (Obviously, this does depend on the thickness of the glass or how long your journey is etc.)
Normally we would carry the frame to the customer’s car and place it in ourselves. That way we can be satisfied that it has left safely. If you follow these simple rules, then your frames should arrive in one piece. After all, it would be very sad having taken the time and money to get an item frames, to then fall at the final hurdle.