Picture Framing Weights



In New York Tru Vue sponsored an educational class called Developing Your Competitive Edge conducted by Rob Mankoff, CPF.

I have to say it was an excellent class and Rob’s method of getting to know the class is excellent I have to give Rob 120% for this part of his class, hint never go to a class that Rob is giving without a business card.

Tru Vue had very nice picture framing weights which were being given out as a token of gratitude to those who attended the class, I would loved to have taken four but that would have being greedy, the one I got will make a very nice paper weight for my desk……..thank you True Vue.

These weights reminded me of the weights I made in the earlier days for my workshop.

Tip for making Picture Framing Weights.

I took some scrap glass and cut it to 3 x 4” sizes, I made four little piles out of the cut glass, each pile heavy enough to act as a weight I then wrapped them in layers of Kraft paper and ended up with very nice weights, which I use for unrolling prints, posters, etc.

These weights have got a bit scruffy over the years and do not look very good or as clean as I would like them to look, now I will rewrap them and produce my business logo on the computer put it on a piece of mount/mat board and glue it to the top of the weights which should end up with me adding an other nice little professional looking touch to my business.
We use the glass weights in the shop for holding down hinges as they dry. We have small ones and 2 large weights 3" x 18" x 3" to hold down several hinges at a time.

As for the counter we use plastic ziplock bags filled with play sand. The bag is double baged for safety. The bag is then placed in a white tube sock with a knot at the end. They are soft and will not cut into a print if they are dropped. If the sock is dirty, they are simply taken home and placedd in the laundry.
For the fun of it, I replaced the stufffin' in four beanie babies with copper b-bs. (Say that five times.) They make fun, playful weights for the counter.
In the back room I use a piece of foam board and my tape dispenser.
I do like Dermot--take some scrap glass invarious sizes from teeny weeny 2x2 to rather large 6 x 6, stack em up, tape the edges really well, and "voila" free weights.

For funny, in front of the customer stuff I went to Gateway Computer store, got them to give me free two Gateway cows and tore their guts out and filled them with lead shot. totally cool and superheavy little floppy cows now can weight customers' stuff in the retail area while my wrapped glass weights areused in the backroom
I use very large washers (4,4 1/2 & 5" dia., 1/4" thick) covered with felt when I need something heavy. I got them at an industrial supply place.
Hey, this is fun!

I bought about 200 heavy-duty balloons. I was going to fill them with sand, but I used steel shot instead. It took me 3 hours (1 Packer game) to fill the 200 ballons. I was afraid that old baloons, like old rubber bands, would get brittle and crumble, but it's been a couple years and, so far, so good. I have a large magnet standing by just in case.

Kids find these weights irresistible (Wisconsin children are easily amused) so I'd be afraid that Beanie Babies or Gateway cows would disappear very quickly.

The only drawback to these is that they are rather obscene-looking, but I'm probably the only one that sees that. Maybe I'll post a picture and see what you think.


I know someone is going to ask why I need 200 weights when I work alone. I have little boxes of them everywhere in the workshop as well as the design counter. They're very handy.

Keep in mind, if you get a hankerin' to hurl a few of your balloons (or is it baloons, ie., words I can't spell) out the door at the road workers, I would empty the shot and fill them with water.

That way, if they catch you, they might only hurt you
instead of kill you!!

Ha!! After reading your post, Tom, I went back and looked at mine and discovered I had spelled 'balloon' three different ways. I'm pretty sure ONE of 'em is right!

I'm going to leave it alone. I think it displays what Jeff Foxworthy would call "a glorious lack of sophistication."

A good way to remember how to spell balloon is to think of the "l's" as strings and the "o's" as balloons. Then you will always spell it correctly!

The supermarket across from my shop has an adorable collection of beany babies and I have been LOOKING for an excuse to buy some (I collect stuffed animals-of the plush variety). I think I will fill them with sand. They will make a nice addition to my velour covered 1 lb lead weights that customers keep trying to smell cause they think they are potourri.

What great ideas you grumblebums come up with!

We used to be next door to a party shop and the owner used balloons filled with sand or rocks as anchors for the ones filled with helium. I love the idea about using weighted stuffed animals. Right now I use my tape measure and the sample boxes of those decorative corners you put on metal frames at the design counter. In the work room, I use back issues of Decor and PFM as weights. If I need a small weight, I use the box of points on a scrap of mat.
I would like to elaborate on Dermots suggestion and add a piece of suede mat glued on the top and bottom of the weights. Makes a nice soft landing when putting them on artwork.
For a few years I had been looking for some paperweights, to hold posters and prints that were rolled up for a time, flat on the worktable. Most glass weights were in the 25 to 50 dollar range. I thought that rather extravagant just to keep things flat.
We were invited to a neighbor's family picnic at Selkirk Shores on Lake Ontario; on the way we stopped at a roadside stand to pick up some pies and breads that were sold there. They had this basket filled with flat rocks that had little eyes attached, were signed by the artist and poly coated. I thought, what a neat idea for a paperweight put a piece of moleskin on the bottom they would work perfect. I bought 4, after the lady at the stand told me they were done by a 75-year-old man from that area. We arrived at the picnic site, played some volleyball, had some lunch, sat around and talked with friends, then went for a walk down to the lake, passing through the sand dunes we came to the beach, my wife held out her arm as if to save me from a speeding car and said " tom don't look, there has to be about a million of those stones on the beach" I think Dermot, Osgood & Lance E might call them shingles. I looked around and none of them had eyes or were signed in any manner so I took mine back to the shop and have had quite some conversations about them with my customers. tdavis
At the shop I managed, we had some leather weights that our LJ had given us that were great! We promptly replaced most of our glass weights, which were getting kind of shot anyway. Of course, the new weights were so attractive-looking, wouldn;t you know, we lost two of them right away! Am curious why someone would take a weight...LOL.

At my own shop, I realized I was going to need some weights soon, and I knew I didn't want to go with glass. I have seen it happen to many times when a customer picks it up and drops it on her art work YIKES! I did like the leather weights from LJ, but they were about $40+ for the set of 4 I think, and didn't want to throw the money away on something trivial. What I did instead was hit the local Michael's Crafts (I know, I know), and picked up a couple sheets of craft suede, a matching color of embroidery floss, and some sand. I cut the suede into 3 1/2 x 4 inch squares, and made four weights with them, sewing the pieces together with the embroidery floss and filling with sand. They work beautifully, and are a nice addition to my counter. The only thing I would have done differently would have been to fill a baggie with the sand before putting into the suede. So far, no leakage, but if you look between the layers and stitches, there are some small sand grains. So far been lucky, and nothing ended up on customer's work. Will have to make some new ones soon.
Oooooooohhhhhhhh!!!! :eek:
did you say..... Michaels ???????
(sorry, I just can't behave myself) ;)
Love all those great ideas for weights! We too use the LJ leather weights, all the customers love them and miraculously none have disappeared yet. And they make lovely symmetrically-shaped indents in our drymounted prints when we forget to take them off before closing the vacuseal (not that I've ever done that lol). Boxes of framers points are great for smaller jobs, but now you've all got me thinking of more creative paperweights... just what I needed, another distraction at work :rolleyes: :cool:
I've seen Ron's balloons, baloons, ballons...they do look lethal but work. Reminded me of my days of shot-put.

Working at home I have an old set of encyclopedias that work great. I put a piece of matboard or foam core over the piece and stack the encyclopedias on top.