Renting Frames???

stud d

SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Jun 17, 2003
next too you
I would first try to have thier work framed in a way that is appropriate for the work. If that can't be done, I have been thinking about some ways to help artists frame their work a bit cheaper.This would be for my gallery and in house only. Tell me what you think.

There is a company that allows one to buy a wood frame that is put together with metal hardware (same hardware as Nielson). They offer 5 or 6 finishes, maple, ash, cherry, black, and walnut (I believe that is correct). I was thinking of buying about a dozen 16x20 frames. I would buy the walnut, because that would match my the interior of the shop. By buying this size I can make 20x20, 16x16 and 16x20. I know I will be able to make more 16x20 than the other sizes.

These frames are broken down in minutes like a typical metal frame, so they may be stored unassembled. My thought is: if I bought these frames and some artists could not afford to frame their work, I could offer to mat and glaze the work for a price. These would be made to fit one of the frame sizes listed above. This would allow me to show some different work that might not be seen due to the cost involved in framing. I would offer the pieces for sale including the frames, if sold I would get a new frame for the customer.

So a couple questions, I shall pose at this point:
1. Do you think this is a good idea? Why or why not?
2. What do you think is fair for a price (I know this is odd)for each frame rented?
I don't believe I should charge alot, because I will take the frames back and charge the next person. The frame charge would be for the length of the shows, lets say two months.

Thanks in advance for the responses,
Maynard James Keenan :confused:
"f that can't be done, I have been thinking about some ways to help artists frame their work a bit cheaper."

i tend to think that artists who take care of their work, ie framing in an appropriate manner are better to deal with. they realize that their work is important and that they need to be as professional as possible when trying to get a show.

and if you do this, then what happens to the guy who has great work and cant afford to frame his 24x36 masterpeices, how you going to help him?
If you are a custom framing shop. why on earth do you want the cheapest possible framing hanging on your walls as examples of your work?

If you are a gallery, go for it, you can make the work look as cheap as you want.

What is the point of spending your hard earned money on a bunch of section frames that will be beat to heck in a show or two, Just so an artist can get out of framing their work properly?

Another way you could help "artists" is to guarantee at least one of their paintings will sell for any show you put on for them. Much like that brilliant deal San Diego's corrupt city council made with the San Diego Chargers. They guaranteed a sell out stadium for every home game they played, talk about shrewd. So far it has cost San Diego taxpayers millions.

You could do a similar thing with your gallery, only guarantee at least ONE of their paintings will sell. This will only cost you the purchase price of one painting per show you put on, if nothing sells.

You could be building your own art collection and be making your gallery a desirable place for "artists" to display their work. The main thing though is, you would be "helping" artists to earn a living. Kudos to you.

OK, now that I am through being nasty, and assuming you are going to go ahead with this idea, rent each frame for half of what it would retail for per show.

In other words, each rental is your cost of the frame, but half the artists cost. This way, if the frame gets damaged, you will not be out anything besides shipping. Rent the same frame out three times, and you will be making money, I think that is what all this is about, isn't it?

John- That sounds like the same deal the Bengals got from Cincinnati when we built their publicly-financed stadium. Their threat to leave (read: blackmail) resulted in quite the sweetheart deal for them. One of our county commissioners is trying to sue the team now for breach of contract (because of failure to field a "viable" team) in order to try to "level the playing field" financially speaking.
I wonder whether the Expos moving to Washington, DC will result in a similar publicly-financed bonanza.
:mad: Rick
San Diego's stadium was also publicly financed. The deals our city council have been making with privately owned companies are so blatantly corrupt it's not even funny anymore. It is blatantly obvious that if you are a voting council member in San Diego, your going to be a wealthy person by the time your term is up.

They sold the navy training base that was donated by a local family to help the war effort, to a local developer for the equivalent of ten Point Loma Homes. We are talking hundreds of acres of prime San Diego waterfront real estate. The corruption is so bad it's like living in a banana republic, everyone just expects it.

As long as I am venting, what is all this " we must help the artists" garbage. Isn't painting and selling pictures the same as any other business? Are they not producing a product in order to earn a living?

I especially love the "artists" that go after public money. They produce absolute crap, that no person in their right mind would pay money for, let alone display it in their homes, and they call it "art". They then, for some reason that completely baffles me, expect local governments to purchase this crap for public display, at taxpayers expense.

Why can't the government support ALL failing businesses, why just these so called artists? They also expect government subsidized living and working quarters, called artists colony's or artists lofts.

The bulk of these people have no talent other than ripping off taxpayers, I don't understand it. If they where any good at all at what they did, they would not need public support, people would gladly pay for their products, er... "art".

Of course, if they where any good, they would not be part of the "in" group of "artists" that get all this free money and support.

Maynard, this probably explains my reluctance to help "artists" with free or cheap framing. They are just like us, they are running a business in order to earn a living. Anyone helped you lately?

What is the attitude of the artists involved? Are they simply looking for some cheap way to display their framed art? Or are they interested in some "give and take" with your frameshop? That would have a bearing on my decision. You know best whether you can afford to offer a service such as you describe here. If they are willing to promote your framing and send their buyers to you instead of turning them loose after the art sale to find a framer on their own, I would think that would be an incentive to consider doing a project like this on a trial basis with 3 or 4 artists. If it brought more framing to your shop, Hey, that is more income and more exposure of your frameshop name to the public.

This is a marketing idea that probably hasn't had a track record to validate the pros and cons but, if you think that there is some potential in doing it both for you, the only way to find out is to do it.

I would be the last one to try to shoot down a new idea simply because it doesn't sound good or doesn't appear to be making you money up front. I have tried a few ideas myself along those lines and some worked out and some didn't. But I tried them.

An example, I rented framed art to some local banks for $15/month per piece on a 3 month rotation. My bank was the first one to try it out in one of their branch banks and within 6 months I was rotating framed art amongst 5 banks in the area. I only had to carry enough to change the bank with the largest number of framings and I took the framings from the first bank and hung them in the second, took down that art and hung it in the third bank, and so on. Granted, it worked for about 2 years and then the banks decided that it was cheaper to just buy framed art and hang it but they all enjoyed the new art hanging in their businesses each quarter and I got some sales out of each bank as their customers enquired about whether they were for sale. It got my shop name known to the bank customers and brought in some revenue for me.

If you consider the benefits along with any drawbacks in doing such a project and it fits your area and your inventory and the way you want to conduct business, I would encourage you to take the step forward and give your idea a try. Just know when to throw in your hand and go on to something else.

Thank you for the heads up, Mitch. I missed looking at that when I responded. Now I feel like it was a total waste of time trying to help out somebody who didn't have the intentions that I assumed he had.

Well, a good lesson learned by me.

Quote from mjk:

lurking for a while i shall add

34. not eveything needs to be a debate, somethings can be different folks giving their own opinions

35. read before you respond, so you may see what you are responding too, therefor many arguements will be haulted before stating.

36. cheesheads=ok, potheads=acceptable, fatheads=hit the road

Thanks, Maynard, I'll surely keep your #35 in mind from now on. You have some explaining to do on this forum before you will ever get another helpful post from me! I get hornswoggled once in awhile but you only get one shot with me on the receiving end, I assure you.

I hope that what I posted will help someone who IS serious about their framing business and can use the information that was posted.


You are of course aware that Maynard James Keenan is also the name of current popular musician.

Is MJK your real name or a psuedonym?

It very well could be. I have a buddy with the name Randy Rhodes. But most people know that Randy is dead, but they still look at him funny.
Originally posted by Marc Lizer:

Marc, are we in Tonto-speak?

Okay, I can do that.

Many moons ago, Old School Marm, she say "That offensive". No one else say anything.

She think "Hmmm, young boy realize he talking to elder members of tribe now. Decide to change profile to show respect."

Old School Marm now realize she being overly optimistic.

Does that clear things up for you?

Sorry you misunderstood that.

I was asking how, as in actually how.

Not as in a derogatory manner of somebody elses culture.

But hey, if that's what your into . . .

Aside from the attempt at humor in a fashion that nowadays branded racist, but is really just insensitive, I really didn't understand a lick of that, nor do I care to, as it is in such bad taste.

So, again: How (that had been cleaned up, RE: profile)?

Have at it Kit.

Wasn't speaking in
It's probably not obvious to the casual observer here, but there is a limit to the bad taste that will be tolerated on The Grumble. Please clean up your profile.

It was obvious to me, and probably to anyone who knows her, that Kit was making fun of you, not Native Americans. To try and twist that into a racial issue is extremely bad form. Please clean up your act.
Ditto, Mark.

I failed my rocket scientist exam but even I understood the direction of Kit's remarks.

Kit I read your remark about "profile" and thought what profile? I see no mention of nielsen 15 or any such number like LJ 368IB.

Then I figured it out! And MJK still hasn't gotten the hint has he?

Fix your personal profile bud, some here find the CHILDISH HUMOR offensive. There are people here who really want to know who they are corresponding with, show us some respect! Thank you.

As to the question on hand, if my suppliers will rent me the molding I order then maybe I could rent it out to customers. BUT if I pay, they pay!
The question is a good one, or at least for some good grumbling. The profile is another matter, my guess is that mjk is some very young person who works for Michaels or Aaron Brothers, or perhaps Hobby Lobby or some such thing. He/she wants to remain incognito so they re-invented themselves as someone their daddy would look up to, just in case he came across The Grumble.

Fair-enough, John. Let's address the question, then.

It's almost impossible to make any money selling frames to starving artists. I can't even begin to imagine how renting them could be profitable.

How come nobody ever takes pity on the starving framers?

Before this really gets out of hand, fix your profile, say "oops, sorry, thiought I did that already!" and respond back to our gripes and suggestions so that we can get back to your original question.

John's right your question could provide some interesting ideas, but we can't get beyond being insulted by your profile!

Help us out with our "problem" and we will try to help you out with your problem. Thanks.
Ron and FG,

Yes. I understand that the was makn' an attempt at funn'n. Yes, trying to make fun of me, but yet, and someone elses expense.

But thanks for clarifying oh her behalf.

Was that post the manners and etiquette they taught you in finishing school?

It is just in as bad taste and bad form, and the bad taste and bad form she you are complaining about.

It would be like me responding in blackface just because I thought it would be cute and funny.

Or even Maynard doing so.

But I think you'd complain 'bout that. Maybe even call it racist, or at least in really bad taste.
In my area there is a big business in renting framing.

The studios bring is some art for a shoot.

They ask the purchase price and the rental price.

For example rental is 1/2 the price of buying (per day). Two day minimum.

They keep it three of four days.


You could make money doing that.
I don't think he's talking about renting to studios or the federal government or any other deep-pocket organization but, on rereading, I see he is talking about renting to artists who are showing work in his own gallery, which makes a bit more sense.

If you can reasonably expect to sell some of the art and make a commission, and renting the frames will help facilitate that, then why not?

I have even framed some promising work, at my own expense, on speculation, with the expectation of selling some of it.

'Course, I got burned and I won't do it again, but it was maybe worth a shot.
To all,

I did not mean to offend. I did it as a joke and forgot about it. Did try to fix it, but it will not work. So I am very sorry and apologize to anyone who took offense or thought I was trying to play a game. If there is a moderator who will unlock it i will fix it, if not it shall stay...I made a mistake and ould like to rectify it.

Now I put that out there to see if anyone would look at the idea seriously. If the profile got you messed up I am sorry. I wanted the question to be thought about. Framerguy has tried many different avenues from his posts. I thank him for looking at what I wrote. Did not mean to upset you. I do value your posts, I am very glad to see that you responded in a positive way.To answer your question the artists would be very involved, I think I might use this to get college students in art schools, maybe high school students (have an opening and get the parents and friends buying?) JRB I did not want the cheapest frames, but something that was affordable and looks very good. It would also match the interior of my gallery. These frames are used in Yales Gallery. They look great.

I would make money off of the matting, glazing, and everything else. The frame would be a portion of the cost. Now that I have tried to make things as good as I can will you think about this? I know you folks are smart, this is why I am trying very hard to get your insight into this.

If you read about the great MJK, you should know he is always hiding himself. sometimes doing something where your identity is unknown can change the outcome of things said. I thought I might try it.

MJK, a tool
In a corporate setting, there are tax implications when money is spent one way or the other. Renting or leasing offers imediate benefits compared to purchaseing. Many times a corporation will PAY MORE for an item if the tax implications are in their favor.

Since this situation is not driven by tax codes, but is all about how much the total bill is going to be and whether the artist will do any business with you or not at all (sorry Capt.E.) then I see some merit here.

Are these frames staying in your gallery and in your control at all times? Then no damage.

If the life span is about 6 to 12 months, being changed every 30-60 days, would you make a profit at $20 a month? One year of rentals grosses $200+.

Are you taking art that would normally be matted, put in a plastic sleeve and tossed in a bin, and elevating it to a position on the wall?

I have had the pleasure of putting up someones first show. His sister was a customer of mine and asked if she could rent :D my shop for a Saturday afternoon. I framed some, but most of the paintings were on canvas board without a frame. He was self taught and his work was often hard to enjoy. But when he walked into the gallery with it full of his work - it was a moment that I will remember forever. He has since found a mentor (whose work is in the Whitney collection). This job has a few perks.

It's almost impossible to make any money selling frames to starving artists. I can't even begin to imagine how renting them could be profitable.
Have you ever talked to someone that rents their furniture and appliances? They are mostly poor, and low income people that end up buying things on the "One couch for the price of Two plan". For many, it's the only way to get a couch today. I think those rental companies figured it out and made it work. Not the most morally ept role models for this situation, but they are never lacking for customers.

sometimes doing something where your identity is unknown can change the outcome of things said.
I would say that about sums up what happened here. You almost had a posse out to find your tail.
Hey MJK, go to the top of this page and look for "My Profile", click on that and go to "Edit Profile" on the next page. You can make your changes and make yourself a "legit" Grumbler. Whatever that means. Not all of us are as rattled by your profile but nobody is going to take you seriously, except Marc, and he only does it to be contrary.(Just kidding Marc)

Hope that helps and good luck with your question. Renting frames huh? hmmmm...

As my wife would say, "You're 37 years old and it's time you start acting like an adult."

Your profile is disrespectful to The Grumble and Grumblers and you need to fix it now.

Perhaps I'm overestimating my influence here, but I will ask to have you and your profile removed from The Grumble if you don't comply.

Happy birthday.
Ron, I agree, Happy Birthday MJK!!

Seriously though MJK you should fix that profile, ASAP. If you lost your password ask Marc to send you a new one and get it fixed or you will be harrassed everytime you post.

Find your password or get a new one!
Either it's fixed or I don't know what I'm doing. Under profile all I see is:

Member Status: Grumbler in training
Member Number: 4339
Registered: 06-20-2004
Posts: 4
Location: norfolk Va
Birth Date: 11-18-1967
Retail Framer (yes/no): yes


It's fixed, but not - as requested - by the user.

It's too late for mjk, but it's better not to ignore polite requests to fix a profile.
This is all so unfortunate, because I really wanted to know who makes the wood frames that use Neilsen hardware!

Where can I get something like that?
Is it real, or is that fictitious as well? :mad:
Eric, it might be a figment of my over-active imagination, but I think that - at one time - Nielsen made "frame kits" in some wood mouldings that went together just like the metal ones.

Maybe they still do.

Then again, maybe they never did.

I hope that helps. :confused:
Neilsen had a line of metals with wood veneers.
No, this time you are right. They did, maybe still do. They used an L-shaped plastic connector that pushed in from beind.

Not very nice looking though. I'll keep looking.
Maybe there is some other way of having 're-combinable' sides that will not look like ready-made's from Michael's.
L-J has some "Frame Pacs" that use kind of a modified Thumbnail joining system. They are meant to be glued but, if you were really brave and not too bright, you could probably join them without gluing so they'd be reconfigurable.
saw something like this in an art magazine, the name is exhibit frame. not sure if it is one or two words, but it does exist.