David Art Center, in business for more than four decades, stocks a deluge of quality art supplies from name brands including Liquitex, Winsor & Newton, Daler-Rowney, and PrismaColor. Located just a few minutes from downtown New Orleans, the art-savvy staff also helps visitors to dress up artwork, photography, and two-dimensional dolls with a selection of more than 1,000 styles of moldings and mats, custom-cut glass, and dry-mounting materials.
Framed, which was named runner-up for Best Frame Shop in 2010 by readers of the New Haven Advocate, uses careful custom-framing techniques to produce well-balanced rectangles for all occasions. Overseen by 15-year framing veterans Liz Hellwig and Rocco Compitello, the staff at Framed meets with prospective project doers, ironing out the two-dimensional details for projects large and small. These canvas wranglers practice conservation framing, a technique that keeps pieces true to their original condition through the use of specialized glass and acid-free mat boards. Likewise, to ensure quality and a pleasant lack of presidential apparitions, all custom projects are constructed on-site, in the store's comprehensive workshop. Though framing rates vary from project to project, an average 18"x24" piece—including black wood frame, standard glass, and dry mounting—starts at approximately $66.
Experienced framers Barry Stahl and Bob Clayton built Big Picture Framing from scratch in 2000, holding meetings around an old card table as construction roared around them. Today, framers at 15 area locations craft custom frames to display artwork, photographs, and record sleeves, and shadow boxes protect three-dimensional items such as ballet slippers, macaroni art, or a swarm of wasps. Patrons can dictate all design choices, choosing from metal and wooden frames in a multitude of colors and styles, or ask for recommendations from one of Big Picture Framing's resident experts. Big Picture Framing also stocks pre-framed art, prints, and posters to spruce up bare-walled homes or a drab doghouse.