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Why Are Picture Frames So Expensive?

expensive picture frames

If you want to preserve your precious photographs, certificates, and paintings, you will need to put them inside a good-quality frame. However, why are picture frames so expensive? Why do good picture frames cost an arm and a leg? This article will strive to teach you why this is so.

Picture frames, even though they seem like simple strips of wood, do more than just add a bit more to your picture’s aesthetics. Once you know why picture frames are so pricey, you will understand why the price tag is like that. You will also learn why you should invest in them.

If you are wondering why are diploma frames so expensive, it is because of a number of factors, including, but not limited to:

What Affects the Costs of Picture Frames

The additional options added to the frame, like stands or wall fixings, influence the final cost of framing a picture. This is why it is important to know what you will be doing with the frame beforehand before you go shopping for one.

With this knowledge, you will be able to opt out of “deals” that come with extra features that you will not be using anyway. With that said, you should also take the value of the picture you will be framing.

If you will be framing an old picture of your parents, which has a lot of sentimental value, then you would want a frame that has features for protecting its contents. I would not say the same if you will be re-framing an old photo that you bought from a thrift store because you thought it just looked cool.


materials picture frames

Obviously, the larger the frame, the more it will cost. The amount of material used for making the bigger frame will undoubtedly add to the price tag.

Not just the added lengths of molding, but also the size of the backing board, and the amount of glazing needed to finish the frame. All of these make the bigger frames more expensive.

In addition, the size of the frame can greatly affect the delivery costs if you will have the frame delivered to your home. On the other hand, the retailer will also need to offset the handling and delivery fees to their store, so it will also be a factor in the price even if you are buying the frame from a store.

Materials Used

Aside from how the frame material looks, you will also need to choose carefully what kind of material is used, depending on what you will be framing.

Take note that the more expensive materials typically provide the frame’s contents with more protection. This is not just in terms of the physical strength of the frame, but in other areas as well.

For instance, the frame material should not contain any chemicals that could potentially leach out and damage the picture you will be framing and cause discoloration. On the other hand, if you will only be framing a cheap print that you just liked the aesthetics of, then a ready-made frame should work just fine.

On the other hand, if you got your hands on an original artwork from a famous artist, or you have a large-format photograph that has a lot of sentimental value, then you should have a custom-made frame made for it. Use a molding material that looks nice and provides exceptional protection.

The backing board should not be that expensive as they are usually only made from MDF. The glazing will also have an impact, as those that provide

UV protection and have anti-glare features are more expensive than regular glazing.

Picture Mounts

costs of picture frames

As mentioned earlier, adding an optional mount for the frame will add to the final price mainly because of the additional materials and labor costs.

The cheapest mount that you might find are usually white ones, and the prices can still increase depending on the board type you will be using, and if the mount is a double mount or a V-groove.

Shipping Costs

If you will have the frame delivered to your house, because photo frames are fragile and usually large, the shipping fee will be much higher. Not to mention you also have to consider the distance that the package will need to travel. If you ordered your frame from overseas, expect the shipping and packaging fee to cost a whole lot more.


If you want an ornate frame, the framer will need to spend a lot more time and effort in making it. On the other hand, mass-produced frames are cheaper as they are most likely machine-made.

Custom-made frames are usually made by hand, which takes longer, but the quality will surely be much better compared to mass-production picture frames.


Not all picture frames cost a lot of money but custom-made ones do. If you want to provide the best protection for your pictures, you no longer need to wonder why are picture frames so expensive.

Just know that your money is well-spent when you avail of custom framing. Aside from the fact that they look much better, they also provide better protection for their contents.