I’m always great at spotting bargains on frames that I love. I’m not afraid to mix and match colors, styles and textures, so I’ve accumulated a ton of different frames for my entertainment center and built-in bookshelves (and every other surface in my home.) Where I struggle the most is actually taking the step to fill the frames.
I’ve found that ordering pictures of my friends and family on a service, like shutterfly for example, is a great way to fill some of my frames. However, not all photos are timeless, and can quickly feel out of date. It also can feel a little overwhelming, from a design standpoint, to only have frames only filled with pictures. It can make bookshelves for example feel a cluttered. To break up the space, I love to find unique frame filling alternatives.
Here are 5 Unique Ways I Fill Picture Frames in My House
1. Save Postcards & Cards
I have awesome friends who love to send notes and postcards for every occasion and just to say hello in the mail. I had started a collection of everything they’d sent me over the years in a little basket in my entertainment center. However, I really wanted a better way to showcase the artwork on the card, and keep it in a more functional way, especially since a ton of the cards were hand designed by my friends. When I began styling my bookshelves, using only photos felt a little cluttered, so instead it dawned on me to fill some of my picture frames with the beautiful cards my friends had sent me instead. I love how different each of the designs are because it really reminds me of each of my friends’ personalities, and allows me to keep a little piece of them near in every space in my home.
2. Show a Handwritten Quote
Another unique way to fill picture frames is to write out a quote that resonates with you on a piece of nice paper, and frame it. My good friend Alison, sent me this quote in the mail with a card and I loved it. It was a perfect addition to my dresser, so that I can be inspired by her words every morning. I don’t have the best handwriting, so having a friend who has really pretty handwriting write out the quote makes it much more frame-able.
3. Create a Detailed Drawing (Or Buy one!)
A black and white or colored detailed drawing can be another unique way to fill frames. A drawing allows for white space, and is especially perfect to fill a frame that already makes a statement on it’s own. I found this cute gold framed butterfly drawing at a flea market on the east side of Michigan, and I can’t for the life of me remember who the artist was. (I’ll get back to you with a name as soon as I find her business card.) It’s one of my favorite pieces to move around my house, because it works really well in a number of different spaces. Right now I have it in my bedroom decorating my mid-century modern nesting tables.
4. Use Landscaping or Architecture Photography
Another unique way to fill frames is to use photography that doesn’t have people as it’s subject. This kind of photography is much more timeless. It’s not going to feel outdated in a year when you have a slew of new pictures you’ve taken with friends and family. I absolutely loved this picture taken by my friend Alison, and had to frame it. It’s been moved multiple times, and I love how the pops of orange and tans play with my predominantly cool-toned decor.
5. Keep the Original Stock Image or Graphic
A final way to fill picture frames, and the laziest way, is to find frames that already have a stock image or graphic that works with your space. Most of the time you’ll find that the logo of the frame brand is used in the filler content, however sometimes you can find simple graphics and pictures that don’t have a logo and look really clean in the frame. I’ve had the best luck finding frames with pretty stock images and graphics at Home Goods because they have such a large variety of brands and styles. Another twist on this is to utilize the filler content as a mat around a smaller image to give it some additional visual interest. Especially if you’re using a neutral frame. This “&” sign was already a part of this frame when I purchased it, and it works really well on my bookshelf.
Filling frames doesn’t just have to involve pictures. Using interesting art or items that you already have around your house will help you bring some variety into your home decor. These are great all great frame filling ideas if you have a ton of space on built ins and your entertainment center that you need to fill (like I did when we moved into our new house).
Do you have another unique way that you like to fill the frames around your house? Let me know in the comments! I’d love to get some new ideas.