Starting a Professional Framing Business

Starting a professional framing business involves taking portraits, pictures, photos and awards for consumers, artists and businesses to a higher, more creative level.

You can offer your services to art gallery owners, local artists, photographers or consumers wanting to frame artwork they’ve purchased (or created themselves). This is a creative “craft” business where your professional opinion and you skills will help you succeed.

A big market for many business ideas is the baby boomer market who is now turning into the “young seniors” market. These grandparents have a little extra income and are often the big spenders, especially when it comes to their grandchildren.

If you can target this market with framing of their precious grandchildren, you can be on your way to a profitable business. And the

You can start off small in your home with a solid workbench and some used framing equipment (mounting boards, frame cutter, glass cutter, saws, etc.).

Most small local colleges offer a class on framing and if you are new to the business, you may want to look into signing up for a course. You can learn most of what you need in a couple of months. Another option is to “volunteer” for a local frame shop to learn the trade.

How much you can make

The business market can often be much more profitable than the consumer market.

However, high-end consumers can pay a pretty penny, and if you can build a relationship with an artist who will either recommend you to his customers or hire you to frame her work, your profits can increase significantly.

Valuable skills/Requirements

If you’re handy with tools of the trade and creative, it will help you build this business a little faster. Being able to recommend specific frame designs and finishes to your customers is a skill that is very important.

In this business you will deal with people on a regular basis and will need to share your professional opinion with your customers.

As I said, building relationships or even business partnerships with local (and not so local) artists can greatly influence your success in the framing business.

Start up Costs/What you need to begin

This is easily a self-taught business once you understand how to utilize the tools available to framers. It is very possible to begin with used equipment and move into more expensive tools down the road once your business grows.

The range for equipment starts a little below $500 for everything you need to begin.

Some of the basic tools you need include:

- Clamps

- Saws

- Miter Boxes

- Heavy-duty hand stapler

To learn more, visit the Professional Picture Framers Association