How to Decorate with Artwork on a Shoestring Budget, Affordable Framed Prints & Posters

How to Decorate with Artwork on a Shoestring Budget, Affordable Framed Prints & Posters

Article by Mark Reff







Affordable Prints & PostersWhat can you do when your walls are blank and you only have a shoestring budget for decorating? Consider prints and posters. They are high-resolution reproductions of original artwork, including paintings and drawings done in a wide variety of media. Best of all, they’re inexpensive. You’ll be able to find pictures that match your décor and match your budget too!The quality is good and you’ll be dazzled by all the choices you have. Whether the art you love is the work of da Vinci, van Gogh, Picasso or some other artist, it’s most likely available as a print, and the price is surprisingly affordable.Pick Your Art Prints by SubjectYou’ll want to start your search for artwork by taking some measurements of your space. Plan to leave some extra room around the picture so it won’t look cramped. Determine if a horizontal, vertical or square picture will fit best.If you don’t have a particular artist in mind, then you can search through prints by subject matter. Trying to fill a space on a kitchen wall? Then search for kitchen art where you’ll find pictures of colorful vegetables, fruit arranged in a bowl, steaming pasta, vintage wines and coffee beans so realistic you can smell their aroma in your mind.Decorating a house at the shore? Beach art offers plenty of possibilities. Consider pictures of seashells, brightly colored beach blankets, children playing in the surf or a crab scurrying in the sand.Or how about art for football lovers? You’ll find prints of football games, athletes, equipment and stadiums. So many options! But the best part is the price. Most prints and posters cost a mere to .A Mat & Frame Are the Finishing TouchIf you can stretch your budget just a little bit more, then you’ll want to get a mat and frame for your print. You can buy a mat and frame right off the shelf at any Target, Walmart or crafts store. However, for the best results, consider having your print custom matted and framed.You can expect to spend -0, but the mat and frame are well worth it. They’ll make your economical print look like expensive artwork. They’ll draw attention to the image and also complement your room’s décor. But their function isn’t only cosmetic. They’ll also protect your print from getting dirty, creased and faded over time.Start with the mat. Most prints work well with a neutral color mat such as cream, off-white or light gray. If the print is under 11″ x 14″, choose a mat that’s 2.5″ or less. Larger pictures can be placed in a mat that’s 3″ or more.While one mat looks nice, two look even better. You can double mat your print by layering one mat on top of another. Only about ¼” of the inner mat will show. Choose an accent color found in the print. This double-matting technique will give your finished piece an art-gallery presentation without adding much to the cost.Next, you’ll need to pick a frame. You’ll see plenty of different wood and metal frame options. How do you choose? Consider the style of the print itself.Is it an abstract painting with a contemporary feel? Then a sleek black or silver frame might work. If it’s an impressionist masterpiece, then an ornate gold frame might provide the right presentation. If it’s a picture of brightly-dressed children playing in the park, consider a painted metal frame.In general, dark-colored prints tend to look best with dark-toned frames, and light-colored prints work well with lighter-toned frames.Hold your print, mat and frame together to see how they look as a unit. Mix and match pieces until the ensemble provides the right presentation for your finished artwork. You’ll know it when you see it.Online Art Galleries Offer Affordable PrintsPrints can be found in local art galleries and frame shops. But you’ll be limited to the inventory they have on hand. For the widest selection, today’s best option is to shop online at a virtual art gallery. You’ll be able to sort through an unlimited number prints by subject, color, artist or style, all right from your home!Once you’ve picked your print, most online art galleries also offer mats and custom framing services. You should be able to see an image of how your selections all look together. Some sites can even show you how the finished artwork will look on a wall of your color, which certainly takes the guesswork out of shopping online for art.Find Eye-Level to Hang Your Framed Print Correctly Once you have your framed artwork in hand, you’ll want to be sure to display it properly. Many people make the mistake of hanging pictures too high. Instead, determine where eye-level is.If the picture is to hang in a family room where everyone tends to play games or watch TV, then the right height is eye level for sitting. If the picture is hanging in an entrance or foyer, then most people viewing it will be standing and eye level will be higher.Don’t forget to check the lighting on your picture. If the area where it hangs is dim, then you may want to add a few track lights for some direct illumination or put a lamp on a nearby table for some indirect lighting.Choose Your Artwork with ConfidenceWhen you decide to use custom-framed prints or posters to decorate your walls, you’ll have endless options, even though you’re decorating on a shoestring budget. Don’t feel overwhelmed by all the choices. Just look for images you like, and you can’t make a wrong decision.Select your print, mat and frame with confidence. As long as they appeal to your sense of style, your custom-framed artwork will bring you happiness every time you see it.




About the Author

Mark Reff is the owner of One Touch Art, an online art and framing store with more than 250,000 affordable prints. You’ll find pictures and matching frames for every room in your home. Add that perfect finishing touch to your décor.