Hot trend: 30 creative ways to decorate with empty frames

It wasn’t too long ago when old picture frames and even mirror frames were relegated to dusty attic or garage storage space. But all that has changed dramatically in recent years, and today buying a truly vintage frame, an empty one no less, will cost you a lot! Creative designers who work with styles like shabby chic and eclectic are largely responsible for this trendy decorating trend, and homeowners have quickly absorbed it with much fervor. Today, we take a look at 30 beautiful, diverse and sometimes unusual inspirations that show the value and beauty of empty frames.

Using an empty frame as a decorative piece is probably the simplest of all ideas, and it saves you some money, as you don’t need to splurge on expensive works of art. It is this simplicity and frugality that makes the idea a favorite among those who are not enthusiastic followers of changing design and decoration trends. It’s time to dust off those old photo frames and join in the fun!

Alchemy of frames and works of art

A great way to decorate a room is to always leave an empty space and not fill every inch of the wall with artwork right away. While this may seem like a strange and incomplete approach to decoration, it gives you the opportunity to add an interesting decorative piece that you love in the future! Empty frames find the balance between your desire to have something on the walls right away and the opportunity to enhance the room with a stunning canvas when you actually find it. Combining these empty frames with existing framed images or paintings creates an amazing display!

 The unique living room uses unframed sketches and empty frames as elegant decorative pieces [From: Houzz] Empty frames on walls can always be filled with artwork later [Design: Millworks Designs] Fun infusion of color and pattern within the eclectic space [Design: Kootut Murut]    The collection of photo frames has a big impact on this small home office [From: Rikki Snyder]  Add an empty frame to add a fun touch to the image shelf! [Design: Geraldine James/CICO Books]  The gallery wall is filled with framed photographs and some empty frames [Design: Hufft Projects]

A giant impact

When we talk about empty frames, most of our readers tend to automatically think of small or medium frame frames. But break this convention by taking home a large, remarkable photo frame or giant mirror frame that stands out as a sculptural addition on its own. You can combine several large frames casually for an eclectic interior or give it a more neat look with frames that are similar in size and finish. If you can’t find a giant frame that fits your contemporary living room or feel the options available are too expensive, go to the woodworking for a bespoke frame.

 Exposed brick wall, graffiti, and giant empty picture frames come together to create an upscale bedroom [Design: CityLoft] Hand-carved wooden frame adds visual height to the eclectic bedroom [Design: Angela Flournoy]   Create your own frames at home and turn them into sensational ones with a little paint! [From: MJ Lanphier]  A different wallpaper inside the frame would make this room even more fun [Design: Lisa Wolfe Design]  The large empty frame offers a small space on the candle shelves on the vanity! [Design: Encompass Studio / Photography: KuDa]

Framing the frame!

Have you ever thought about simply framing those frames? Why should frames always play a secondary role and highlight something else? That definitely seems to be the philosophy behind this one! However, jokes aside, this interesting aspect is definitely becoming fashionable in homes all over the planet. You will need frames with a similar finish to achieve this and of course they should be of different sizes, from large to small. The more diverse the size and shapes of the frames, the better!

 Gorgeous collage of empty frames in the eclectic bedroom [From: Five Brothers One Sister] Fabulous blue frames blend in with the room’s color scheme [Design: Detail Interiors of Pensacola / Greg Riegler Photography] Decorate the stairwell wall with some empty frames [Design: Frankel Building Group]    Beautiful girls’ bedroom that’s pretty in pink! [Design: Flik by Design]

Visual consistency

This is probably the most classic approach to decorating with frames, if we can call it that. Grouping a few empty frames together creates a captivating gallery wall and gives the room an instant focal point. As in the case of framing frames, it is best to have frames with a similar finish to execute this idea. Size and shape are secondary here, and the common tone will unite them all. If color is not the element that frames share, then a common shape is the next best alternative.

 Use empty photo frames to decorate the fireplace ledge this holiday season [Design: Natalie Fuglestveit Interior Design] Selected collection of empty wall frames brings class to contemporary gray bedroom [Design: In House Interior Design / Photo: Jeffrey Aron]   Gold frames bring brightness and symmetry to this all-white room [Design: Jessica Bennett Interiors] An infusion of red for the dining room with empty frames on the wall [Design: Kelly LaPlante] Empty frames add a golden glow to the shabby-chic style bathroom [From: Sarah Greenman] White frames blend in with background effortlessly [Photo: Jason Snyder]   

Change and style

Today’s story focuses more on ways to decorate with empty frames, so we won’t dwell on the varied collections, art pieces, and ancient finds you can actually frame. But it’s important to remember that the empty frame can be easily filled with a variety of objects and fun finds, giving you a versatile and dynamic gallery wall. And with the festive season here, a small wreath, some bright Christmas decorations or even a few ribbons may be the solution.

 An Easy Way to Add a Little Holiday Cheer to the Empty Frame [From: Julie Ranee Photography] Dress Up Those Empty Vintage Frames with Holiday Cheer [Design: Meredith Ericksen] Smartly placed empty frames allow you to switch between decorative pieces with ease [From: Patrick Heagney Photography]    Peculiar use of empty frames to showcase a unique collection [Design: Shannon Ggem ASID] Empty picture frames with glass bring a different visual appeal to the bedroom [Design: Justina Blakeney] 

A peculiar twist

There are very few rules when it comes to decorating with empty frames, and in an eclectic environment there are fewer. Those who wish to bring a touch of glitter along with the picture frames can leave the glass cover on, while others may prefer to simply decorate with the single empty frame to ensure it becomes the focal point of the room. You can even combine it with other collections and wall-mounted displays that don’t include picture frames for visual contrast. The options are truly endless

 A touch of asymmetry adds to the atmosphere of the eclectic interior [Design: Designing Solutions] Transitional living room with a touch of purple [Design: Nina Jizhar] Vintage finds help create a fascinating shabby chic bedroom [Design: Jonnie Andersen]    The solitary empty frame above the bed makes it a minimal decorative piece in the elegant bedroom [From: Wallpaperdirect]

Why do people hang empty frames?

Empty frames find the balance between your desire to have something on the walls right away and the opportunity to enhance the room with a stunning canvas when you actually find it. Combining these empty frames with existing framed images or paintings creates an amazing display!

What does the empty picture frame symbolize?

Empty frames are powerful graphic punctuation marks that interrupt the narrative so that readers realize that they must complete the points and finish the storytelling work.

What can you do with an empty frame?

Transform a find from a thrift store into stylish (and useful) décor. Transform a find from a thrift store into stylish (and useful) décor. The wire strung into a sleek frame keeps earrings within easy reach and displays your ornaments beautifully when you’re not wearing them.

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By Catharine Bwana