Picture Frame sizes

How to Choose the Perfect Picture Frame Size

Selecting the right picture frame is an essential part of decorating your home and preserving your memories. Figuring out what size to buy is perhaps the most important part of this process since the frame needs to elevate the aesthetics of your home and provide enough space for the picture to fit inside. If you choose wisely, the frame can enhance the presentation of the picture, but the wrong frame can make it seem out of place!

Let’s start things off by discussing the fundamentals of the matter at hand.

Understanding Picture Frame Sizes

Key Measurements for Picture Frames

First things first, a frame’s size comes from its dimensions, or in other words, the lengths of its borders. The glass size is based on the inner borders, and the same goes for the size of the picture that can fit inside.

If you’re placing your artwork inside and don’t want it sticking to the glass, you can add a mat made of cardboard to provide some separation and to crop the image if you so choose. This mat provides a border around the image, so it should be larger than the picture itself but smaller than the frame.

Standard Frame Sizes You Should Know

All sizes are in inches

  • 4x6

Commonly used for small, wallet-sized photographs and snapshots.

  • 5x7

Great for photos of specific individuals.

  • 6x8

Standard photo size with more spacious matting and mounts.

  • 8x8

A square frame that offers a uniform layout.

  • 5x10

A landscape frame great for capturing natural beauty and scenic vistas.

  • 8x10

Another standard photo size for larger mattings and mounts. Suitable for A5 prints.

  • 10x12

A versatile frame suitable for artwork and family portraits.

  • 11x14

A larger option for individual portraits. Great for A4 prints.

  • 12x15

Big enough for group photos or larger portraits. 

  • 16x20

Great for small posters and A3 prints. 

  • 20x24

Suitable for posters with picture mounts and/or matting.

Steps to Measure Your Picture Frame Correctly

Tools You'll Need

  • Tape measure

You can purchase one from Amazon, check out this link

  • The picture you’ll place inside

If you don’t have a picture, try to find one that visually matches the size of your desired frame.

  • Paper and pen

Jotting down the measurements is useful for added precision.

Measuring the Picture

Place the measuring tape on one end of the picture and extend it to the other side. For example, you can start at the bottom and move up to the top. Note down the length.

Next, measure the width of the picture. This is the distance from one side to the other. Add the two together and you’ve got your measurement.


Make sure your readings are accurate, and when in doubt, add a tiny bit of extra space. It’s better to overestimate than underestimate, but be careful not to go too far with this! Also, make sure the picture is on a flat surface while measuring. This ensures a precise calculation.

Choosing the Right Frame Size

Once you’ve gotten your measurements, it’s time to pick out a frame. Size isn’t the only thing that matters, though; you also need to make sure it matches your interior decor style. You can also use frames larger than the picture with the appropriate mat; just ensure that the picture is placed right in the center.

Matching Frame Size with Artwork Dimensions

 Visual Guide to Frame Sizes

Artwork might require a different approach to pictures when it comes to framing. It’s more acceptable to have a blank border around the art, whereas pictures are generally meant to fit the frame perfectly.

However, the proportions and ratios should still match. You can’t place an 8x8 work of art in an 11x14 frame. If it’s a square art piece, go for a square frame, and the same goes for landscape images as well.

Finally, try to use a frame that enhances the artwork’s visual appeal without overshadowing it. Using an oversized mat is a great way to make the art take center stage since it won’t add any aesthetic value, but instead will call more attention to the art you’re trying to present.

Visual Guide to Frame Sizes

As you can see below, you can use frames of various sizes to put your print on display. Using mats can also provide some depth and space to allow the art to come into full focus, offering a more subtle and tasteful aesthetic than a simple border frame.

Examples of Framed Artworks

 examples of framed artworks

In the examples below, different works of art are brought to life with their ideal frames. Landscape frames allow you to display triptychs, slim portrait frames can focus the attention on a single subject, and square frames are also a great choice with or without mats. Also, frames can be placed vertically or horizontally based on your preferred style, so feel free to experiment and play around with as many ideas as possible.

Common Frame-Sizing Mistakes to Avoid

Overestimating Wall Space

There are two ways in which you can go wrong with this.

  • You might choose a frame that’s too large for the available wall space. This can create an awkward aesthetic, with the frame and art overwhelming the surrounding area and detracting from the rest of your interior design. It looks tacky and is best avoided if you can help it.
  • Another mistake is failing to take proportionality into account. Not only does the frame have to fit onto the wall, but it must also be the right proportion which means that overly small frames are a no-go area as well.

The best way to avoid these issues is to carefully calculate available wall space and find a frame size that corresponds accordingly. 

Selecting the Wrong Mat Size

An ideal mat should provide some breathing room around the framed art’s edge, which is also called the “reveal”. As a result, you should avoid mats that are too small or that only provide a thin line around the artwork. Proportion matters here yet again, and while selecting a large mat is a bold choice that can work in certain contexts, it’s best to stick to the standard 1.5 to 4 inches of reveal around the art.

FAQ on Frame Sizes

What Size Frame for A5, A4, A3 Prints?

It’s usually best to opt for frames that are slightly larger than your prints.

  • A5 prints are 5.8 x 8.3 inches. Use an 8x10 or 9x12 inch frame.
  • A4 prints are 8.3 x 11.7 inches. Try an 11 x 14 or 12x16 inch frame.
  • A3 prints are the largest option out of the two, measuring in at 11.7 x 16.5 inches. 16x20 or 18x24 inch frames usually work best.

How to Convert Frame Sizes Between IN and CM?

1-inch converts to 2.54 centimeters. So, an 8x10 inch frame will translate to 20.32x25.4 cms.

Finding Custom Size Frames

If you need a frame size but can’t find it anywhere, consider reaching out to a service provider and asking for a bespoke product. Custom framing options allow for non-standard sizes such as 10x7 and 9x6.

Where to Find the Best Frames for Your Needs

Recommended Retailers and Online Shops

One of the most iconic frame stores in the world, Frames.co.uk offers a variety of styles suited for a wide range of budgets.

At Eagle Frames, you can find a broad selection of expertly handcrafted and environmentally sustainable picture frames that can suit any aesthetic you have in mind.

  • Ready Made Picture Frame

This company has been in the business for over four decades. They offer hundreds of styles and dozens of sizes, allowing you to choose whatever fits your needs.

  • AK Frames

If modern, elegant designs are more your bag, AK Frames has got you covered. Their thin frames are especially notable for their minimalist vibe.

  • eFrame

eFrame prides itself on speedy delivery and customer satisfaction. A great place for first time buyers who want to test the waters.

Custom Framing Services

Custom framing can take your creative expression to a whole new level. Here are some of the benefits of buying from such services:

  • Tailored to Your Needs: They’re designed with your specifications in mind, allowing you to display pictures and artwork that go off the beaten path
  • Great for Gifts: Your loved ones will be overjoyed when they receive a custom frame, because they’ll know it’s not just a random product you purchased.
  • Highly Durable: They can last a lifetime as long as your service provider uses high quality materials.

Here are some service providers you can buy custom frames from:

  • Frames.co.uk

The one-stop-shop for frames has bespoke offerings as well. Try them out!

  • eFrame

eFrame provides custom frames upon request. Reach out to them for more information.

  • Soho Frames

This chic service provider is perfect for buyers looking for artsy, unique frames that push the boundaries of creative expression.

Sign Up for Special Offers and Discounts

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