The 8 Best Picture Frames of 2021

Don't let those gorgeous shots languish on your phone

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Photography adds an unmistakable warmth and life to a space, but the choices for frames can be overwhelming (and it can be easy to fall into a Pinterest rabbit hole of ideas). We've winnowed it down to some excellent options in a mix of prices, whether you're looking to create a gallery wall, a tabletop collection, or an ever-changing digital display that you can update in real-time.

Here, our favorite frames that have as much personality as the photos they hold.

Our Top Picks
With a clean, classic design, these frames match many types of decor and have archival-quality mats that give a professional look.
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These budget-friendly frames come in black or white in several different sizes and have acid-free mats.
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A great gift for grandparents, this digital frame has an app that allows families to share photos that will automatically appear in the frame.
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Made of mercury colored glass, this frame has a vintage vibe that makes it a great match for older family photos and comes in three sizes.
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These frames are made from upcycled Kentucky barnwood giving your decor a rustic touch, and look great with landscape photos.
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Great as a wedding gift, this unique silver plated frame has gentle curves and a triple-tiered edge to help showcase your photo.
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This frame can be customized and personalized for gifts or to help you remember a special occasion, and comes in several sizes.
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This classic leather frame is affordably priced, has a slightly distressed finish, and is available in black and brown.
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In This Article

Best Overall: Pottery Barn Wood Gallery Single Opening Frames

Wood Gallery Single Opening Frames

These elegant frames have a clean, classic profile that will match many types of decor. They're available in seven different wood finishes, including basic black and white, charcoal, and espresso. Each one comes with an archival-quality mat that has a bevel (or angled) cut, giving the finished product a professional look—minus the visit to a framing shop.

They're available in a range of both frame and photo opening sizes, as well as sets of three that include space for 4 x 6-inch, 5 x 7-inch, and 8 x 10-inch photos. They can be displayed vertically or horizontally on a surface, or mounted on the wall. Hanging hardware is included.

Best Budget: Ikea Ribba Frame

Ribba White Frame

It's hard to believe that such an attractive, solid frame could be had for such a rock bottom price, but that's what Ikea has always excelled at.

The Ribba line includes both black and white frame options and a variety of sizes all the way up to 24 by 36 inches (which costs just $20 and is perfect for posters). The front of the frame is a lightweight protective plastic, which can be a plus if you have small children running around and you're worried about shattered glass. If you have an overwhelming amount of artwork that you're looking to hang (those early preschool treasures, perhaps?), these frames will help you stick to a budget while still giving you a modern vibe.

Note that if you choose to use the included acid-free mat, your photo will have a slightly cropped look, due to the opening size (so for a 4 x 6-inch frame, that would be 2 ¾ x 4 ¼ inches).

Best Digital: Aura Mason Frame

Aura Mason Digital Frame

Need a gift for grandparents who aren't so tech-savvy? This attractive digital frame is a great option, allowing you to add photos remotely using the Aura app, and invite family members to collaborate as well.

This frame has a textured, stone-like appearance and comes in either graphite (gray) or white. The touch screen makes it easy to use, and the sensor adjusts the screen brightness based on the room's available light. The screen size is just under 9 inches, and the frame itself measures 10 x 7 x 2 inches.

Just like a phone or tablet, you can easily flip the frame to display a photo horizontally or vertically. It has built-in Wi-Fi, which is required for it to work, comes with unlimited photo storage, and is compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant. Those who use Google Photos can set it to auto-update from a specific album, making the process even more seamless. If you're sending it as a gift, you can pre-load it with photos and have a custom message appear on the screen for the ultimate "aw" factor.

Best Metallic: Anthropologie Mercury Glass Frame

Mercury Glass Frame

Anthropologie is known for its distinctive housewares, and their picture frames are no exception. This one is made with mercury glass, which has an eye-catching, vintage appeal that would be a lovely option for displaying older family photos. The glass gets its signature metallic look because it's been treated with a silvering solution and sealed inside two separate panes. It's available in three popular sizes: 4 x 6 inches, 5 x 7 inches, and 8 x 10 inches.

Note that this frame doesn't contain any actual mercury—that just refers to the silver color.

Best Wooden: PictureFrames.com Neutral Three-Piece Wide Tabletop Picture Frame Set

Neutral 3-Piece Wide Tabletop Picture Frame Set

Upcycled Kentucky barnwood gives these frames a look that's more unusual than most basic wood options. Each one holds a 5 x 7-inch photo, and thanks to markings such as knotholes and grain distressing, no two look the same. The tones vary and include lighter ash, rich espresso, and charcoal gray. They're sold three to a set, and bulk discounts are also available. Because of the rustic vibe, these frames would work well for showing off vacation photos that feature destinations with dramatic landscapes like mountains or beaches.

Best for Gifts: Nambé Portal 8x10 Frame

Nambe Frame

As a wedding gift, this gorgeous silver-plated frame is a fun twist on the more staid and classic-looking 8 x 10-inch styles. Created by noted jewelry and flatware designer Michael Altomari, it has gentle curves and a triple-tiered edge that helps to accentuate the picture on display. It holds an 8 x 10-inch print, and the frame itself measures 9 x 12 inches.

Nambé collaborates with artists from all over the world to create its unique-looking housewares, and many have been displayed at iconic spots such as The British Museum and The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Best Personalized: Caddy Bay Collection Personalized Wood Frame

CaddyBayCollection Personalized Wood Frame

Although it's shown as a wedding frame, you can choose to have any type of text inscribed on this custom wood piece. Caddy Bay is based in California, and they offer several styles and templates, including weddings, couples, and pets. Because the frame features text, you must choose either a horizontal or vertical orientation. Available sizes include 4 x 6 inches, 5 x 7 inches, and 8 x 10 inches.

Each frame can be customized with artwork such as graceful-looking branches, pawprints, hearts, or monograms. One of the especially pithy pet frames includes text that says "My Favorite Child," with an arrow pointing downwards.

Best Leather: Lawrence Frames Leather Picture Frame

Lawrence Frames Black

Sometimes you're just seeking a classic leather frame, and this popular, glass-fronted option, which would look equally at home on either a nightstand or a desk, is both affordable and handsome. It's available in both black and brown and comes in 4 x 6-inch, 5 x 7-inch, and 8 x 10-inch sizes. It can be displayed either vertically or horizontally on a tabletop, although no hanging hardware is included. The frame is made from bonded leather that has a slightly distressed finish and is trimmed with white saddle stitching. 

What to Look for When Buying Picture Frames

Style and Color

Picture frames come in many styles, from gilded and ornate to simple sheets of glass or plexiglass held together with clips. Choose a style that works with your décor, whether that means minimalist black frames or Scandi-style wood. For a gallery wall with an eclectic appeal, choose a multitude of frames in varying styles. For a collection of family photos, consider using the same style of frame to create a sense of cohesion and keep the focus on the subject matter. 

Materials and Finishes

Picture frames come in a variety of materials and finishes. Hanging picture frames are frequently fabricated in wood, metal, and plexiglass. Table-top frames may feature decorative finishes such as leather and silver plate, or may be embellished with anything from small mosaic tiles to seashells. Choose the materials and finishes that complement the images and your décor. If gifting a framed photo, choose a frame suited to the recipient’s taste to make it more meaningful. 

Format

Picture frames come in tabletop and hanging versions, as well as traditional and digital formats. To help narrow down your choices, figure out if you want  your photo to go on your desk, on a wall, or if you’d rather invest in a digital model where you can change out photos remotely. Frames also come in different presentation formats, from those designed so that the entire image runs from edge to edge, to those that are mounted on mats of varying widths that create white space around the image inside the frame.

FAQ
  • How do you hang a picture frame?

    The easiest method for hanging a picture frame is to use a dedicated picture-hanging hook, which comes with a nail and can be purchased in varying sizes. Once you have pinpointed where you want to hang the picture, thread the nail through the hole in the hook, hammer it into the wall, and hang the picture using the mounting hardware that is attached to the back of the frame (otherwise you can attach hooks and a wire to hang it). Very heavy or large format photos will require screws ideally inserted into wall studs with a drill. 

  • How do you measure a picture frame?

    A picture frame is measured using its inside dimensions. If you want to measure a picture frame, lay it on a table or other flat surface. Then measure its height and width from the inside of the frame, ignoring the outer frame itself, which will vary in thickness according to style and material.

  • How do you know what size picture frame you need?

    To determine which picture frame to buy, figure out the size of the photo you want to frame. You can measure its width and height with a ruler or measuring tape. The size picture frame you need refers to the size of the photo, not the frame itself.

Why Trust The Spruce?

Lexi Dwyer has written about office decorations, budget furniture, and nightstands for The Spruce. She is a big fan of the Ikea Ribba frames, which she recommends for those times when you're on a budget but need to fill a giant space.

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