Framing Matters

by Chris A. Paschke, CPF GCF



IEA Newsletter - Wax-On, March 2011

"Wax Hangers"


At the 2010 IEA event in San Francisco I was lucky enough to receive a Rebecca Crowell original in our art gift exchange (photo 1). It was unframed and she had attached a commercial linen hanger to the center back of the hardboard using wax medium as the adhesive (photo 2). A commercial linen hanger with a metal grommet is a good choice for adhering to the back of an unframed panel as it will not tear and may easily be removed if needed. Wax is often used as an adhesive in museums as it is a natural, reversible medium that is rather noninvasive once you get past the absorption issue.


Wax is a natural binding adhesive for use with encaustic as it is the same medium as the painting and generally bonds well to typical wood, hardboard and rag substrates. The first step was to remove the hanger and clean the board back. The hanger easily pulled from the board and the excess was scraped from the board with a flat head screwdriver, but any metal scraping tool or chisel would have worked (photo 3). Once cleaned It could be framed.








photo 1

A fabulous 6x6" cold encaustic

on 1/4" birch panel.

Artwork "Collonade" courtesy of Rebecca Crowell 2010










photo 2

The linen hanger

has a metal grommet

to prevent tearing over time.












photo 3

Remove the excess wax and adhesive

with a metal scraper of screwdriver.









I wanted to help protect the outer edges and the face of the original by placing it in a platform float frame. I selected the long base matte black PFF-708100 (photo 3). This frame uses a 1/2" lifter to raise the painted panel closer to the frame face.










photo 4

Platform Float Frame














photo 5

The installed art

floats inside the frame edges.









The 7x7" outside corner dimensions of the frame allows for the art a 1/4" float space between it and the sides of the frame. The 1/2" platform lifts the panel to 1/4" from the frame face. Once the art is glued to the lifter the back of the frame is wired with D-rings, coated wire and bumpers to keep it level on and evenly spaced from the wall (photo 6). Rebecca's card was placed on the back and the name and date of the art is noted.










photo 6

Fitted with hangers and wire.








Whether left with the linen tab or placed in a custom made frame the art remains something of beauty to last a lifetime. But with the frame it has been protected and the narrow black border has enhanced the fine black carved line work in the frame making is much more noticeable when first viewed. I love my newest collectible!




Chris Paschke, CPF GCF

Designs Ink

785 Tucker Road, Suite G-183

Tehachapi, CA 93561



For more information on float frames or additional framing articles,




Copyright Chris A Paschke, 2011