I know, I know, it’s really early to be talking Christmas. It’s a big no-no and we want to enjoy fall, Halloween and Thanksgiving as much as anyone. But here’s why we’re bringing it up now. Invariably, every year people come to us with ideas for custom gifts they’d like to give someone, but they come talk to us in December. What tax season is for accountants, Christmas is for custom framers and we’re always swamped with orders. But we absolutely hate the idea of someone not being able to give the gift they dreamed of just because they weren’t thinking 3 months ahead. Plus, if you get your order in early, we’ve got a little something special for you! Without further ado, here are some of our favorite gift ideas that you really want to get the ball rolling on right now!
A great family portrait is like freezing a piece of your wedding cake, only way better. If you actually did freeze any of your wedding cake, you know that you were looking forward to reliving that magical day again. But what you actually got was probably a stale, slightly salmon-tasting memory trigger. Then it was gone. A family portrait, on the other hand, takes your family at a certain point in time and freezes them so you can look back at it over and over, remembering the kids when they were in kindergarten or that beautiful fall foliage before you moved to Florida. And they almost never taste like salmon. If you’re looking for some tips on getting a family portrait done, you can check out our interview with Solid Rock here, and if you want to turn a portrait into a great present, bring it into the shop and let us frame it up right.
Create a Shadow Box
This is another one of our favorites. Everyone has things they’ve saved over the years that mean a lot to them. Often it’s keepsakes from the kids, but it can also be movie tickets from a first date, letters from a soldier or fishing lures with a special memory. Usually these are thrown in a cigar box somewhere and looked at when it’s time to clean out the underwear drawer. But we have a better place for them. We love to create beautiful, meaningful shadow boxes out of these keepsakes. In fact, we wrote up a three part story about how we created one of these for a special client, but the short version is that you bring in what someone finds so special and we’ll help come up with a design to not only show it all off, but to protect them for a lifetime and make a piece of art in the process.
A Christmas Shadow Box
So maybe you do want to make someone a super personal gift like a shadowbox, but you don’t have access to their most precious, personal keepsakes. Here’s another option! We can create these themed works of art using your idea or one of ours! We made some great Christmas themed ones last year that make a great gift and look really personal without costing a fortune.
Pick out Some Art
The right piece of art can be both visually stunning and deeply meaningful. Since we’re big supporters of local artists ourselves, take a look at what you can buy right here in Tuscarawas County. We have every breed of artist here locally, from painting to pottery and glassblowing to woodworking. If you’re not sure about the right piece, stop into the shop and take a look at some of these local artists’ work. And, if you need any help, we can always help point you towards that perfect piece of art.
An Empty Picture Frame
OK, I know this sounds a little counter-intuitive, especially coming from people who make a living putting things into frames, but we actually also have some really amazing pre-made frames. But part of gift giving is matching the gift to the recipient, and if you’re going to give someone special a picture frame, it should be a special frame! Our frames are made by Roma Moulding. They’re primarily a supplier of some of the mouldings we use to put together our custom frames, but they also sell a line of pre-made picture frames that are to die for. These aren’t cheap, slapped-together frames made in Chinese factories and sold everywhere. These frames are assembled by artists in Italy and sold only to specialty framing shops. As a result, they look just stunning, with a level of detail and craftsmanship that is obvious when you pick them and feel the weight and look at the layers of carving, color, accents and lacquers that go into the rich patina.
There are lots of other things we’ve done in the past to create the perfect present, but these are a few of our favorites. But one thing they all have in common is that they’re all time consuming to create. They aren’t something that we can do if you bring us everything on December 18th. In fact, some years we’re so booked up that we can’t do them if you bring them to us on November 18th. So take a few minutes to think about a special gift for some of the most special people in your life. And if you come to us for help early, we have a little something for you. Get your Christmas order in before the end of October and we’ll do the work for free! That’s right, schedule your complete custom framing job before the end of the month and we won’t charge for our labor. And, just to “sweeten the pot,” we’ll include a free pound of Ben Heggy’s chocolates when you come to pick up your order! So get those Christmas orders in ASAP!