A client arrived in the shop with this wonderful piece of original art. It is a large decorative fan made from handmade papers--like a stained glass abstraction of a fan. The shape and colors are striking, but the original framing was ready for change. It was beautifully done for its day: hand-sewn to a hard linen-lined substrate and encased in an acrylic box. (Acrylic removed, below)
Acid free materials became readily available somewhere around 1985. Anything that was framed before that could probably stand to be freshened-up. Here the linen backing had discolored over time. I only use acid free materials in the shop. I can also distinguish acidic mats just on their appearance, so if you're unsure, just let me take a look. (Same goes for UV glass, btw. The difference between it and regular glass is practically imperceptible to normal people, but a framer can let you know what's what.)
But I digress. To reframe this beauty the client went for a clean, modern, gallery style. White-on-white is a very contemporary way to showcase art. It looks great on colorful walls with white trim, and also in all white gallery spaces.
The fan was floated on a crisp white linen mat and secured by a few small stitches. No adhesives. This fan could be removed from the box in the future in exactly the same condition it entered the shop. That is the job of a conservation framer.
With museum glass on here you can hardly tell there's any glass on it at all. A total showstopper at 40 x 32."