Ollie’s Bargain Outlet surprised me yet again with good-quality poster frames! Even though I’m a realistic person and these are cheap frames, they’re very good for their class! I love them!
Detachable frames market themselves as being much easier and simpler to set up than one-piece frames. With detachable frames, your posters will look great, too. This simply isn’t the case. One-piece frames are more durable, look so much more professional, and aren’t hard to work with if they’re decent frames.
For a bit of time, I’d been hunting for a good bargain on decent 24×36″ poster frames for my posters. I don’t like wide frames, fancy frames, or the shiny beveled frames. My style is a solid color, no embellishment or design, flat, and as thin as I can get it. I spent two or so weeks checking online and in stores for acceptable frames that, in a broad sense, matched what I was looking for. I knew I couldn’t be too picky, since I wasn’t about to pay $60 per frame, but I wasn’t going to accept a frame I didn’t like, either.
I wanted to find solid frames to replace my old frames. I was using the detachable frames. Over time, I became less and less satisfied with the detachable frames. They were flimsy, prone to scratching, and the frame pieces never stayed in place. Therefore, they gave off a sloppy, overly cheap look that I wasn’t able to accept after a few years.
When I went frame-seeking, I was surprised and dismayed at how many stores carried the detachable frames. The common alternative were thick, shiny, beveled frames I couldn’t accept. I must have checked 8 stores in town and over a dozen websites online. And, then, because I thought, “Why not?” I went to Ollie’s Bargain Outlet. With the expectation that I’d find nothing acceptable, I found the frames section and–there were 24×36″ decently-thin and flat, black frames for $6.99 each! At first, I couldn’t believe it. But then, thrilled, I bought three!
The Frames Overview
I went home and immediately set about putting my precious, self-printed posters that I made into the new frames! The frames felt slightly cheap, but far exceeded my expectations for durability, simplistic design, and above all, ease of installing for my posters. All sides of the frames themselves felt decent and the plastic covers were clean and likewise felt decent. When I took one of the frames apart to place one of my posters, I was satisfied with the quality and thickness of the cardboard backing piece, too. The hanging hardware piece on the back of the frames wasn’t overly loose or flimsy, either. I was very pleased!
However, being realistic, I fully understood that these poster frames offer no professional benefits, such as UV-resistance or archival-quality construction. Being aware of this, I was fine with my purchase.
Installing my Posters
It wasn’t too hard. All I used was a butter knife to bend all the tabs back without hurting my fingers. Another plus: the tabs weren’t overly thin or flimsy. I went slow and none of them felt in the slightest like they wanted to snap off. I inserted 2 of my posters with no problem. However, I had to set my third poster out flat underneath the plastic from my old, detachable frames to try to flatten it out. While waiting on that, I hung my other two posters in their new frames.
A Warning about Detachable Frames
For several years, I had my posters hung up in cheap, detachable frames you buy almost anywhere. I would advise everyone against buying them! The frame pieces never stayed on securely for me, causing my posters to look overly cheap. The pieces would loosen at the edges. In addition, I could never line them up “just so” to give the overall frame a nice “complete” look. Secondly, the acrylic piece that protects the poster was prone to scratching and even chipping and breaking. The frame pieces themselves were prone to long scratches, too. My plastic pieces did all three over time: nasty, imperfect “streaks” appeared on the lower areas; the frame edges cracked and even chipped. And third, all of my detachable poster frames were 24×36″. However, my third poster, the one I had to lay out to flatten, was too big for it’s detachable frame! This meant the frame was smaller than 24×36″ as it claimed. At that time, I had decided to fold the edges of the poster down, which was a mistake. That poster not only suffered from bent edges, but also slight rips as I had tried to position it well in the detachable frame.
So, my advise is, avoid buying detachable poster frames! You may only be able to afford cheap frames, but your posters don’t have to look tacky and suffer because of it!
I don’t have the budget to spend $150 to have my posters professionally framed. In the future I may — and I’ll definitely do so if I can afford it! But right now, I’m more than satisfied with how these Ollie’s 24×36″, cheap black frames look and perform. They’re lightweight, don’t feel overly flimsy, and weren’t difficult to work with. My posters look so much better now! And I’m not worried they’ll become damaged in these frames. If you have an Ollie’s Bargain Outlet in your town, hurry over and get some of these frames!