STRETCHING YOUR CANVAS GICLEE PRINT
Above you will see photos of the wooden stretcher bars that are used to support your canvas giclee print. As you can see in the first photo, they fit together by pushing the two bars in the groves with all four stretcher bars until you create a perfect square. Then once you have a good fit, your fine art print is stapled to the support frame.
Also, as you can see below, stretcher bars come in different thicknesses and quality.
One thing to note, is that the larger the canvas, the more support the frame will need to have. Smaller canvases are fine with just the four stretcher bars snapped together, where a larger canvas may benefit from extra support as shown below
I have stretched many canvases onto support frames, but i don't enjoy doing it. I now buy my canvases already stretched because i don't have alot of spare time to do canvas stretching, i'd prefer to use my time painting! If you want to stretch your own canvas you will need some tools, like the staple gun and the canvas stretcher tool, which wil also cost you some money. The wooden bars cost different amounts depending on the size of the bar. They range from approximately $2.00 - $12.00 per bar, and then you would need 4 of them.
I would advise you to consider having a professional framer attach your canvas to a support. Usually the cost for a 24 x 36 canvas print to be stretched onto a support frame by a professional runs around $65.00 - $85.00.
You can take a look at the video below to get an idea of how it is done - and if you prefer to do it yourself, go for it!
Once your canvas is stretched onto the wooden support, it is ready to be hung on the wall! I think a canvas without an outer frame is just fine! But if you want to put a decorative frame around your canvas, you can go to a framing shop, or even "Michaels"" (they often have 60% off coupons!) and pick out an outer decorative frame. Of course that is another expense that can get fairly pricey. Many times i have found wonderful old frames at the flea market or thrift shop, and my canvases will just tuck right into the back of the frame perfectly. These frames have never cost me more than $20.00, and they look amazing painted and distressed. Since your canvas will probably be a standard size it may not be that hard to find one. So just consider hanging your print as is, and keeping an eye out for older frames to tuck your canvas in. It's really fun to find one that fits your print !
When you recieve your print from me, it will have a 2 1/2 inch white border which is the part you will staple onto your support. Some canvases are printed in a way that is called a "Gallery wrap", where the print extends around the sides. I prefer the white margin because it shows where the painting actually starts and finishes. It is just my preference... i have had my prints done both ways.
I hope this helps you understand a little more about the process of supporting your fine art canvas, but if you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact me!