Framed poetry combines imagery with emotion. Whether you choose to frame your own personal poetry or a poem you have read, a frame can enhance the meaning of the poem while decorating your home. The idea you create for each individual poem should reflect the meaning of the poem. Create framed poetry with a combination of the principles of design, relevant artwork and mat board to enhance feeling of the framed poetry.
Text is one of the most important parts of a framed poem. Your font choice should represent the meaning of the poem. Fonts should be readable. Never use all capital letters, especially with Old English style fonts. Italics, calligraphy or handwritten fonts for show emotion for poems with a theme of love or one that speaks of a special moment. Bold fonts, which provide visual contrast, should be used only for the title. Fun fonts used for emphasis in modernistic poetry are acceptable if used sparingly. Visually attractive, readable fonts are necessary so that your choice of text does not appear as a typographical error.
Frame poetry should provide some type of artwork around the body of the poem for a visual connection to the emotion of the poetry. Artwork should emphasize the message of the poem, without confusing the meaning. The principles of design are important when framing poetry. Contrast, repetition, alignment and proximity of your entire layout will make or break the look of your framed poetry.
Mat board creates a border around framed poetry and offers a finished, professional touch to the display. Paper mats are the least expensive but are not good for long-term framing. Pre-cut Alpha cellulose mats, which have a neutral pH, are a better choice for long-term framing. Mat board prevents moisture from ruining your framed poetry, allowing air to flow between the glass of the frame and the poetry page.
For the best visual experience, the mat board should be at least 3-inches wide on the top and sides. Visual weight is achieved by using mat board wider on the bottom than on the top and sides but is not necessary. Interest can be added by using two mats of different sizes or colors or by using a beveled mat board. Mats cut out into different shapes, such as a circle and a square, adds interest to the display if no artwork is used. Mat board is found at hobby or art supply stores.
Frames come in all types of sizes, colors and styles. Inexpensive frames such as poster frames are flatter than regular picture frames, however, a more expensive frame adds a detailed touch to the poetry. Different styles of frames offer an emotional tie to your poetry. Poetry without artwork benefits from a fancier style frame, whereas frames for dramatic art boarders look better when subtle. When no artwork is used, a frame can draw attention to what is inside the frame and add important visual contrast. Artwork and the words of the poetry should be the main focus of the display.
RS Wagner began writing professionally in 1997 as a frequent contributor to the "Sun Herald's" column, "What's Cookin'." She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in graphic design from William Carey University.