Different Picture Frame Styles

Colorful picture frames

Nothing adds a touch of class to your home quite like a framed photograph. Whether it’s a family portrait, special memory, or treasured artwork, hanging the right frame around it can make all the difference. But with so many frames out there, how do you know which one is right for you? Here’s a few different styles to help you find the perfect frame for your piece.

Vintage Frames 

Vintage frame beside leaves

If you’re looking for a classic look that will never go out of style, then vintage frames are just what you need! These decorative frames feature ornate detailing and elegant curves that give them an air of nostalgia and sophistication. Gold-tone metal frames in particular are hugely popular; their intricate designs and polished finish bring an extra sparkle to any room. If this is the type of look that appeals to you, then consider investing in some vintage picture frames – they will never go out of fashion!  

Tabletop Frames

Modern frame on a cabinet

Tabletop frames enable easy showcase of photos, certificates, or artwork without having to drill into any walls. These frames are typically equipped with a resilient board construction that allows safe and stable display while taking up minimal space. The frames usually have effortless opening which makes it easy to slide in items, such as mat board backing for optimal presentation. Furthermore, these types of picture frames come in different sizes and colors, giving you plenty of options to choose from. Tabletop frames make excellent gifts for friends and family, perfect for displaying your favorite memories or award certificates without worrying about wall space or damage.

Floater Frames

A floating frame

Floater frames, also known as hover frames, are an increasingly popular way to display artwork and photographs. By hovering the frame slightly off the wall it creates an optical illusion that makes it look like the artwork or photograph is suspended in mid-air. This technique is simple yet eye-catching and has been adopted both by modern art galleries and enthusiastic home decorators alike. They come in various shapes, materials, and sizes so you can choose one that is appropriate for the piece of art or photograph you want to hang. Floating frames are perfect for creating a unique visual impact on your lobby walls or any area of your business that needs some sprucing up!

Shadow Box Frames

Shadow box frame with seashells

Shadow box frames are unique pieces of art and design. They are unlike traditional frames, in that they are three-dimensional. These deep set frames feature a space between the back of the frame and front glass that creates extra depth, allowing you to display tangible items inside the frame, like sports memorabilia, rather than simple photos or artwork as you would with traditional picture frames. By using special mounting techniques, it is possible to turn even small scale objects into fantastic displays that draw attention. They also come in different sizes depending on how much space you need for your display item. Shadowbox frames make for stunning pieces of decor and showcase your treasured memories with pride.

Golden picture frames

No matter what type of photos or artwork pieces you want to display in your home, there is sure to be the perfect picture frame style for it! From classic vintage designs and contemporary modern looks, there are plenty of options available for your next framing project. If you have any questions about what we offer from our frame manufacturers, feel free to contact us for more information!

Butt Joint Assembly Process – 90 Degree Joining


AMP has developed a market exclusive Butt Joint Assembly Method for joining together both interior and exterior trim sizes up to 1″ x 6″. The joining process consist of an AMP or Alfamacchine branded Underpinner Joining Machine equipped with a 90-degree Material Fencing System.

The material fencing consists of a Dual Position Arm, a Fixed Rear Fence with Magnetic Inserts, and three (3) different sized Spacer Blocks for Off-Set Joining.

A Double Hydraulic Clamping System is used for securing the trim moulding in place during the joining process.

Value of using our Backnailer Joining Machinery

  • Replaces common method of stapling and all production related issues
    • Improve the quality of your cased doors
    • Speed up the application of casing to your doors
    • Eliminate breakage in transporting your cased door

The Butt Joint Assembly System can be purchased separately with new machines or can be field installed on existing units.

Not Just For Picture Framing: The Versatility of Underpinners


From picture frames to furniture, there is a great deal of versatility in what you can do with an underpinner. An underpinner is a versatile tool used in woodworking and other projects that involve frame assembly. It is a simple device, usually consisting of two parts, which helps you create strong joints and construct frames with ease. It has many uses, from large construction projects to small hobbyist tasks. This blog post will explore the many uses for an underpinner and why it should be part of your toolbox.

Picture Framing 


One of the most common uses for an underpinner is framing pictures or art. When making a frame, you have to join moulding together to make a corner with v nails. An underpinner does this quickly and easily and even helps to clamp down on the wood so that it doesn’t move during the process. This allows you to complete your project quickly and with professional results. Underpinners come in various sizes depending on the size of the frame you are making. You can even get a  pneumatic underpinner, which is faster, more powerful, and requires less effort than its manual counterpart. This is because it uses compressed air to fire the nail into place quickly and efficiently. The pneumatic underpinner also has adjustable settings for different nail sizes, making it suitable for a variety of projects. Plus, the air compressor and hoses can be easily stored away when not in use. This can be great for high production use for businesses that produce a large volume of picture frames. 

Furniture Making 

Framed table and chair

Another common use for an underpinner is furniture making. Whether you are creating something as simple as a coffee table or as complex as a bedroom set, an underpinner can help you make sure that all joints are secure and tight-fitting. Using an underpinner drastically improves the quality of any furniture piece by providing added strength to joints, such as mitered corners. By driving nails through two adjacent pieces of wood, an underpinner creates a connection with more holding power compared to standard glue alone. Additionally, using an underpinner prevents unsightly gaps from forming between wood pieces due to seasonal changes in humidity levels. As such, the use of an underpinner is essential for producing robust and high-quality furniture pieces.

Woodworking Projects 

Saw and wood

Underpinners are a versatile and essential tool in any woodworking shop. They are commonly used for all sorts of projects, from building intricate cabinetry to creating custom furniture. Underpinners are also popular for elaborately detailed moldings and trim. One of the most popular applications for this tool is to create door and window frames with no gaps between the frame and the wall, a process which helps preserve the integrity of the woodwork. With their quick setup time and high precision level, underpinners remain an irreplaceable tool in many woodworking shops today. The versatility of this tool allows it to be used on any type of project where two pieces need to be joined securely together at the corner joint – whether that joint is visible or hidden from view when finished. 

Wood on a workbench

Whether you’re tackling a construction project like building furniture or finishing up a picture frame for your home office, an underpinner should always be part of your toolbox! Its versatility allows it to be used in numerous applications and its ease-of-use makes it quick and easy to use even if you have limited experience working with wood joinery tools. With an underpinner at hand, any project can turn out with professional results! If you’re in need of an underpinner, feel free to contact us with any questions or to request a quote. 

What is a Mitre Saw?

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A mitre saw is a power tool with a circular saw that is used for making accurate and precise cuts at a variety of angles, often with a laser guide. This saw is essential for many woodworking and construction projects. Unlike the chop saw, which is used to cut metal, the mitre saw is primarily used for wood. The mitre saw gets its name from the mitre joint, which is a joint that is cut at an angle other than 90 degrees.

How Does a Mitre Saw Work?

Mitre Saw Clamp

A mitre saw works by holding the workpiece securely in place while the circular saw blade moves up and down to make the cut in the wood material. The blade on a mitre saw can be positioned at a variety of angles, which makes it possible to create different types of cuts. For example, you can use a mitre saw to create 45-degree and 90-degree cuts, as well as other angles in between.

Compound And Sliding Mitre Saws

There are two main types of mitre saws: compound and sliding. Compound mitre saws are able to make both horizontal and vertical cuts, while sliding mitre saws can only make horizontal cuts. Compound mitre cuts are where the saw is both in a mitre position and a bevel position at the same time. Sliding mitre saws are often preferred for their precision and accuracy.

What Are the Benefits of Using a Mitre Saw?

Meter Saw

One of the biggest benefits of using a mitre saw is that it allows you to make very precise and accurate cuts. This is because the blade on a miter saw can be positioned at exactly the angle that you need to adjust to. This means that you won’t have to worry about your cuts being off by even a fraction of an inch.

Another benefit of using a mitre saw is that it is very versatile. This tool can be used for a variety of different wood projects, including trim work, crown moulding, frame construction, and more. Additionally, mitre saws are relatively easy to use, which makes them a great option for both beginner woodworkers and experienced professionals alike.

What Can You Do With A Mitre Saw?

Mitre saws are extremely versatile tools that can be used for all sorts of different projects. Some of the most common uses for mitre saws include:

– Crown moulding

– Window casings

– Picture frames

– Wainscoting

– Baseboards

-Fence cutting

What Kind of Mitre Saw Does Piel Carry?

Piel Associates offers AMP’s T-400 Saw, which is designed to precisely cut 45° mitre joints for picture framing and woodworking applications such as windows, doors, and furniture components. 

The T-400 can handle all wood, plastic and MDF with moulding height up to 3 1/2″ moulding width up to 4″. The T-400 is a heavy duty saw built for medium to high production type environments. It’s designed with a unique pneumatic system that controls the down-stroke movement of dual cutting blades resulting in precise cutting with a quick return process. 

Two saw blades are fixed at 45° angles and vertically move up and down. 

With each stroke, the two mitres are cut from the moulding with the least amount of moulding scrap. 

During the cutting process, the moulding is held firmly in place by four pneumatic clamps ensuring high quality cutting.

If you’d like to inquire about AMP’s double mitre saw, feel free to contact us today! 

The V-Nail Benefits Guide

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The V nail is commonly used in conservation and framing. They provide many benefits over other types of fasteners, including improved holding power, easier installation, and greater versatility. In addition, the v nail is less likely to damage the artwork or frame during installation. Here are some additional benefits of v nails:

A V-nail is less likely to loosen over time:

Unlike other types of fasteners, the v nail are designed to grip the wood more tightly as they age. This means that your artwork will be better protected against vibration and impact over time.

A V nail can be removed without damaging the frame:

If you need to remove your artwork from the frame for any reason, you can do so without damaging the frame with the v nail. This is not the case with other types of fasteners, which can often leave unsightly holes or scratches.

A V nail can come in a variety of sizes and finishes:

The V nail is available in a wide range of sizes and finishes to match any frame style. Whether you’re looking for a tiny nail for a delicate frame or a large nail for a heavy-duty frame, you’ll be able to find what you need.

The V nail is an essential part of any professional framer’s toolkit:

If you’re planning on having your artwork professionally framed, make sure to ask for a v nail to be used. This will ensure that your artwork is properly protected for years to come.


Why you should use v-nail in your next project


The V-nail is an essential tool for anyone working with wood framing, paneling, or any other type of wood construction. There are many advantages to using a v nail over other types of nails. First, they are much stronger and will not pull out as easily. Second, they create a tighter joint, which is important for preventing air and water leaks. Third, they are less likely to split the wood. And fourth, they are less likely to leave noticeable holes. All of these factors make v-nails the ideal choice for anyone looking to create a professional woodworking project. So if you’re planning your next project, be sure to pick up a few v-nails and give them a try. You won’t be disappointed.

The Right Nail


When it comes to choosing the right type of nail for your project, there are many factors to consider. One important consideration is the shape of the nail. Traditional nails have a round head, while v-nails have a V-shaped head. V-nails are specifically designed for use in framing applications. The V-shape enables them to grip the wood more securely, making them less likely to pop out over time. In addition, v-nails are less likely to split the wood when driven in, making them ideal for use with delicate or expensive frames. While v-nails may cost slightly more than traditional nails, they provide a stronger and more durable hold, making them worth the investment.

Differences in Vnail Grind Types

Did you ever wonder about the different types of V-nails?


You might have to use a microscope to see the difference, but….

SPT or Softwood nails are sharpened on the inside edge only, also they have a sharper angle grind to “cut” thru rather than push.

Softwoods such as poplar, pine and cedar generally have a more open grain and require a sharper v-nail to join the molding.

You would also use softwood v-nails for plastic/polystyrene frame molding.


HPT or Hardwood v-nails are sharpened on both edges to counter the resistance of such woods.

Hardwood nails have a blunter grind as well.

Hardwoods such as oak, ash, hickory, cherry, maple, and walnut have a tighter grain and require a blunt v-nail to join the molding.


MDF nails are slightly thicker than the hard or soft to “push” into and push aside the Fiberboard particles


vNail Grind Types

AMP Color Identification Chart for V-Nail Types

SW (Transparent)

MW/HW (Green)

HDF (Red)

Click Here to Shop All Sizes and Types of V-Nails

6 Best Picture Frame Joiners For Perfect Frames

Picture Frame Joiners

What if joining picture frames could be easier than ever before? Forget driving nails into the side of the frame. What you really need are good picture frame joiners that help you master the art of V-nailing, which makes joining frames quicker than you can imagine.

Wondering which picture frame corner joiners are best? Keep reading to discover our top recommendations for creating frames that are their own work of art.

1: U200

Unlike some of the other picture frame joiners on this list, the U200 is completely freestanding. And it is best if you only need light production of picture frames. For example, if you are an individual artist or small studio.

We love that this comes with a foot pedal to insert the V-nail. It makes operating the device much more convenient.

2: U300

The U300 is the next step up when it comes to picture frame joiner design. And it offers more options: you can use this semi-automatic joiner in a freestanding mode or a benchtop mode.

While it’s still better for low production rather than heavy production, this joiner can help you produce more frames than the U200 in a shorter amount of time. And the pneumatic foot actuator makes operating the U300 seamless for just about everybody.

3: U300P

Who needs the U300P? Someone who has a “need for speed.”

That’s because this upgraded version of the U300 can help you produce up to 200 joined frames per hour, all while offering the same choice between freestanding and benchtop use. And this semi-automatic joiner is proof that you don’t have to sacrifice quality for speed so long as you find the right joiner.

4: U400

Despite being a step above the U300 models, the U400 is not designed to beat the U300P in terms of frames created per hour. Instead, this model is designed for low production usage with a specialization in creating larger frames.

With the U400, you can join frames that are up to 5 – 1/2″ wide. And the dual-hand lever makes actually positioning the V-nails on these larger frames very easy and intuitive.

5: U500

Need to produce many frames quickly and the U300P isn’t enough for you? In that case, you may need the U500, which is capable of producing up to 300 joined frames per hour.

This is a production-level device that has special programming. Thanks to this programming, the joiner can perfectly recall and produce frames with a single V-nail, all while retaining perfect consistency and quality.

6: U600

Like the U500, the U600 is capable of producing up to 300 joined frames per hour. However, this device is designed for joining frames that may require fasteners of different sizes as joining frames of common millimeter sizes.

Beyond that difference, you get the same features we love about the U500. That includes the perfect computer recall as well as the capacity for high output production.

Getting the Best Picture Frame Joiners

Now you know what the best picture frame joiners are. But do you know where you can find these joiners and other specialized equipment for artists and manufacturers alike?

At Piel Associates, we offer the equipment and service you’ve been waiting for. To see how we can help your business, just contact us today!

Polystyrene Cutting Tips

What is polystyrene? 

Polystyrene is one of the most widely used kinds of plastic in the world. It can be found in disposable cutlery, DVD cases, packing materials and drinking cups. 

What are some of the benefits of using polystyrene? 

  • It will not warp from changes in temperature or humidity. It is also waterproof and cannot be damaged by insects. 
  • It cuts and joins easier and faster than wood moulding, cutting down on manufacturing time and money.
  • All sticks are a uniform 9.5 ft. long, making ordering hassle-free. 
  • It is lighter than wood, so you save on shipping.
  • It costs less than wood; giving your customers an inexpensive, high-quality alternative to wood your customers will appreciate

What type of saw do I need to use to cut your moulding? 

Polystyrene moulding can be cut by a regular wood saw. We recommend saw blades with less than 120 teeth, with a 36 tooth blade being ideal. Poly moulding cuts easily with no resistance so it is recommended to cut through it quickly. By using the appropriate blade and cutting technique you will not have to worry about the plastic melting. 

How many RPM’s should my saw be running at? 

Between 2,400 and 3,000 is the ideal range. If it is too low, the saw will build up heat and melt the moulding. If it is too high, it will cause your saw to vibrate and make uneven cuts. 

Can polystyrene moulding be cut using a chopper? 


What type of glue should I be using? 

You should be using some type of plastic glue. We recommend our poly glue: Piel Associates Glue Tape & Hardware. For a less expensive alternative, PVC glue from any hardware store would work well, although it will take longer to dry (approx. 1 hour). 

Can I join the frame using an underpinner? 

Yes, you can join polystyrene frames just like you would with wood moulding. Make sure the pins are not too close to the edge of the frame corners as they can split. 

How to Use Our V-Nails: A Brief Guide


Are you completing a project that calls for v-nails or wondering what they are?

We’ve put together a guide on using v-nails to make a picture frame, complete with tips on what kind of v-nails to use and what tools are available for a successful installation.

Continue reading to learn more about v-nails and how to use them.

What Are V-Nails?

V-nails are most commonly known as a type of nail that is used to bind the corners of a picture frame.

These nails are pushed, sharp edge first, into the corner joint of the frame by manual tools. There are several types and sizes of v-nails, available to suit any project you’re completing.

If you’re working with harder wood types such as Walnut, Cherry, Maple, and Ash, you’ll need Hard Power Twist v-nails. Alternatively, if you’re completing a frame using softer wood, such as Cedar, Poplar, and Banak, the Soft Power Twist v-nails will be best for you.

These different types of v-nails also work with materials such as Hard Fiberboard or plastic. The sizes of v-nails range from 5mm to 15mm, offering you a substantial variation to choose from.

Installing v-nails can be difficult, but with the right tools, you won’t have any issues.

Helpful Tools to Install V-Nails With

If you’re unfamiliar with installing v-nails or you only occasionally use them, using a manual tool will help you complete your frame easily.

One of the most simple tools to use for installing v-nails is a handheld tool that magnetically holds your v-nails, allowing you to simply push the staple into the frame using the tool.

If you’re a frequent user of v-nails and you’re searching for a handy tool to do the job for you, there are joiners and nailers that powerfully and seamlessly drive v-nails into your projects.

You can find most of these tools in your local hardware or department store. Of course, you can drive v-nails into your frames without extra tools, but this can be difficult to do without splintering the material you’re working with.

How to Use V-Nails in a Frame

Since v-nails are most commonly used in picture framing, this guide exemplifies how to install v-nails in a frame successfully.

Prepare your project by first cutting your material into 4 frame edges, gathering the v-nails of your choice, having wood glue on hand, and choosing what tool you’ll use.

Installing V-Nails

1. Prepare the edges of your cut frame by applying wood glue on each end and spreading it evenly.

2. Join the glued ends of your frame together.

3. Position your v-nail against the lined-up frame edge.

4. Using a tool you’ve chosen or a hammer, firmly drive the v-nail into the joined edge. Repeat this for all 4 edges of the frame.

5. Add another v-nail towards the center of the joined frame on each side, completing the frame with 8 v-nails installed.

6. Tighten the frame with a band or clamp for at least 30 minutes to let the glue dry.

You’ve now successfully completed a frame with v-nails.

Completing a Project With V-Nails

Whether you’re experienced with v-nails or not, learning more about the nail and what it does is useful. V-nails are great to use when building picture frames.

By consulting our brief guide, you’re able to finish your own project today. If you’re looking for the right v-nails for you, take a look at our page or contact us to get a quote today.

4 Custom Picture Framing Trends For Framing Companies


Interior design never stops moving; new trends are always catching. This is very much the case for custom picture framing trends as homeowners look for fresh and creative ways to add to the aesthetics of their space.

Photographs and art help to preserve important memories and associations for us. Where we choose to hang them in our homes and the frames that we use are just as important as the pictures that we are choosing.

In this blog post, we will take a look at four exciting picture framing trends that are already proving to be popular in 2021. Keep reading to learn more about what you should know going forward.


1. Shadow-Box

Simply put, a shadow-box is an enclosed glass-front display case that contains an object, typically with personal or artistic significance. Shadow-boxes are highly versatile, and they are becoming increasingly popular as custom picture frames.

Shadow-boxes have an aesthetic beauty that truly highlights important memorabilia or images. As they are generally deeper than traditional frames, they tend to draw a person deeper into the photograph or art piece held within.

The amount of white space within the frame is very versatile with shadow-boxes, as is the actual size of the shadow-box frame itself.

2. Float Frames

As the name suggests, float frames create the appearance of the artwork floating within the frame. This can create the feeling of three-dimensional depth for the viewer and really add to the beauty of a room or space.

Float frames usually pair with canvas artwork, and the frame plays an integral part in the overall visual appeal. The ability to be creative and incorporate the wall color behind the frame into the effect makes this an increasingly popular trend in modern homes.

For the best picture framing supplies for float frames (and others), choose Piel Associates.

3. Leather Frames

Leather frames are durable and versatile, given the different colors and textures possible.

High-quality leather frames are a timeless addition to any home or office and make for a wonderful birthday or anniversary gift. Leather frames are proving popular again in 2021, combining a vintage and natural feel that is also truly artistic.

4. Corner Frames

Corner picture frames add incredible visual depth to spaces by fitting into the corners of rooms or wrapping around the angles of walls. They can make an excellent focal point for any space.

Corner frames are more intricate than traditional ‘flat’ frames but create stunning visual effects that add to the feel of any room. We expect that this exciting trend will continue in 2021.

Choose Us for Your Custom Picture Framing Tools & Supplies

For more than 20 years, Piel Associates has provided a quality picture framing service for our clients. The above custom picture framing trends are sure to attract more and more attention and interest as 2021 progresses.

For more information on our range of supplies and tools, contact our friendly team here. We look forward to talking with you.