Framed Certificate Image

Helpful Tips for Framing Your Certificate or Award

Certificates and awards represent our accomplishments and hard work. In many cases, these can even represent an important milestone in a person's life, such as an educational degree from a school, university or collage. We should celebrate these achievements by framing these well-deserved certificates or awards with pride. So here are some helpful tips we've put together for you when it comes to framing your certificate like a pro. 

It’s Worth Framing

If there’s one thing worth framing, it’s a certificate. You’ve possibly spent years achieving this, so not only is it worth framing, but framing it with a quality certificate frame will also be worth every cent for decades to come.

If you want your certificate picture frame to last a lifetime, don't buy a cheap plastic frame. Choose a quality, Australian-made timber frame which can last for years to come. For example, the image below features a Chestnut Brown Certificate Frame which is made using 100% solid, eco-sustainable timber.

Certificate frame australia made

Framing can also increase the value of a certificate or award by giving it a professional look that adds credibility to the achievement it represents. Properly framed awards are more likely to be taken seriously than those presented without any protective measures in place.

You’ve earned this. So don’t just hide your certificate in a drawer. Frame it and be proud of your achievement! 

Choosing the Right Certificate Frame

Choosing the right frame for your certificate is essential as it not only protects your document but also enhances its aesthetic appeal. 


A high-quality frame will prevent exposure to dust, moisture, and sunlight - all elements that can cause damage over time.

Adding a mat board border around your document will also help protect it from any potential damage caused by coming into direct contact with the glass.

When it comes to the quality of the frame components, materials that are acid-free such as the mat board and backing. This will also help prevent any deterioration of the framed document over time as well. 

If you're really concerned about preserving your university testamur or diploma, then you could also consider just framing a high-quality colour copy or reproduction of your original document. This will allow you to keep the original document stored safely elsewhere. 


Some factors to consider when selecting a certificate frame include the style of the frame, size, colour and materials.

The style of the frame should complement the aesthetic of your certificate or award. For instance, if you have a traditional certificate or award, a traditional wood frame would be an excellent option. On the other hand, if your certificate has modern elements like bright colors and unique shapes/lines, then a modern metal look such as silver or gold could work better.

Colour is another important factor to consider when it comes to award or certificate framing. A neutral-colored mat board like white or off-white will help highlight the colours in your document, while darker looking frames can make brighter certificates stand out even more. It’s always better to opt for a simple design that doesn’t distract from the significance of the document. Ultimately though, it’s personal preference that should guide this decision- just make sure that whatever color combination you go with looks great together!

different colour style picture frames for certificates

Your framed certificate or award is likely going to hang on your wall for decades to come, so you may also want to consider choosing a frame style that will be classic and timeless rather than something that might just match your furniture or decor right now. Styles and trends may change, but your achievement will proudly stay with you forever. Like the image below, black certificate frames stand the test of time.

Black certificate frame

Adding a Distinctive Touch

To add a more distinctive touch when framing a certificate or award, consider adding a matboard border around the edges of your certificate or award for an extra touch of elegance. This will also help protect against any potential damage caused by direct contact with glass.

The image below features a traditional walnut timber & gold frame with a matboard border for a more distinctive look. 

framed diplomas on wall

What Sizes do Certificate Frames Come in?

Certificate frames come in a variety of sizes to accommodate different paper dimensions. The most common sized options for framed certificates and awards would be as follows:

These are standard sizes which are readily available in most major chain stores and online retailers. They can also be hung in either landscape or portrait orientations as well. 

A4 & A3 Certificate Frames

How Can I Frame an Unusual Sized Certificate or Award?

If you have an unusual or odd-sized certificate or award, then no problems. You could still use a standard-sized picture frame. Just choose a standard frame that is a bigger size than your document, and then separately order an extra, cut-to-size border mat for this, commonly called a mat board.

certificate framed with mat board

A matboard can be cut to a variety of common or custom sizes and will help centralized and balance your poster print inside the larger-sized standard frame.

Profile Australia offers a great range of cut-to-size custom matboards in a range of colours. Getting a custom cut matboard for a standard sized frame can also be more affordable than getting a custom-made picture frame, saving you money. It will also look great too!


Preparing Your Certificate

When you receive your certificate or an award, it is important to take good care of it. One way to do this is by framing it properly. There are a few things you need to keep in mind for proper preparation when it comes to framing your certificate or award. 


It is crucial to store your unframed certificates in a safe, dry place with stable temperature levels away from direct sunlight or humidity. Otherwise this might cause damage to the paper. 


Before you start framing make sure the certificate or award is kept clean and free of any smudges or fingerprints. Handle it carefully and avoid making any creases or wrinkles. Especially if it has been stored rolled up in a tube. 

Ensure your hands are clean and dry when handling your certificate, or you may even wish to wear cotton gloves too. 

if required, you can use a soft cloth such as a microfiber cloth to gently wipe the surface of the paper before placing it in your frame.\

How to Flatten a Rolled-up Certificate for Framing?

Certificates can commonly be stored rolled up in tubes. As a result, when you try to remove your document from the tube, may have a memory and want to stay curled up. 

rolled certificate in a tube

It can be difficult to frame a document that is not flat. One trick to help flatten a rolled-up certificate is to, is to carefully re-roll it in the opposite direction to the curl. The safest way to do this with less risk of kinking or creasing, is to roll your certificate carefully around the outside of the tube, in the opposite direction. You can then use some rubber bands to hold the document in place to leave it reset for a couple of hours, which should usually be enough to make it flat again. 

If the paper is still wavy, try leaving it set face down on a clean, flat surface under a flat board with something heavy on top to help weight it down such as some books. This should help make it flatter in another couple of hours or overnight if required. Once your certificate is flatter, it should make it easier for you to frame.


You also need to decide on the size of frame you need. Make sure that the dimensions are slightly larger than the certificate itself so that there's enough space for mounting. Adding a matboard will make the required frame size bigger, but it will also look more professional and stand our better as well. 

Mounting Your Certificate

After selecting a suitable frame, carefully mount your certificate using tabs of acid-free adhesive tape or archival photo corners. Ensure that there are no air bubbles between the document and the backing board before securing the frame together. With these steps followed diligently, your framed certificate will be ready for display in no time!

framing a certificate

We’ve created a helpful guide to take you through the steps of framing a document in a picture frame.

How and Where to Display Your Certificate

When it comes to displaying your certificate, there are several options available. The most common way is to frame it and hang it on a wall. However, before deciding where to display it, you should consider the type of certificate you have received and the purpose behind displaying it.

For example, if you have received an educational degree or a professional certification, then you may wish to display it in your office or workplace where potential clients or employers can see it. This will help showcase your expertise and could help your career growth or potentially lead to more business opportunities.

On the other hand, if your certificate is more of appreciation in nature, such as recognition for charity or community support, then displaying this in a more public space like a reception may be more appropriate. It provides a reminder of your business goodwill to your customers and others. 

hanging a framed award on a wall

You should also consider the placement of your framed award or certificate on the wall where it can be easily viewed by visitors, at eye level but also without getting exposed to direct sunlight or humidity.

When it comes time to hang your framed certificate or award, we’ve created a helpful guide to take you through the steps of hanging a picture frame onto a wall.

How to Maintain the Quality of Your Framed Certificate

The achievement of obtaining a certificate or award is a significant accomplishment that deserves to be celebrated and displayed. But it's important to take a few steps to best preserve your framed achievement. 

 Cleaning certificate frame

One tip for preserving your certificate or award is to avoid displaying it in direct sunlight or areas with extreme temperature changes, such as near heating vents or windows. These conditions can cause fading, warping, or even cracking of the paper.

Also, be mindful of where you hang your framed piece; avoid damp areas like basements or attics as they could cause mold growth that can also damage the paper. Periodically check and inspect your framed document every few years to ensure it is maintained in good condition. 

Final Thoughts on Framing Certificates

Framing your certificate or award is an important step in preserving and displaying your achievements. It is also an important task that requires careful consideration to ensure they are presented and protected in the best possible manner. This starts by choosing a quality frame that will best complement your certification.

By following these tips, you can ensure that your certificates and awards are well-preserved for years to come while adding value to their meaning and significance.

person holding framed award

Shop Australia's Best Range of Certificate Frames Online with Profile

Explore the complete range of Certificate & Award Frames from Profile Australia. Whether you're looking for popular sized poster framestimber framesnatural oak frames or standard black frames. Profile Australia offers a full range of poster framing solutions in all types of styles, shapes and sizes.

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Shop Now! All Profile certificate picture frames are proudly made in Australia with eco-sustainable timbers and a lifetime guarantee! 

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This article was written by Jared Davis. Jared is one of only a few qualified Master Certified Picture Framers in Australia with over 30 years of custom framing experience.

Jared is published author, writer and an industry-recognised educator who teaches classes and workshops to professional picture framers all around the world.

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