Italian 16th century frame with sgraffito
Images show the Italian 16th century frame with sgraffito that we made. The gold arabesque work to the frieze is called sgraffito, a technique achieved by painting a layer of tempera (usually black but sometimes a dark blue or burgundy) directly onto the gilded surface. The arabesque design is drawn onto the tempera; a tool is then used to scratch through the painted surface following the drawings to reveal the gold beneath. It is a lengthy process, but when complete offers a unique contrast between the tempera's matt appearance and the luster of the gold. The entire frame was then distressed and aged to replicate a frame from the 16th century. The larger frame in the images is the reproduction and the smaller being the antique frame used as our model.