Is Custom Picture Framing Green?

How does a picture framing business get to be officially green? Art Loft Framing is a certified green business through the Alameda County Green Business Program. We are listed on their website as a certified green picture framer. This endeavor was no easy task. The certification process took me over 4 months to complete. One starts by filling out a lengthy on line questionnaire about your existing business.  This picture framer had to fill out  every section of the questionnaire. No omissions were allowed. By answering all the questions, the Green Business Program had a thumbnail sketch of this picture framing business and what alterations were needed. Trust me, there were a lot.


Firstly, every light bulb was converted to LED in the store. This included the fluorescents in the workroom. My electric bill declined by over 50% by making this change. Designing a picture frame is now easier on the sales counter since the new lighting is brighter and as close to natural daylight as possible. The picture frame corner samples and matting colors are brighter and truer to reality than before. Secondly, and fortunately, we already had an energy efficient heating system which uses very little gas. This was our first inspection. The PG&E representative passed us with flying colors.


Our second inspection was by the East Bay Municipal Utility District. A low flow faucet adaptor was installed as well as a low flow toilet. The third inspection was by the City of Oakland whose representative confirmed that every product which was recyclable was being recycled. Unfortunately, our picture framing glass scrap and wood picture framing scrap is not recyclable. They inspected for water and food item recycling as well. Our picture frame shop now uses 30% recycled content printing paper and paper towels. All cleaning and glass cleaning is done with reusable micro fiber towels.


The final inspection was by the Green Business Program itself. Their representative scoured the store looking for chemical hazards. she found a lot and who would have guessed. “Simple Green” concentrate replaced the 409 and Comet cleansers. WD-40 in aerosol was eliminated. All aerosols which had a non aerosol equivalent were removed. Also, anti-bacterial hand soap was replaced with non anti-bacterial hand soap. all these items were dropped of at the county waste disposal site and their drop off was documented with a receipt.


Art Loft Framing is now a green compliant business and proud of it!




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