Get those holiday snaps, family photos and your three year old’s masterpieces shown off properly…
40 Jalan Hang Tuah
37 Taman Skudai Baru
T: (018) 6019 7133 639
Jackson and his wife have run their picture framing business from here (their home) for 18 years and they are brilliant. If you are sick of paying Holland Village prices or have a heap of framing that you need to get done and want something that is even better value (and better finished) that our much loved and pretty reasonably priced Star Framers off Farer Road (see entry at the end of this page), then hop over to Johor Bahru and go and see him. While you are there, it could only be called good use of time to do some shopping (great fakes in Holiday Plaza but you’ve got to be prepared to hunt around for them) and eating (try the Peking duck in the Chinese restaurant on the 2nd floor of the Mutiara Hotel, handily right next door to Holiday Plaza). Jackson speaks Malay and Chinese fluently as well as a bit of English. To be sure he’ll be around when you are, the best idea is to send him a simple email (in English) to this address: firstname.lastname@example.org. Or get your friend who speaks Malay or Chinese to call him and book you in (thank you Carla & Angel). Once you are there and face to face with each other, communication in English is easy. Plus you can physically see what frames and mountings you are choosing, so it’s all quite straight forward. Jackson is very professional and can make helpful suggestions in terms of the colours mounts should be etc…when you are framing 33 pictures in a oner, you need this as a sanity check. He has a good choice of frames and quite a few samples and examples to look at. Quick turn around time too. Ours was 2 weeks, which is impressive.
BTW: Jackson is slightly out of town in a leafy suburb, about a 10 minute drive from the centre of Johor Baru. Our GPS failed us and couldn’t recognise Jackson’s street name, so we just hailed a cab in JB and followed behind it all the way to his house. Worth doing rather than map reading and cost 20RM (just under $10). Also, if you are crossing the Causeway from SG to JB on a weekend, make sure you go early as traffic can be murder. You can then kill time with a buffet brek at the very smart – no, really, it is – Thistle Hotel (formerly the Hyatt) right in the centre of town. Far more civilised than queuing in traffic…and they will even let you use their pool, post breakfast.
Opening Times: By appointment
CHONG HWA ARTS & FRAME MAKERS
34B Lorong Mambong
T: (+65) 6469 0272
A good quality stock of frames to choose from, an excellent finish and really helpful staff who will offer their opinion (only when asked) on what suits and doesn’t suit. This, in spite of its Holland Village location, offers reasonably good value for money, and, perhaps because of it, the assurance that you are in safe hands. (If you want to really reassure yourself that the price is good here, pop next door to the neighbouring framers’ for a price comparison).
Opening Times: 9am-6pm Mon-Sat; 10am-4pm Sun
Holland Road Shopping Centre (#03-02)
211 Holland Avenue
T: (+65)6466 0800
A bit of a self proclaimed framing celebrity (is there really such a thing?!), Angie will tell you what to do and how to do it. Generally brilliantly executed framing but you will pay for it and it’s nothing that Chong Hwa (see entry above) can’t do. Good for usual frames and hard-to-frame artwork/pottery.
Opening Times: 10.30am-8pm Mon-Sat; 10.30am-6pm Sun
Block 4 (#02-115)
T: (+65) 6475 5619
A family run framers, Star is found within the HDB block, just off Farrer Road, and do a very good job, comparable to somewhere considerably more expensive. However, do be sure to check the little things: e.g. that – when finished and framed – the 2 hooks on the reverse (for the wire) don’t show from the front, even a tiny bit….ours did when we tried this place out, but in their defense it was a super skinny frame. Recent visits have produced flawless results. Be fussy from the outset and it won’t be a problem. They have an excellent and varied selection of frames to choose from – not all of which are on display, so do ask. Don’t forget to bargain – no Holland Village fixed prices here. BTW: The smaller the picture, the bigger the frame should be. Counter intuitive but true.
Opening Times: 10am-7pm Mon-Sat. Closed Sun