One thing from The Picture Palace

I’m buying one thing from every shop on the Crystal Palace Triangle. This is thing eleven.

It’s been a few weeks since thing 10, from The Bookseller Crow. So here’s the 11th post in my increasingly regrettable commitment to buying one thing from every shop on the Crystal Palace triangle and writing about them all here

The shop

This time it’s The Picture Palace, a long-standing bespoke picture framers opposite Sainsbury’s and The Phoenix Community Centre. 

It’s lived in Crystal Palace much longer than I have and gives off an elder statesman vibe. 

They have a website in need of some repair with limited info, but this great 2015 article from local photographer James Balston confirms it’s one of the oldest businesses on the Triangle, operating for around 45 years! Who needs one of those new-fangled website things anyway?

The owners

I was welcomed by two friendly veterans of their craft, but didn’t ask their names. From James’s post I assume them to be founder and owner Glyn Peacock, and trusty assistant Mark Bresswick who joined on work experience 41 years ago, and stayed for good.

They’re old school gents – calling me sir, giving great customer service, making an affable comment about the woman in one of the posters I brought in, and lighting up a fag indoors. All with charm and no harm done (to quote Julian in Ghosts).

The many things

I’ve bought stuff here before. A bunch of readymade small frames for my office and the gallery wall in our living room. And this poster it’s obligatory to own if you live here:

An old postcard that reads: Upper Norwood and Crystal Palace: Exceptionally helthy because of the prevailing wind from the coast. 380 feet above thames therefore out of the valley fogs. The fresh air suburb.

Here are some snaps from my recent visit: 

The one thing

I came in to frame a couple of posters of my wife’s work – Lockwood & Co. (The Netflix series adapted from Jonathan Stroud’s books) and an eastern European production of her stage play, The Sweet Science of Bruising.

Glyn advised me well on what kind of frames would work best. It would be £252 all in  – which is more than I would have guessed it would be, but also seems totally fair for the skill, labour and materials for these large posters. And turned around within a fortnight, too.

Here’s how they turned out – pretty damn great!

Two large posters leaning against the wall, in black wooden frames. Left: Knockout - a womain in Victorian dress is boxing an old punching bag. Right - a stylised drawing of the main characters from Lockwood & Co, fighting ghosts.

I’ll get around to hanging them, eventually.

It’s good to have finally used this place for its main specialism, and I wouldn’t hesitate to go back when next in need. I wonder what’ll become of it when these two stalwarts of the trade retire…

The Picture Palace is at Paxton Mews, 65 Westow St, London SE19 3RW and (sort of) online here.

Get an occasional email reminding you this blog exists:

Leave a Reply