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Matting Your Print

When looking to mat your print, there are two options you can consider. You can buy a standard or a custom mat. Custom mats can easily be made at art stores like Michaels, where they have a range of sizes and can cut the dimensions base on your liking. For those that would like to use the standard mats off the shelf, I size my prints to accommodate their dimensions too.

Standard mats will give you two different dimensions. One for the frame size and one for the image size. For example, let’s say I buy a mat that has an 8in x 10in image size and a 11in x 14in frame size. This simply means your mat opening is 8in x 10in, and the outer border is 11in x 14in.

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Undersized Opening

Most standard mats though undersize their dimensions a 1/2in for the opening. For example, a 8in x 10in mat opening is actually 7.5in x 9.5in. If you order from ArtToFrames however, they undersize a 1/4in. In that case, the mat opening would be 7.75in x 9.75in (so just be aware of that).

 

The purpose of this is for the mat to overlap the image to create a borderless look and make it easier to center the mat on the image.

 

However, I personally like my prints to have a little margin, so I undersize the image to compensate for the 1/2in mat undersize. I leave about a minimum of a 3/8in margin. 

Assembling the Mat

Once you have chosen the mat that works for you, one simple way to mat your print is to place a piece of acid free tape behind the top of your print, and lay the mat gently centered over top of it. Taping only the top will allow the print to expand and contract due to humidity. 

 

From here you can either frame your print, or you could tape a foam board to the back. This video shows a very professional way of doing that here. Then place the mat in the frame and you’re ready to hang your new print! 

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