Inexpensive DIY Framing | i should be mopping the floor
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Inexpensive DIY Framing

Just to be clear...this isn't DIY in the sense that I constructed my own frames and cut my own mattes (although I did actually do that in college...and grew to despise the matte-cutting machine). It's still a store-bought frame, just a jazzed up matte to bulk up the photo.

I love the look of a custom-framed piece. While I may cough up the dough for it for certain things (a mantel photo and college diplomas are the only I've justified thus far), I truly won't spend the hundreds on other pieces.

But, I've found myself in the middle of a quandary. I'm trying to put together a gallery wall with only a few select colors (trying being the operative word...not completely sure I can pull this off). To get the uniform color I'm looking for, I took matters into my own hands. (My hope is to have both black, aqua and silver frames along with aqua, white and black mattes.)

I did get the frames half off at the HobLob (making them only $10 each)
(Seriously, when are frames not half-off at HobLob? Anyone else see a pricing conspiracy here? I won't argue, though...still my favorite store). The mattes weren't more than $2 each.

I found a great aqua colored acrylic paint. I can use it not only on these mattes, but also on some of the frames...that way I know it's the exact same color all around.

Mattes are super easy to paint...they soak the color up nicely. At first, I tried to keep the bevel white. However, one unsteady shake of my hand proved that pointless. Which is fine...I like the bevel in aqua, too. And I know the paint isn't that far off from the original matte color...I'm just weird.

 Like my painting surface? It's a poster...that I later found out shouldn't have been used for this. Whoops.

I let the matte dry for 24 hours before assembling. 
I used a 5x7 photo in an 8x10 frame with the 5x7 matte to bulk it up. 
Can't wait to see a bunch of these on the wall!
Thrilled to have a gallery wall of my own soon! ;)

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  1. Great idea, Kristi! I've been using my Silhouette Cameo to cut out a perfectly sized mat but it doesn't have the same thickness and presence as a real mat.

    - Claire

  2. Hi Kristi, I frequently stop by your site but haven't joined the follower list before...until today- I couldn't resist joining to give you 500 followers! Woo-hoo for you!! I am new to blogging and each new follower makes my day, hope it is still exciting and fun at 500. Congrats!

    1. Holly, I am so thankful and honored to have reached this little milestone. Thank you so much for "getting me there". I was kind of blown away when I logged on this morning and realized it happened. Best wishes to you on your site as well. It's such a fun adventure. Heading to your site to make sure I'm following over there, too!!


  3. The inexpensive diy framing shown here is excellent. Have a look at it