How to DIY: Photo Mat's Using Mat Boards

by Sierra Taylor

How to create a photo mat by "hand" (without a mat cutter).


  • Paper trimmer
  • Exacto knife
  • Mat board
  • Image to frame
  • Pencil
  • Ruler
  • Instructions

    Step 1

    Gather the supplies.

    Step 2

    First you need the mat board and image you will be framing. You're going to start by measuring your image and mat board for cutting.

    Step 3

    Google YouTube for "how to measure mat board" if you need help measuring.

    Step 4

    My board was 11x14, my image is much smaller so I cut the board in half. Using a ruler I marked 7 inches along the board

    Step 5

    I used a ruler to connect the dots to ensure I had a straight line for cutting. *make sure you are marking the backside of the board

    Step 6

    Now it's ready to cut

    Step 7

    The straight line all the way down the board made it easier for me to align on my cutting board.

    Step 8

    My paper cutter didn't cut all the way through my board. To compensate, I bent the board where it was perforated and on the opposite side drew a line in the groove

    Step 9

    Step 10

    Draw a line on the groove to help you align the board on the cutter to get a clean cut

    Step 11

    When cutting make sure to run the blade across a couple times.

    Step 12

    Step 13

    Now it's time to mark the measurements where I will be cutting on the back of the mat

    Step 14

    Step 15

    I'm bad at measuring, I had a few lines, so to make sure I cut the right lines I shaded in the area to void

    Step 16

    Place your picture on the mat to ensure the measuring is to your satisfaction.

    Step 17

    Next we are going to flip the image over and make the same measurement marking on the front. This is because my mat cutter doesn't cut all the way through.

    Step 18

    Make sure to make light markings so you can erase them when it's completed

    Step 19

    When you're ready to cut, start the cutting process on the back making sure to start and stop where the corners meet.

    Step 20

    Flip the board over and do the same on the "face" side of the mat. When completed, the cut part of the board should pop out.

    Step 21

    If you have strands of paper fibers, you can pull them off or use an exacto knife to run the blade across the edges

    Step 22

    I use double sided tape on the back of the mat to attach the image.

    Step 23

    Lastly, lay your image down, take your mat and align where you want the image to be placed. When you have the view, press the mat board down on the image

    Step 24

    Press down on the sides to make sure the mat board is secure :)

    Step 25

    Step 26