Thursday, March 20, 2014

Matting Artwork

Happy first day of Spring!  This painting was a souvenir from a trip to Punta Cana, Dominican Republic.  It reminds me of warmth and sunshine.  Just what we need for the first day of SPRING!  I brought it back upstairs today (it winters in the basement during the off season).

Have you ever paid to have a photo or artwork custom matted and framed?  It is unbelievably expensive!  Two years ago my husband surprised me with two Renoir Etchings!  They are absolutely beautiful.  He said he spent more on the framing and matting than on the authentic Etchings!  I personally have not paid to have anything framed and matted, I have always done it myself.  It may not be as fancy and I don't have the equipment to bevel the edge of the matting, but I am okay with that!  My wallet is more full because I do it myself.

Today I am working on a quick and inexpensive project to restore these two framed watercolor/pen & ink prints from the thrift store:

One of the prints had water damage in the corner and they were wrinkled and washed out and a little faded looking, but I knew I could spruce them up.

  1. I disassembled the frames & washed the filthy glass really well on both sides so the art can be seen.
  2. Then I ironed the prints.  Yes, I literally ironed the paper between sheets of paper towel so I didn't burn them.  It worked well to flatten them.
  3. Finally I cut a double mat which covers up the water stain in the corner & brings out the colors in the art.
To cut mat board I use a metal ruler, exacto blade and a cutting mat. Starting with a rectangle the exact size as the artwork I decide on the width of the mat I would like.  This is a valuable skill I am thankful I learned in college. Matting artwork and all things rubber cement - Haha!  

Using a pencil I mark off a rectangle.  In this case, the tan mat board was cut to 1" wide and the red to 1-1/4" wide to reveal a 1/4" detail.

The tan looks nice around the artwork, but I think adding a color detail makes the pictures pop!

Someday I plan to visit Venice, Italy, but until then I can dream about it as I enjoy these beauties on my bedroom wall.  This entire project cost less than $12.00.  The framed art cost $5.99 each and I already had the mat board in my stash.  I'll update this post when when I hang them.  I am still debating between two spots - on red walls or cream color?  Either way they will go in our master bedroom.

Do you have photos or artwork that you would like framed/matted?  I would be happy to help!  

Although the first day of Spring didn't get warmer than 30* in Michigan and the snow flurries were still flying, it didn't stop us from enjoying free ice cream cones at Dairy Queen!

 Cheers to much warmer days ahead!


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