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How To: Create A Frame That Includes A Mat

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When selling art to customers you may find that that want their print matted but they want to also add a frame to that mat. Previously Art Storefronts would recommend creating the frame and the mat separately, but after a review of the process and the time input required we have decided that the best course of action is to create a frame that already includes a mat.

 

In this article, we’ll give you a step by step walkthrough to show you how to do this. Print Studios, Galleries and Self-Fulfilling artists can use this article to create frames that include mats. If you find that you’d rather create a frame without a mat, please see our article How To: Create A Custom Frame.

 

  1. Measure the border of your frame as well as the width of your mat and combine the measurement of the two. This should be in the units your site is using. For our example, we'll be using inches.

    1.png

  2. Take a direct frontal photograph of your frame.


    2.png

  3. Calculate the pixel width of one side of your frame and mat.

      • You can use the following formula to find the pixel width of one side of our frame: PIXEL WIDTH OF ONE SIDE = (FRAME WIDTH (INCLUDING MAT) IN INCHES * 72PPI) / 4

      • As an example, our frame is 2 inches wide and the mat is also 2 inches. This equals for inches. This means our formula looks like this: (4 * 72) / 4 = 72px.



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  4. In PhotoShop, click on File.


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  5. Click on the option labeled Open.


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  6. Find your frame with the mat and click on it.


    6.png

  7. Click on Open.


    7.png

  8. Right click on your Layer and select Convert to Smart Object.


    8.png

  9. We will now enable a Rule of Sixths Grid - Click on Edit.


    9.png


  10.  Click on Preferences > Guides, Grids & Slices.


    10.png


  11. In the Gridline Every field enter in 100 Percent.


    11.png

  12.  In the Subdivisions field enter in 6.


    12.png

  13. Click Ok.


    13.png


  14.  Your image should look something like this:

    Please Note: If your grid does not immediately appear, press CTRL ' on your keyboard and the grid should appear.




    14.png

  15. Now that our frame image is open, we need to adjust the size of the frame and mat file. Click on Image.


    15.png

  16. Click on Canvas Size.


    16.png

  17. We need to enter in the pixel width and height for the frame in the Width and Height box. We have the width of one side of the frame, so we need to find the full width and height of the frame.

      • The formula to find the file size you need is FRAME FILE WIDTH & HEIGHT = PIXEL WIDTH OF ONE SIDE (calculated in the previous step) x 3.

      • As an example, because the frame we are going to use is 72px, we can plug that in to the equation: 72px x 3 = 216px. This means that our file size needs to be 216px by 216px.

        Please Note: The width and the height ABSOLUTELY MUST BE THE SAME. If the file is not a perfect square, it will not work properly.


    17.png

  18. Once you've entered the width and height, click OK.


    18.png

  19. You may get a pop-up warning you that the new canvas size is smaller than the current canvas size and that some clipping will occur.  If you get the pop-up, go ahead and click Proceed.


    18.1.png

  20. Right click on your Layer again and select the option labeled Rasterize Layer.


    19.png

  21. Select your Layer by left clicking on it.


    20.png

  22. Click on the Move Tool.


    21.png

  23. Move the frame so that you see the bottom right hand corner. Make sure you are aligning the interior edge of the frame with the grid lines in red.


    22.png


  24. Click on the Marquee Tool.


    23.png

  25. Delete the Upper Right, Lower Left and Upper Left outlined below from your image.


    24.png

  26. Click on the Crop tool.


    25.png

  27. Press Enter TWICE to crop the image to the dimensions of the canvas. Your image should looks something like this:


    26a.png

     
  28. Select your Layer.


    26.png

  29. Hold down CTRL and press J. This will copy your layer.

    28.png

  30. Select the new Layer.


    28.png

  31. Hold down CTRL and press T in order to transform the layer.  You will notice a bounding box around your new layer.


    31.png

  32. Right click and select Rotate 90 Degrees Clockwise.


    32.png

  33. Select the Move Tool.


    33.png

  34. Move your newest layer to the lower left-hand corner.


    34.png

  35. Repeat steps 29-30 and fill in the remaining corners using Rotate 180 Degrees for the Upper Left Corner and Rotate 90 Degrees Counter Clockwise for the Upper Right Corner.


    35.png

  36. Next we're going to get rid of the texture of the frame. If you'd like to keep the texture, you may skip the next steps. Select all of your Layers by clicking on the top most layer, holding down shift and then clicking on your bottom most layer.


    36.png

  37. Right click and select Merge Layers.



    37.png

  38. Click the Marquee Tool.


    38.png

  39. Select a very small sliver of the frame in the area you want to smooth out the texture.


    39.png

  40. Press down CTRL and T to transform your selection and begin stretching the selection to smooth the frame.  Be sure to press Enter to finalize the Transformation once you are done stretching your selection.


    40.png

  41. Repeat this process for any area you want to smooth out.


    41.png

  42. Once you are satisfied with your changes, click on File.


    42.png

  43. Select Save As and save your frame as a JPG or PNG. It will then be ready for upload to your website. For more information on uploading your frames, please review How To: Upload Custom Frames To Your Art Storefronts Website.


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