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40 in 50: Linen Frames

I had a set of frames that have been sitting around for awhile, but I’d yet to put anything in them because they were just too plain. So I decided to make them a little more exciting by covering the boring white mat that came with them with some fabric, and the results are much better.

I’ll start by warning you that this is not a pretty project to do, but the final product is worth it and you end up covering up all of the ugliness.

Here’s what you need:

| frame with mat | hot glue gun | straight-edge | scissors or rotary cutter |

| scrap of fabric* | sharpie* |

*My scrap of fabric was a linen-like fabric (I’m not actually sure what it’s called, but you can find it at Jo-Anns with the utility fabric, it’s a lot cheaper than linen, but has almost the exact same look), and ironed it first. You can use any fabric you want. A pretty piece of paper will do the trick also.

*The sharpie is optional. If you want to try your lines before you cut them, you can.

– 1 –

The frame I used was a double mat, so I carefully pulled the two layers apart and set the smaller, top half aside until the end.

– 2 –

Trim away any excess so that your fabric is 1/2″ to 1″ bigger than all sides of your mat. We are going to cut diagonally across this piece, as shown. (This is where you could use your sharpie).

– 3 –

I used a straight edge and pressed it firmly onto both the fabric and mat to prevent slipping while I made the cut with my rotary cutter.

– 4 –

Cut 2 lines from corner to corner. You should have something that looks like this:

– 5 –

This is where it starts to get ugly because it become a hot mess of glue and fabric. Begin by placing a line of hot glue along your mat, and then folding the fabric up (make sure you’re holding the fabric tight), and glue in place.

– 6 –

Next, trim away as I’ve shown in the photo, but leave enough to still fold the fabric over.

– 7 –

Bring that flap over and glue that also.

– 8 –

Continue on all 4 sides until you’re left with something like this. You may also want to trim up any extra fabric.

– 9 –

Finally, replace the smaller mat by placing glue on all 4 sides, then sticking it to the ugly side of the mat you’ve just covered.


Simple frames that are much less boring than the white ones I had before.

I printed out | this | and | this | and hung them next to our pantry in the kitchen.

One Comment Post a comment
  1. Amazing! I’ll have to try that for the next art piece I buy!

    March 13, 2012

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