How to insert photos into a matted photo frame. Our step by step guide.

How to Insert Your Photos Into a Matted Photo Frame - Our Step-by-Step Guide

Are you looking for assistance on how to insert your photos into a matted photo frame? We have created a convenient step-by-step guide.

You can either refer to the handy video link below or continue below to read through our visual step-by-step guide.

How to Insert Photos into a Photo Frame with a Mat Board

Getting Started

Items you'll require:

  1. Your photo frame
  2. Your photograph or artwork
  3. Some gloves (not essential, but will avoid fingerprints on the glass and on your photo)
  4. A lint free cloth (microfiber is good)
  5. Some adhesive tape (we suggest self-adhesive, acid free hinging tape)
  6. A flat head screwdriver (optional)

Tip: before you begin make sure the workspace you are using is clean and clear of clutter to avoid scratching your frame. Some people lay a cloth or towel onto a table surface.

Step 1- Unwrapping the Photo Frame

Unwrap the photo frame (or picture frame) from its protective shrink-film and turn it over and place it face down on your protected working surface or table.

Step 1- Unwrapping the Photo Frame

Step 2 - Remove the Backing Board

Use your fingernails, a butter knife, or flathead screwdriver to lift the flexible flip-tabs from a horizontal position so they now point vertically upwards. This will now allow you to easily remove the backing board from the recess of the photo frame.

Step 2 - Remove the Backing Board of the Photo Frame

Step 3- Remove the face paper and mat board

Carefully remove the face paper and the mat board from inside the photo frame.  Take care that the glass does not fall out of the picture frame. Do not remove the glass from the photo frame.

Step 3- Remove the face paper and mat board from the frame

Step 4 - Mounting the photo to your mat board

Place your photo onto a flat surface. Hold the window mat board over the photo to check the positioning and that the photo will fit properly.

Next, place the photo face down. Then place tabs of acid-free tape along the top edge of the photo, only overlapping 5mm onto the back of the print. This will leave most of the tape exposed, which you can then flip back over, face-up again.

Note: You do not need tape on all sides of the photo. You only need to adhere tape to the top edge, so that your artwork or photo can just hang down.

Next, position the mat board over the photo, align the edges and rest down to adhere the mat board to the tape on the top of the photo.

Push the mat board firmly down over the tape to help it to adhere firmly.

Then flip the mat board over and burnish the tape a bit more to ensure it will adhere.

Diagram for Tab Hinge for attaching artwork to a mat board

Additional tip for larger sized or wider prints, posters and photos: 

When looking to attach a larger or wider print or photo into a larger sized frame, don't apply tape all along the top edge, as this won't allow the print to expand and contract without rippling.

It is safer is to just use method called a T-Hinge, which is evenly spaced, cross-layered tabs of acid-free tape positioned along the top edge of the print only, behind the matboard window. This allows your photo or print to naturally suspend and hang down inside the frame. See example below:

Diagram for T-Hinge for attaching artwork to a matboard

For wider prints you might place a T-Hinge approximately every 20-30cm along the edge. For example, for a wider A2 sized print, you might place three T-Hinges attached across the top. One tab each side and one in the middle. 

it is important to understand that a larger or wider print should be able to move naturally and not be permanently adhered to the backing board. This will allow your print or photo to slightly expand and contract with changes in relative temperature of the room over time and help avoid severe cockling or buckling in the future.

Step 4 - Mount the photo to your mat board

Step 5 - Wipe the glass with a clean lint free cloth

Clean and remove any dust or finger prints from the glass inside the photo frame, if required.

Step 5 - Wipe the glass with a clean lint free cloth

Step 6 - Place your photo into the photo frame

Carefully place the mounted and matted photo into the photo frame face down, with the photo facing the glass.

Remember to change the hang clip on the hard, compressed wooden backing board (MDF board) to match the correct orientation of your photo.

Use your fingers, a butter knife, or flathead screwdriver to close the flexible flip-tabs back to their original horizontal position. This will keep the MDF backing board in place inside the picture frame.

Step 6 - Place your photo into the photo frame

Step 7 - Final Check 

Lay your framed photo onto a flat surface, and check the photo is aligned properly and sits straight. If not, remove the backing board and straighten the photo.

Check that the front of the glass in the photo frame is also clean and wipe off any finger prints or dust.

Step 7 - Final Check

Your photo frame is now ready to hang and display your precious memories and artwork.

Shop Australia's Largest Range of Photo Frames Online with Profile

Explore the complete range of Picture & Photo Frames from Profile Australia. Whether you're looking for poster framestimber framesnatural oak framesmetal frames or even specialty frames like acrylic photo block frames and multi-window photo collage frames, we offer a full range of picture framing solutions in all types of shapes, styles and sizes. 

All proudly made in Australia with eco-sustainable timbers and a lifetime guarantee! 

Shop Pre-Cut Photo Mats and Mat boards Online with Profile

Whether you're looking for full, uncut sheets of matboard, standard single white window mat boards or even double-layered matboards, Profile offers a full range of matboard solutions in all different sizes and colours. 

We hope this information was helpful. If you have any questions or feedback, please feel from to contact us.

Want to read more? You may also like:

Shop the Story