diy linen photo mat

Katie came over this weekend to help out on a little project. And by help, I mean show me how. I've been working on the gallery wall in the hallway and wanted some linen mats for a few of my frames. Unfortunately,  I couldn't mind much in the stores. Target had some but I didn't care for the frames they were in and at $20 a piece, it wasn't worth it. And most of the other ones I managed to find were poor quality. I looked for pieces that were smooth and not bubbling/buckling. I also looked at the inside corners for gaps. No such luck. But Kate insisted it could be done perfectly on the cheap.

She brought over the supplies:
Linen [or any other fabric you'd like]
Hot glue gun and sticks
Photo mat

First, iron your fabric to rid it of any wrinkles. Then lay your mat on top of it and cut off the excess. You want about an inch on all sides. This is what we started with: 


Please have your dog supervise at all times. 

Next, you lay a bead of glue down next to the edge and fold over the excess fabric before it dries. Careful because depending on how thin your fabric is it can be easy to burn yourself. But as Katie says, "it's not a real diy until you burn yourself." New blog motto?

When you do the opposite side, make sure to pull it pretty taught. Also, don't go crazy when gluing the corners. As you can see above, we left that a bit undone and you'll see why soon. 

Then you do the two shorter ends. It doesn't matter at which side you start just make sure that you do the corresponding opposite side right after that one. You can see how we did the corners above. I folded it all to one side and glued, then to the next with more glue. After that, we tried to cut an 'X' in the middle with an exacto knife. It didn't go very well so we switched to scissors. Pinch it in the middle to create a hole you can fit your scissors to and go to the corners. Be very exact at this part. You can fold back your pieces and see how the inside corners look as you go. 

Then you bend all of those pieces back and glue them along the edge as well. Be careful not to get too close to the edge or to use too much glue. You don't want it to ooze over to the other side where it will be visible. 

Ta-da! There you have it- a linen photo mat that you don't have to pay an arm and leg for! This is a great project if you have ugly mats lying around or extra fabric. We used Katie's leftover linen from her wedding projects. I don't feel guilty because she did the same with leftover burlap from my wedding ;]

Check out those inside corners! Perfection! I did this on about three frames so it wouldn't be just one oddball in a whole gallery. It would look great paired with a white frame too!

Hope you enjoyed!

Here's the inspiration and the link up!


  1. Hi! I found you through houseupdated.com and I've been reading ever since. The photo mat looks fantastic, totally going to try this! My site is www.deardiy.com if you want to stop by :)

    1. Thank you so much! Yes, I've been to your blog before but I don't remember how I got there :)


Drop me a line! I monitor all comments just to make sure we keep it fun and light :]

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
the diy nurse © 2013.

Design by The Blog Boat