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How to Use Scrapbook Paper to Create a Picture “Mat”

Brick fireplace with art

It’s cheapskate mat week on Dans le Townhouse!  Just kidding.  But I have been on a “frame my new souvenir art for as little as possible because vroom vroom” kick.  

When I bought the Ikea frames for the enamel paintings, I also looked for a frame for the quirky print I bought in Budapest.  When Ikea failed to deliver, I headed to Michael’s.  The print
is, unfortunately, not exactly a standard size.  Happily, at Michael’s I found a pretty white
floating frame that fit the bill (and was half off).  But white print + white frame, against our white walls . . . I
worried the print might disappear.  As I meandered my way to the till, I spotted the scrapbook section.  Can we just take a moment to acknowledge the mind-blowing variety of scrapbook paper?  I was seriously overwhelmed, but I found two sheets I liked – a rich teal and a softer turquoise, both with the same embossed polka dot pattern.  I asked Hubby which he liked better (the teal).  I cut each to size and affixed the colour that got Hubby’s vote behind
the print with double sided tape – instant “mat”!  The other colour was placed facing outward
on the reverse.  It’s easy to swap the colours when Hubby’s not looking (and fun to see how long it takes for him to realize), but the back also looks more
finished, which I like.

If you’re curious, the print is by Tascali David.  “Lesz” is a Hungarian word that sounds like “less” and the saying
means, roughly, “it will be how it will be,” a spin on “it is what
it is” – which is an expression Hubby loathes, so this print cracks me up.       

White floating frame; use scrapbook paper for mat

White floating frame; use scrapbook paper for mat

White floating frame; use scrapbook paper for mat
The back is pretty, too! (The teal and turquoise look less similar in real life).

I set the framed print on the mantle along with the little oil painting Mom bought me.  Not sure how long it will loiter there . . . I still need to find the perfect spot.  At least it’s out of my suitcase and in a frame.  That’s progress!

Black fireplace mantle with aqua accessories

Black fireplace mantle with aqua accessories

How to decorate a brick fireplace mantle

I’m definitely hooked on floating frames (for everything from antique postcards to hand painted note cards), and now I’ve added scrapbook paper to the mix.  Coupled with Tuesday’s painted background trick, I’m out of ideas for replacing custom mats.  For now… 

What are your nifty tricks for framing awkward things?



  1. Staci @ My Friend Staci
    January 24, 2013 / 11:39 pm

    Looks good. I too am a cheapskate when it comes to matting. Usually I just flip the insert that came with the frame over (showing the white side) and put the art on it. Yep, my dirty little secret. I think a thick fabric (burlap? velvet?) with a hole in it would make a cool matte to go in front of art.

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      January 25, 2013 / 3:00 am

      Great trick!! I love both your ideas.

  2. Kinga Gimes
    January 25, 2013 / 12:32 pm

    Hi! Can I ask that where is from the big text above your fireplace??

    • Kinga Gimes
      February 11, 2013 / 7:23 pm

      Megnéztem a linket amit megadtál és találtam egy magyar kommentet. Igazából arra voltam kíváncsi, hogy maga a vers honnan van. Amúgy nagyon jól néz ki! 🙂

    • Anonymous
      April 2, 2014 / 11:35 am

      Petöfi, ez a cime is. "Fa leszek" Eneklik is, nepszeru mudal volt valamikor.Anita

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      April 2, 2014 / 2:02 pm

      Köszönöm Anita. A Petöfi neve és a fordítás a linkbe vannak, de azt hiszem, elfelejtettem írni a vers címet.

  3. erica | wicked bride
    January 25, 2013 / 4:46 pm

    I LOVE using scrapbook paper for mats. They make really cute little impromptu envelopes too. Every time I'm at the craft store and see sheets on sale, I buy a bunch.

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