Glossary Of Terms

Ever wonder what the terms used in Custom Framing mean? 


Acid Burn

Yellowish-brown lines that appear on artwork that was not framed using conservation materials. This causes the artwork to discolor and become brittle.

Acid Free

This general term is used to describe paper materials with a 7 pH, or very close to 7 pH. Acid-free materials are more permanent and less likely to damage or discolor over time.


Describes the framing procedure where all materials are completely acid free. See Conservation Framing.

Adhesive Transfer Tape

Used in mounting artwork, backing boards and similar materials where two adhesive surfaces are needed. (Mats to mats, dust cover to frame, etc.)

Beveled Edge

A 45-degree cut at the inside edge of a mat board window. Exposes about 1/16" of the mat board core.

Conservation Framing

Describes the framing procedure where all materials that come in contact with the artwork; mat board, mounting board, etc, are completely acid free. It is designed to minimize the deterioration of the artwork caused by exposure to the environment.

Corrugated Corners

Protects the corners of a frame when in transit. Made from corrugated cardboard, our corners are adjustable to fit two positions, 3/4" and 1 3/8".

Double Mat

Technique where the artwork is matted using two separate mat boards, one on top of the other. The amount of the bottom mat you see is determined by the offset.

Dust Cover

Paper which is placed on the back of wood frames to protect artwork from dust. Usually made from Kraft paper.

Floating Artwork

Matting technique where the mat board does not overlap the artwork. The artwork is adhered directly on the mat board with its edges exposed. It appears to "float" within the frame instead of having the mat board window covering its edges.

Foam Core

Stiff, lightweight material used as a backing (mounting) board to give rigidity to the image. Foam makes up the center of the board with a layer of paper on its surfaces.


This reddish brown patches found on artwork that was not framed using conservation materials. This is caused by a combination of metallic salts, high humidity and high temperatures.

Frame Pair

One frame pair is equal to two frame sections. Two pairs make one frame.


Describes the brackets, metal or plastic that are used to assemble a metal or wood frame.


Procedure where a strip of tape is folded and attached to the artwork and then to the backing board or mat board. NOTE: As a rule you want to use a tape that is weaker than the artwork so that if the artwork is pulled the tape will tear, not the artwork.

Image Size

This is the actual measurement of your picture. Usually this is 1/4" larger than the window size of the mat board.

Linen Liner

An inner frame that is wrapped in a white or natural colored linen material. Most commonly use within a larger frame to offset the frame from the artwork.

Mat Board

A colored paperboard material used to create a transition from the picture to the frame.

Mat Board Offset

The reveal of the bottom mat board when one mat window is stacked on top of another. A standard offset between the top and bottom mat is 1/4".


The reveal of the bottom mat board when one mat window is stacked on top of another. A typical offset between the top and bottom mat is 1/4".


Acrylic material used in place of glass. It is distortion free, light weight and shatter resistant. Standard and UV Plexi-glass are available.


The cross section illustration which displays the Height (H), Width (W), and Rabbet (R) of the frame, giving you a better understanding of its size.


The inner channel of a frame which holds the picture and any framing materials.


Often made from foam core or mat board, it creates an area between the

plexi-glass and the picture. Shadow Box frames can be made using spacers.


The opening in a mat board to view the picture underneath.

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