Choosing Mounted vs. Matted Prints

photo of white roses in black photo frame

laura gardiner - tribeca printworks studio managerUpdated: 04/22/2024
by Laura Gardiner
Studio Manager, Tribeca Printworks

If you are looking for a way to print and display artwork or a photo, you might hear or see references to mounted or matted prints and wonder what these terms mean. At its most basic, a print is a piece of paper with your image. You display it as you want. Different printing options allow you to personalize artwork or photos to fit a particular space or design aesthetic. These printing and mounting options can also make prints look more elegant and professional.

What Are Mounted Prints?

Mounted prints have the same look as other printed photos but include a rigid backing. This backing protects the image from warping and damaged corners. You can display these mounted images or store them with confidence that they will stay as new as the day you first saw them. Mounted prints may use several materials for backing, including foam and matboard.

When you purchase a mounted print, you have several display options:

  • Display images individually or in groups: Since these images have a rigid backing, you can set them on an easel, bookshelf or another area, and they won’t warp.
  • Store keepsakes: If you have images you want to put away but still want to take them out of boxes and look at them without dinging the corners, mounted prints may be a good option.
  • Put images in frames: While a solid backing allows you to display mounted prints without frames, you can add one to match other house or corporate decor.
corner of acrylic facemount frame

What Are Matted Prints?

Matted prints are photos with a mat around them. This mat is usually a thick matboard that sits in front of the picture, creating a visual space around it. Mats often have a beveled edge to avoid casting shadows on an image. You can buy photo mats separate from a photo and place pictures behind the mat. If you order professional matted prints, your prints will come encased in the mat for a cleaner visual look.

Like mounted prints, this printing method provides additional stability. It also protects an image from direct contact with a glass frame, limiting the chances of damage. This photo mounting option works well for:

  • Displaying images individually in a frame: The matted border creates a clean visual space around a picture, adding to its visual presentation.
  • Storing images: Matboard creates a protective shell, so images stay safer when placed in archival boxes.
framed photos of a dog and a desert tree

Types of Matted Prints We Offer

If you want to order a matted print for an image or art piece, Tribeca Printworks offers several options to customize your print. All matting options are available in every frame.

2″ Mat and Frame

This printing and framing option involves adding 2 inches of 4-ply acid-free archival rag matting to an image’s border. The mat will add to your original image size, so if you order an 8-inch by 10-inch image, your matted print will be 10 inches by 12 inches.

3″ Mat and Frame

If you want a larger image border, choose a 3-inch mat using 4-ply acid-free archival rag matting. Like the 2-inch matting option, this will add to your original image size. If you order an 8-inch by 10-inch print, your final product will be 14 inches by 16 inches.

8-Ply Mat and Frame

If you prefer a deeper, more elegant framing option, you can choose 8-ply acid-free archival rag matting. The double thickness of the matting provides a sophisticated art gallery or museum look. Choose from 2- or 3-inch diameter matting. Like the other matting options, this will add to your original image size.

What to Choose for Your Artwork

If you are deciding on a print and display option for your artwork, your choice may depend on your preference. Mounting has the primary advantage of making images more durable. This option works well if you desire to hang a picture without a frame or store photos without damaging them.

Matting adds visual appeal to a print by creating a clean border with additional visual space. You can also choose from many matting options to further personalize the look. If you prefer a dramatic gallery look, you can choose deeper matting like an 8-ply option. For a more subtle look that still makes the art stand out, select a 2-inch, 4-ply matting option.

Choose Tribeca Printworks for Your Custom Framing Needs

If you’re looking for custom framing and matting for an image or art piece, turn to Tribeca Printworks for museum-quality work and a personalized studio experience online. With a free consultation, our art experts and enthusiasts can guide you through the framing and printing process to create a final product that fits your vision. Visit our SoHo showroom, or reach out over the phone or email for a personal advising session. You can also browse our framing and matting options online to learn more about each.

Whether you desire to print and frame a photo for your bedroom or create a professional art print to sell to a client, Tribeca Printworks has the necessary expertise to make your vision a reality. Upload an image to get started today.