Matting & Mounting

We work hard to make sure all your artwork is preserved and presented in a way that is awesome. Some more stuff here about how awesome we are and then a bit about, ok, let me tell you more about how it’s done. Of course, without giving away trade secrets.


mattingThe function of matting is to protect, to control humidity, and to provide a space between the glass and art. All of our mat boards are acid free and chemically inert. That is not true of all mat products.Older framed pieces should always be examined for paper materials that could be damaging your artwork. French matting, hand wrapped silk, velvet, and textured mats are available as well, to create a unique expression.

Crescent Matboard

Nielsen Bainbridge Matboard


mounting1Mounting is a simple word that sums up one of the most critical points of framing. It is the method with which artwork is secured in a frame, so that it is both firmly held where it is intended to stay, but also held so it is not compromised with time and aging. All mounting comes with two elements that trade off against one another, permanence and conservation. The more securely something is mounted, the more likely that it is somehow altering the artwork that it is holding. Anytime that artwork is altered, there is the risk of it being damaged, or that its potential resale value might be reduced. On the other hand, the more conservation a mounting is, the less secure it will be and the more likely it is to shift or fall given time, temperature and humidity changes, and shock or movement.

While it may require re-mounting or re-evaluation down the road, we at Westcott & Schaff, tend to default to the method of mounting that favors leaving artwork unmodified whenever possible, rather than to risk damaging or reducing the original nature of artwork. You can always increase the amount of permanence that is used to mount art, reducing it can be impossible.

Quality mounting ensures that your framed artwork will remain secure and stable within the frame. Where possible, we only use acid free and chemically inert materials which guarantee proper protection for your artwork. And for the nontraditional art pieces, we can design and build special mounting and framing for tapestries, musical instruments, clothing, and other objects.


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An example of artwork float mounted on a fabric wrapped field to display the natural deckle edge of the paper and surrounded by a hand wrapped linen mat featuring a deep, 8-ply bevel. Above is a sample of a mat that is as unflattering as it is damaging to artwork. Yellow brown discoloration is a sure sign
of materials that are not acid free.
One of the primary functions of the matboard is purely aesthetic. So the first, and possibly most important, step is to select the type of mat and the color that will compliment your artwork. Matting also creates space between the artwork and the glass in your frame, which prevents moisture buildup, mildew, and adhesion of the art materials or papers to the glass.