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Why does custom framing cost so much?

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  • Jun 6th, 2009 5:06 pm
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[OP]
Newbie
Nov 19, 2007
66 posts
12 upvotes

Why does custom framing cost so much?

I'm trying to frame six 4x6 photos in a picture frame horizontally. Seriously, how hard is it to make cuts in a mat?

Does anyone know of a cheap place in the GTA to frame photos?

Or can someone enlighten me on why it costs so much to custom frame?
11 replies
Deal Addict
Dec 9, 2003
4923 posts
763 upvotes
Calgary
Why don't you do it yourself?

Oh, because you don't have the skill. And you don't have the required equipment. And you don't have a retail store on which you pay rent. And you don't have to pay taxes and hire employees and buy coffee for them......

:rolleyes:
Deal Guru
Dec 11, 2008
10061 posts
1513 upvotes
what kind of mats are you looking for? there should be TONS of places that would sell what you need, you probably don't need a custom frame unless you want a very specific frame style
Deal Addict
Jan 21, 2008
1667 posts
383 upvotes
Oakville
Actually mat board can be quite costly, especially if you layer them, you can buy them uncut at Michaels I believe. You can also buy a metal ruler, self healing cutting mat and a 45 degree exacto to use with it to cut your own mat board.

What gets more costly is the custom cutting of the frame and glass.

I'm sure all of which you can source and cut yourself, all depends on how much you value your time and photo.
Deal Expert
Oct 6, 2005
16576 posts
2296 upvotes
Wait for the Michael's 50% off custom framing coupons, or check out some smaller framing shops (i.e. not in malls but in industrial plazas).

You can also buy a standard frame and just get some custom mattes cut?
Member
Jul 31, 2005
382 posts
51 upvotes
Try Costco, I think that they frame paintings ... I used to get mine done @ Sams club and they were by far the cheapest ... they would send it to montreal to get framed, it took about 2 week, maybe wal-mart uses the same company, try asking wal-mart photo labs
Deal Expert
User avatar
Feb 24, 2003
16956 posts
3177 upvotes
Toronto
If these photos have a high sentimental or dollar value, you would definitely want everything to be acid-free and this will definitely raise the price. It's not that easy to cut out openings that are exactly the same size and evenly spaced. The more openings, the more difficult. Multiple mats have added complexity too. Even the colour of the mat's inner core will affect the price.
Member
Jan 31, 2007
249 posts
13 upvotes
don't do michael's they are ridiculous even with the 50% off
[OP]
Newbie
Nov 19, 2007
66 posts
12 upvotes
Cough wrote: Why don't you do it yourself?

Oh, because you don't have the skill. And you don't have the required equipment. And you don't have a retail store on which you pay rent. And you don't have to pay taxes and hire employees and buy coffee for them......

:rolleyes:
Cough - Perhaps I should seek your advice and answers to all my questions, as they are so insightful and elaborately presented.
[OP]
Newbie
Nov 19, 2007
66 posts
12 upvotes
jumbojones wrote: Actually mat board can be quite costly, especially if you layer them, you can buy them uncut at Michaels I believe. You can also buy a metal ruler, self healing cutting mat and a 45 degree exacto to use with it to cut your own mat board.

What gets more costly is the custom cutting of the frame and glass.

I'm sure all of which you can source and cut yourself, all depends on how much you value your time and photo.
JumboJones - do you know, where I could purchase that 45 degree tool? The photos are not that important, so I think I'm going to take your advice, try making the cuts myself and fit that mat into cheaper standard sized frame. Quotes I have been getting from framing stores for a basic frame and single mat have ranged from $160 to $220.
Member
User avatar
Nov 10, 2002
345 posts
54 upvotes
Mississauga
dunhilldarts wrote: JumboJones - do you know, where I could purchase that 45 degree tool? The photos are not that important, so I think I'm going to take your advice, try making the cuts myself and fit that mat into cheaper standard sized frame. Quotes I have been getting from framing stores for a basic frame and single mat have ranged from $160 to $220.
I've been looking into this too, as I've had alot of things I want framed, but it costs so much to do.

From looking around, costco does seem to be the cheapest place to go, if you don't want to do it yourself.

To buy a 45 degree tool. Michaels has that too.. and often they have the 40% off one item. I was use that coupon to buy the tool... I've been thinking about doing it for years, but I haven't pulled the trigger. If you do get it, let us know how you found doing it yourself. There were a few variety's last time I looked, with different ranges of prices.

I'm not sure how much Mat board is either? I think you can also get it at Michaels, but I'll looking for cheaper options, cause Michael's regular prices are ridiculous.
Deal Expert
Oct 6, 2005
16576 posts
2296 upvotes
Do you own framing... it'll save you quite a bit. However cutting matte boards is a bit of a pain - Michael's will cut the matte boards for a minimal charge.

You can check some smaller framing shops out, their prices are usually lower than Michaels.

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