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Shadow Box Mat

The spacer mat is basically a double mat with spacer material hidden between the two boards (or under the boards.)

The shadow created by the spacer is an attractive design feature. The depth of a spacer mat makes it perfect for objects, or art that has dimension—because it allows space between the artwork and the glazing in a frame.

Make sure the moulding being used can accommodate the material.

The spacer may be placed beneath the mats (as shown in the picture at right) or between the mats (as described in the instructions below.)

1. Trim two pieces of matboard to 11” x 14”—one piece for the top mat, the other for the liner mat. The boards may be two different colors, or use just one color—spacer mats can look great in one color.

2. Cut a 2.” border on all four sides of the top mat.

3. Cut a 3” border on all four sides of the liner mat.

4. Cut strips of matboard or foam center board for the spacer: cut two strips 2” x 14”, and two strips 2” x 7”. If using foam center board, one layer will probably be enough. If using matboard, cut another set of strips—or two more sets, to create more depth.