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Another consideration in the matting process is making a decision between working with standard or custom sizes. There are whole series of standard sizes for mattes, frames, and glass that you probably know a few, the by 5x7, the 8x10. I imagine you have some easel back frames somewhere in the home with some photographs of those sizes. There's a whole array of standard sizes running from 5x7 all the way up to 32x40 inches. You might consider when making your photographs working towards standard sizes because they can help you with budgetary concerns.
There is a vast array of ready-made frames, precut glass, precut mattes that work towards the standard sizes. Something you need to keep in mind though, most of the standard sizes were based on dimensions of old sheet film cameras. 5x7 cameras, 8x10 cameras, those were common sizes and lot of these standard size frames relate to that rather than the size of the chip in your digital camera. Sensor size proportionately does not match many of the standard sizes well.
So, if you're making portraits with the intent of framing them, if you have a landscape photograph that you want to frame in a standard sized mat, you need to contemplate that when you're making the image or when you're doing a postproduction and cropping the image in order to make that photograph match a standard sized mat and frame. If you do go to custom size, as opposed to standard size, as far as cost frame shops typically calculate the cost of a frame and mat, based on the next highest standard size.
So, to a certain degree, you pay a little bit extra for custom and then you are paying a little more than you might if you'd match to the standard size.
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