Travel Photos with Country Silhouette Mats

Need a gift idea for the person who loves to travel? This DIY is perfect. A collection of their travel pictures with coordinating frames and the mats depicting the country each picture was taken in. This is what I gave my sister, Karla, and her husband for Christmas and it was a hit. I simply asked them before hand to send me a grouping of their most loved travel pictures and from there I chose which ones would work for what I was intending.

First, I needed to get some frames together. I like the idea of having them be all different sizes and mismatched, but coordinated. So I went over to Goodwill and picked out five frames with similar widths of frame, but in different styles and shapes.

Travel Photos with Country Silhouette Mat old frames

Next, dismantle every frame and take out all the backing, inserts, mats, filling, glass, etc.

Travel Photos with Country Silhouette Mat frame prep

Paint the all the same color. This is what will bring the collection together. I used a navy acrylic.

Travel Photos with Country Silhouette Mat frame paint

Two coats were enough to get the frames ready.

Travel Photos with Country Silhouette Mat paint frames

Then, to make the paint last, I sealed them with a coat of spray clear acrylic.

Travel Photos with Country Silhouette Mat seal

This also gave them a glossy even finish.

Travel Photos with Country Silhouette Mat frames done

Once I got the pictures, I used PhotoShop to scale and size them accordingly with the respective country (sorry I don’t have an image if this). But using layers, it’s pretty easy to do. Then, I printed them out to scale. To make the country silhouette mat, you’ll need to transfer the country outline to a heavy piece of cardstock. Start by filling in the back of the country outline with a charcoal pencil.

Travel Photos with Country Silhouette Mat trace country

Then, trace the country outline to the cardstock piece.

Travel Photos with Country Silhouette Mat carbon copy

With an Xaco knife, cut the outline carefully.

Travel Photos with Country Silhouette Mat cut silhouette

This should fit perfectly now with the corresponding picture.

Travel Photos with Country Silhouette Mat align with picture

Next, you’ll need to cut the mat and picture to the frame size. The best tool for this is to use the glass for each frame to get exact measurements.

Travel Photos with Country Silhouette Mat align with glass

I also used some stick glue to keep the two pieces from slipping. With a straight edge and Xacto blade, trim the excess paper.

Travel Photos with Country Silhouette Mat trim matt

Fit the mat and picture into the frame and done.

Travel Photos with Country Silhouette Mat how to

Repeat with as many pictures as you want to create a collection. The best part is that it’ll be really easy to keep adding pictures and make a pretty cool travel gallery wall.

Travel Photos with Country Silhouette Mats

Can’t wait to see how their collection grows!

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