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Double opening mat redo issues success


SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
I was faced with quite a challenge with a customers previously framed (by someone else!) pieces.

There were two pieces with two mat openings each of newspaper articles (which she doesn't have other copies of!) and the previous frame shop had put this package together - TO LAST FOREVER. Augh.

They had drymounted the article to black mat board. Mounted the black mat board to foam core. They had not trimmed the article before positioning and putting the ATG on all sides of the top mat. So... in attempting - very carefully to remove the top mat so as not to tear the article - it became obvious this was not going to work. That's when I called the customer to see if she had another copy of both of these articles. Not.

We know how little room is around a newspaper article. And these were pretty close to the type/pictures - but I was able with 2 tries each piece (2 openings each) to cut the new mat a tinge smaller than the existing and place over the old mat. But the lifesaver was the fact that the original mat was a gray with black core and the new one was black with black core - so it appears all black and works.

Phew. I was sweating bullets on this one.

My mother was a seamstress and always said she would rather make something new from scratch rather than alter existing pieces. I agree. But it did give me a good feeling having succeeded in accomplishing it.

Would you have done anything differently!??

And should I charge her more for all this extra work?

Thanks, Roz
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Art On Canvas

CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2
I wouldn't charge anything more than your client originally agreed to pay.

You might tell the client what you went through (brag on yourself), and let them know how they wouldn't get your type of framing anywhere else.

I love it when a harrowing job turns out well.

[ 12-17-2003, 11:18 AM: Message edited by: Art On Canvas ]


MGF, Master Grumble Framer
On remat work I've learned to give the customer a price for rematting and advise that it is a preliminary estimate subject to revision once I take the art out of the frame and see how easy it will be to remove the existing mat. I like to state this before I do any disassembly so I can feel comfortable charging for my time if issues surface and the customer decides they will leave things as they are and I end up just cleaning the glass and reassembling the package with a new dustcover.

Usually, the quote doesn't change, but there is no guarantee we will see the sun rise in the morning so I like to have the option to revisit the price if the original framer did something that is going to cost me more time than I anticipated. I've never had a customer balk at this approach.

Your solution sounds sort of like putting a spacer under the mat. This works. I've encountered a few situations that were similar. We opted to scan and reprint the articles, remount and mat. Customers paid for the extra work.


PFG, Picture Framing God
Roz, the only thing I would have done differently is I would have taken it apart in front of the customer just to see what is involved. Too many times mats are stuck down with a vengence. If the customer sees that they have a better understanding of the situation. Plus it gives you a chance to examine the package before setting a price. At least that has always been my experience......

Good job on saving it though. Make sure she knows how awesome you are. :D

[ 12-17-2003, 12:53 PM: Message edited by: Emibub ]

The King

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
Kathy's right about dismantling the piece while the customer is standing there. I do that right at the design table.

Otherwise, you end up calling them to tell them that the broken glass is hot-glued to the frame, which is the only thing holding the frame together, and the mat with the gold bevel is glued to the print, which is spray-mounted to a piece of chipboard.

The down-side of doing this is that you might find something priceless inside the frame package. ;)

The King

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
BTW, the original construction you described was pretty-much how I did these until recently, except that I mounted them on black fomecore and generally avoided applying ATG to the article.

Now I get color copies and hinge them. It looks better, it's easier, it lasts longer and it would be easy to redo, should that ever become necessary.

Bill Henry-

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
Like the others, I like to disassemble the frame with the customer watching for two reasons:

1) If there are any unpleasant surpises, you can immediately describe to the customer what exactly they are and what is needed to correct it, and

b) Once the package is apart, they are less likely to say, "Fugedaboutit!" and abandon the project.
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