View Full Version : Uart, Blick's 3-in-1 display and how to proceed?

06-25-2016, 01:11 PM
Hello, I am hoping some will help me overcome some indecision so I can purchase wisely. I have determined I really would like to continue working on Uart paper. I also like the idea of Blick's 3-in-1 display system (mat, foam back, and Krystal Seal bag) for storage and display should I create something worthy of saving or eventually selling.

I am wondering about the process start to finish. So please tell me if I am going in the right direction!

I don't want to work too small or too large. If I choose Blicks 16x20 display option (mat is 16x20 outer and 10 3/4 x 13 3/4 inner dimensions), then I could cut down a 12x18 sheet of Uart to 11x14 and work edge to edge if I like. The mat would cover 1/4 inch of each side.

Is this too small an allowance and cause curling or other problems I am not aware of? I am undecided if I would use Grafix double tack mounting film to adhere artwork to the foam core, or just T-hinge with tape at the top.

Should I even cut down the sheet at all or leave it a 12x18 and just measure and mark a 11x14 box on the uncut sheet to work inside?

Also, I sometimes like to do a wet underpainting, other times not. Can I go ahead and use the foam core that comes with the Blicks display to mount my paper on before I start to work, or should I just tape the Uart to a regular drawing board to work on and then try to mount the finished piece onto the foam core after? I am afraid that the latter option will be too difficult to do using Graphix film and I will end up smearing the painting. Also, I don't know if the Graphix and foam core will take a wet underpainting if I mount prior to working.

Can anyone help me understand? I don't want to waste supplies by not following what works best.

One final question, for anyone using Blicks 3-in-1 display system, I have always used a spacer in actual framing to separate pastel from the glass. Obviously, this system puts the mat right onto the pastel and the bag not far away. Any problems I need to watch for?

Thanks for your input. I look forward to not feeling so clueless with this process!!

06-25-2016, 04:17 PM
I'd love to hear a response to this as well, because when it comes to framing, I have no idea what I'm doing!

water girl
06-25-2016, 04:30 PM
I'd leave your Uart paper the size it is. I like to leave a 2" border all around, sometimes larger. I double mat, so there is space behind the mat. In other words, the mat against the glass has a smaller opening than the mat behind it, next to my painting. If you buy ready-cut double mats, reverse the usual order. That second mat, with the larger opening, allows dust to fall behind the top mat. Sort of like a spacer. Others have used the bags and can tell you their experience. I hope this helps.

06-25-2016, 04:46 PM
I am not familiar with Blick's 3 in 1 system, but from the look of it on the website pics, it looks like a double mat that you can reverse the usual order and have the inner mat act as a spacer as Karen has mentioned. I would definitely not trim the Uart paper. The closer it is to the outer size off the mat, the easier it is to mat and frame. I would attach it to the backing board after the painting is finished. This will allow some shifting and maneuvering if you need to, to fit the frame opening exactly where you want.


06-25-2016, 05:35 PM
Thank you Don and Karen for your quick replies!
I found this in the Blick description of the mat that comes with the 3-in-1 system: The included acid-free, beveled mat helps customers visualize how the piece might look in their home or office after framing.

So it appears to be a single, beveled mat....no double mat to use as you suggest. I hope others who use this system will chime in as I don't know if inserting a second mat is even necessary in this situation or if it will fit the bag! I guess I could just buy one and experiment, but I am really trying to avoid the hit and miss approach with art supplies. (I just donated lots of stuff that I bought with good intentions but really never used....)

But will definitely keep the second mat in mind as an alternative to using a spacer when framing. :clap:

Sounds like it is best to leave the paper uncut. That was my hunch too.

Thanks so much!
(CaliAnn, thanks for helping me feel not so alone! :wave: )

06-25-2016, 08:15 PM
Here's a link to the Blick page:


You can get either a single or double mat.


06-26-2016, 12:55 AM
Thanks Don! I had looked at only the description. Seems this would work wonderfully!

06-26-2016, 11:37 AM
It seems that the double mat option is still intended to be used in the conventional way.......not small mat behind big mat...... So 11 X 14 artwork would be too small for the 11 X 20 size.

06-26-2016, 03:21 PM
Hmmmm....Now I am really confused! Does no one on WC actually use this system? I have seen lots of posts regarding use of the clear bags, but what are people actually putting on top of and behind the art when it goes into the bag to protect the pastel?

06-26-2016, 04:46 PM
If I am not showing or trying to sell my pastels, then I don't mat them or frame them. Instead, I just mount them onto a piece of foam board (as a backing board) and cover the pastel with a piece of tracing paper (taped down). If I wasn't so cheap, I would cover them with glassine.

The trend around my neck of the woods (although I haven't really checked for the past two or three years) is to frame pastels without a mat. So, I haven't used a mat in a number of years.

I have purchased bags when selling prints at a local fair a number of years ago. I would think purchasing bags, purchasing foam board or perhaps even cheaper backing board, and then covering your pastels with tracing paper would be considerably cheaper. Especially if you ultimately frame them without a mat.

I have never heard of the Blick 3 in 1 display until your post - so it is possible that no one here uses it. Although, that doesn't mean that it isn't a good idea and would work well if you do frame with a mat.


06-27-2016, 08:48 PM
I love those and agree if you can do it without cutting the paper, by all means do. I don't know if they attach the layers on the double mat but I've had success with single mats that size or smaller and a clear bag or shrink wrap over the whole. Great idea, and Blick's system is a great convenience. I'd do it but I bought the shrink wrap instead and archival mat boards so I've been using those instead.

06-28-2016, 12:50 AM
Ok, so I think I will give this a try to see how it works. Thank you for your help.