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HOw the H**k to I get mat corner samples?


CGF, Certified Grumble Framer
Jul 24, 2004
Round Pond, ME
I am frustrated beyond belief! I am opening up a new frame shop in midcoast Maine. Have all the moulding samples I could possibly need and then some. One of my reps (don't want to mention names) promised to get me the Bainbridge line of mat samples. This was over a month ago. Still haven't received them after countless phone calls to that company and Bainbridge. The other line of mat samples, .... same thing. The rep promised I'd get them....... still haven't received them. Called the company, they said they were back ordered but couldn't tell me when I'd receive them. A week and a half later, I call again and they tell me that they were NEVER back ordered and can't understand why I never got them! They promised I'll get them on Monday.......
somehow my response to that is 'yeah, right'. I'm past deadline for opening my shop. Mat samples or not, I'm opening in another week. Anyone else had this similia frustration getting their samples? Any suggestions?
I don't have trouble getting mat samples! :rolleyes:

If it's Bainbridge you want email me and I'll give you the number for the rep in NE. She is usually VERY good. Also, either LJ or Don Mar has gotten me mat corners pretty quickly.
H**K = Honk?
Usually the fastest and easiest way to get your samples is from the supplier you buy/will buy from. It is a bit slower sometimes going direct to the big companies. However, Crescent has always come through for me, and anything I ever asked for I got. We have a great rep in NC. It is also possible that someone in your area may have a 'last years' set you could borrow to get by until yours arrives. But if you are with a mile or two of another frame shop, don't ask them.
In New England, the Nielsen-Bainbridge is M J Petrie.

Try emailing her at mjpetrie@nbframing.com


The last time I tried to order corners from Don Mar, they were out. :(
I would think that any supplier carrying matting would have samples of the mats they carry ON HAND. Mine did! You aren't the first shop to call them and want to set up an account and carry that product. Although it sounds like you might be the last.

Accidents happen and they may have ran out but if they couldn't get them in a few days I would reconsider using them for items way more important than corner samples.

Carry on!
Are you going to be carrying Larson Juhl mouldings? You might ask your rep to overnite the Artique corners to you so that you'll at least have something to get you going till you get Crescent and Bainbridge samples. Recently ordered all new mat samples and they all arrived w/in a few days of my order. Don't understand the holdup.

I only carry 962 mat board corner samples – on the low side for most picture framers.

If we need to replace one or two, most of us will just make a corner sample, but if you’re just starting out or have to replace a whole set, (not including silks and suedes which cost well over $20.00/ sheet), I would have to slice up several thousand dollars worth of material which would not only take me hours to do but would leave me with lots of (admittedly useable) scrap. I would then have to label them (sometimes with a bar code for electronic scanning).

Most corner samples numbering several hundred in a set can usually be purchased for around twenty dollars or so. These days not only are they labeled but already come with bar coding for those of us who use a scanning device.

It’s much more cost and time efficient to purchase the samples.
Even though I am being reminded of just how spoiled we are, what with our readymade just pull out of a box samples, I am going to add this, even tho it sounds like whining now..

I got all my mat corner samples from my local supplier, and they have been out of stock on two sets of BB that I still need. I found my NB rep in Atlanta last week, and she is sending me the sets I wasn't able to get. She also told me to call her in a couple of weeks if I did not receive them. I am patiently waiting, and I like that she said please call if I didn't get them.
I still don't know why my local supplier is "out of stock". They have been for over two months now.. hmm.
Just a thought but here are some suppliers selling mat samples cresent , bainbridge
Other wise whom ever will be selling you your mats should be able to expedite your sample hunt.

Jill Hennes CPF
Omro Gallery
Bill Janet Jerry

gperry needs 962 mat samples before opening the door of a new frame shop?

Wow! I am so lucky that the folks around here are not that discerning. I have managed to get by so far with around 50-60. I don't recall ever loosing a sale though not having the right shade of mat.

I take it then that matting is bought by the sheet just as it is needed, or must it be bought by the packet?

Please forgive me if this seems like a dumb question to you. I'm just trying to get a feeling for the different ways we conduct our business on each side of The Pond.
All this debate sounds strangely familiar to my ears. I can mentally substitute corner mats with corner samples and there we are again, this time with a grain of framer's pain in it.
Of course, the "ideal" solution is to have every supplier supply framers with free samples. But, for a change, I'd like to see a framer's face when a few of his town's best designers and comercial accounts pretended free samples from him, in form of frames, as way of increasing his chances to sell.


The American custom framers are the best spoiled framers in the world

Not only they show thousand mat corners, but most of them have about 2000 corner samples on their walls. The best part is that they get all those smples for little or no money at all. Better come to America for your samples

[ 09-19-2004, 08:18 AM: Message edited by: American Choice ]

Of the 962 mat board corner samples I display, I only carry 443 of them in stock.

If we can sell a style or color of the remaining 519, we are able to order a single sheet of the stuff.

Most of us get price breaks if we order 25 sheets (of any style) at a time, though. Depending on our location and distance from a distributor, most of us get free delivery.

Admittedly, a great number of those mat “flavors” are silly and I don’t sell a lot of them e.g. the “Denims” (too trendy for my taste) or “Moiré” (too … something?). But by purchasing corner sample sets, we know that they are available if our customers lack the taste and a have the means to afford them – especially the silk and the suede mats.

Even if you don’t avail yourself of all the weird mats all the time, it seems comforting to have the choice.

For no other reason than curiosity, I just counted the number of “white” mats in my paper mat and Rag mat separators and I came up with 61 – that’s not including the black core bevels or any of the odd ball ones.

I am curious about your situation, as well. Are you able to buy most of your supplies domestically or do you have to import them?
Remember to go through and toss all of the discontinued samples if, and when you get a set of Bainbridge. That company feels that to be on the "cutting edge" they must constantly introduce new colors and designs.

In order to put the new colors and designs in, they must discontinue old colors that where on the "cutting edge" just a few months ago. A brand new set of samples, sent directly from Bainbridge will have up to ten percent or more of them as discontinued colors.

Unless you have a POS system or have a slow volume of sales, it is a very tough line to stay on top of.

They do have a great line, however I do not have a POS system and our volume is way to high for us to be able to use that line.

We use Crescent, TrueVue, and Artique. All three of those companies offer an excellent choice and they keep their discontinued products under control.


What a nightmare it must be for you when "That" customer comes in and insists on considering all her options before she can even begin to decide...

We have a local distributer who carries a good number of mats, though I think probably a lot less than you do! I have standardised on the 'conservation quality' which is a sub-set within the Daler range (I'm not sure if you get Daler, but they are quite big in the UK). They come in packs of 5 sheets, and I only ever buy unopened packs, though they would sell by the sheet.

61 whites, phew!!! I have about five.
Est-I-Mate, don't be impressed with 61 whites, last year we sorted through our 6 racks of mats, and threw out 129 whites. No Cream, No blushes, no cores, no weirds, just WHITE. And I rember when we had about 16 colors that we mounted to rag board. They had exotic names like "Blue", "Red", "Dark Green".....

gperry, call Frank at Frank's Fabrics 888-332-2749 and give him your credit card number for $600 and he'll send you corner samples of his whole line. You'll never have to worry about selling cardboard mats again. Show em fabric and never look back.
BTW, 520+ fab samples takes up 7' of rake space.
But it looks FABULOUS.


I have been getting the samples from the Crescent rep directly in the last 4 months. Most of their lines were on backorder for samples so it's taken that much time to get them all but they have been sending each line to me as they were available. You should confirm with your rep again but it may be a while before you get them all.

They should at least be able to give you the specifiers with the tiny squares showing you the colors. I may have some extras if you're really desperate. I could drop them in the mail to you.

Good luck with the opening!
I don't understand why some of you are having trouble getting the Crescent corner sample set. I asked my LJ rep for new, larger, clean ones, and he called Crescent. Just rec'd the new ones last wk. Took a total of 10 days from the date of my request.
For me, it was dependent on the line requested. The regular paper ones were the only ones they could send me right away.

Maybe LJ had some in stock? I can't use LJ since I'm homebased but I'm glad you were able to get them so quickly. Or maybe I'm just lower on the totem pole with Crescent as a new business? It wasn't as much of an impact for me since I'm just getting going but it sounds like gperry needs them NOW!
I ordered both Crescent and Bainbridge back in July (we just opened the gallery & frame shop a week ago Saturday). I have just about all of the Crescent but don't have the color separators (they've been on back order for quite some time). My Crescent Rep (Mary Mintz) has been great. She called one of the distributors and asked him to bring a set out when he comes out. I've not had as much luck with Bainbridge :confused: ...that's why those samples (still missing at least half of them) are under a table right now. Mary also sent me a set of TruVue samples (minus the black core). My LJ Rep sent me a set of Artique so, between Crescent, TV, and Artique I'm pretty much set. Give your Crescent rep a call and, if you're carrying LJ corner samples, call your LJ rep for Artique. They can probably send them to you quickly.
Good luck.