Beveled Edges

Hello Everybody,

I am hoping someone can help me. A prospective client has asked me to create wedding invites on the 4ply Rising Museum board in an oval shape with a beveled edge. I have never done beveling before and am not set up for die cutting (yet…). Is there some tool I can buy to do this?


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G’day Elecia;

I’m no expert on the many possibilities of letterpress die-cutting, but the bevelled edged 4ply museum board thing smacks of picture frame mats and thus I think you are straying into the world of mat cutting which nowadays is somewhat specialized what with the extensive use of circular and oval mats. I have some experience there —- enough to know that without the right piece of equipment you will be taken to whole new levels of frustration. If nobody else chimes in, I’d see a local framer, one who works at the mass production economical end of things if possible. Good luck…….db

Yes, this requires an oval mat cutter. Simple, manual ones are not that expensive, but I can’t speak to how well they would work or how long it would take to cut out the stock. Mr. Brewer’s suggestion may be the best one in the long run.

Michael Hurley
Titivilus Press
Memphis, TN

G’day again;

Something else, if you haven’t printed on that museum board, I’d try a piece as my very limited experience tells me that it will take a kiss print but any kind of impression may cause cracking and/or caving in of the surface…….again,good luck….db

I hesitate to comment, because I don’t do commercial work, but a few thoughts—does the customer have an example he can show you of a similar invitation? That might clarify what it is he wants—he may not really know what he wants, but if he does, he must have gotten the idea somewhere.

Secondly, another approach which might give the intended effect, and which I suspect would be more elegant, would be to combine the printing with an embossing, creating the oval inset effect in that way. You would use a an appropriate paper, instead of the museum board, and the over-all effect would be—to my mind—more attractive.

Thank you much everybody. I had looked into the manual oval mat cutters but unfortunately they use prongs on what is typically thought of as the scrap part (the actual oval).

I guess she saw them in a book at a local invite store and they are through “Vera”.

I will order a sample of the museum board. The thickest I have printed on prior to this is Lettra 220#. Thanks for that tip! !

What about using a sacrificial sheet on top of the mat board to take the pinpricks? Or filing off the pins and putting a thin sheet of non-slip rubber on in their place?

Michael Hurley
Titivilus Press
Memphis, TN

There are shops that will accept your press sheets for cutting this way. We sent a project to these guys recently:

Our client set up the beveling, so I’m not sure what it cost, nor did I see the finished product. However, they were quite pleased with the finished result.

Maybe take a look at how beveling is done at Cranes:

The rectangular piece of steel the fellow is scraping the paper edges with is a cabinet scraper, used in wood working. It has to have a sharp edge (sharp square edges, not sharp like a knife) to do a clean job. These can be hand sharpened on a flat file.

Other Cranes videos on youtube also show edge bordering and engraving. These folks have been doing this work for an awfully long time and set the standard, at least in the U.S.


Dancing Pen,
Last spring I designed my daughter’s wedding invitation as you have described. I found a local wholesale framer carrying Rising Museum Board, ordered the boards and had them beveled by them. They did a very nice job.

I hired and printed them with Reb Peters in Oakland as I did not have a press at that time. I desired a deep impression and it was achieved with NO problems.

image: invite.jpg


image: RebPeterspictureofinvite.jpeg


not to my taste, but a nice job…