Saturday, August 18, 2012


I've been asked about chip board.  I have to admit I've heard of chip board but I don't think I have ever had any.  I use mat board because it's 1/16 inch thick, if your chip board is 1/16 inch thick and it glues I would go ahead a use it.  Will it sand?  Will it take paint?  If so, use it.  I use what I have around the house for substitution.  I think one of the great things about miniatures is that you use what  you can find, it's all about substitution, if it works for you, use it.
Mat board is what is used to mat pictures with when they are framed, it's found in the framing department of Michael's or at a picture framer's.  It comes in lots and lots of colors.  You can also choose between white and cream for the inside color.  That's for when the mat board is cut at an angle, you can see the inside contrasted with the surface color.


  1. Hi Kris, chipboard is MDF, I think chipboard is the term they use in scrapbooking when using MDF (probably to confuse scrapbookers from realising that they can buy huge sheets at the hardware store for next to nothing). It's more like wood than mat board and it is much tougher than ply (for sanding or etching) and way way tougher than balsa.

    Here in Australia, mat board is hard to find and very very expensive, so I will be attempting a few of your tutorials in chip board but it's effectively going back to wood work.


  2. Chipboard is a paperboard "generally made from reclaimed paper stock".

    In the U.S., chipboard is not the same as MDF. MDF (Medium Density Fibreboard) is an engineered wood product.

    In the U.S., there is another engineered wood product called Particle Board, that is called chipboard in some other countries (per the internet). Particle Board is not as dense or strong as MDF.

  3. Yes, there is two different "chipboards" The MDF in the hardware stores and the chipboard that is paperboard in the scrapbooking section of the craft store. It is basically like a hard cardboard, like the back cover of a paper pad (ie. watercolor paper, canvas paper) Here is a link for to see what this kind of chipboard is like.

    Thank you Kris for you inspiration! I love seeing everything you make.

  4. What hardware stores carry MDF? I can't find it anywhere except on line and then hard to find in 1/8" and less. So heavy that shipping cost makes it prohibitive to order...Sorry to use this as a question forum, Kris...

    1. Lowes and Home Depot both carry MDF (wood) it is usually back near the large lumber. When you go in ask someone in the lumber area. :)

    2. The thinnest MDF I can find at Home Depot and Lowe's is 5/8".

  5. I went to a framer and asked him for his scraps. I have enough matboard to last a lifetime. Of course some pieces are small but for mini furniture the pieces are fine.