Paper and Frame Sizes

A4, Letter, Legal, 9x12, 18x24, 16x20.  These are all commonly referenced paper sizes.  And it can be totally confusing.  But no problem - we're here to help you figure it all out.  

What are all these sizes?

What do they mean?

What about framing my artwork?

We're going to answer these questions and more in the next few minutes.​

Paper sizing, and where it came from

​There have been many different paper sizes throughout the world and throughout history.  The industry just hasn't adopted a universal standard yet.  And that's what causes so much confusion.

​ANSI paper standard

Leave it to America to be different.  In America, Canada, and certain parts of Mexico  we use the ANSI standard.  But in most of the world they follow the ISO standards.

​Adopted in 1995, this standard oddly miss out the highly popular 8.5x14 legal size.

SizeWidth x Height (mm)Width x Height (in)Aspect RatioNearest ISO
A216 x 279 mm8.5 x 11.0 in1:1.2941A4
B279 x 432 mm11.0 x 17.0 in1:1.5455A3
C432 x 559 mm17.0 x 22.0 in1:1.2941A2
D559 x 864 mm22.0 x 34.0 in1:1.5455A1
E864 x 1118 mm34.0 x 44.0 in1:1.2941A0

Architectural Paper Sizes

​This size is mostly used in America and is specific to the architectural industry.

SizeWidth x Height (mm)Width x Height (in)Aspect Ratio
Arch A229 x 305 mm9.0 x 12.0 in4:3
Arch B305 x 457 mm12.0 x 18.0 in3:2
Arch C457 x 610 mm18.0 x 24.0 in4:3
Arch D610 x 914 mm24.0 x 36.0 in3:2
Arch E914 x 1219 mm36.0 x 48.0 in4:3
Arch E1762 x 1067 mm30.0 x 42.0 in7:5

ISO 216 Paper Sizes

​ISO 216 is the common standard that have been adopted by most of the world.  As you work in larger industries, which often work on an international scale, you will more regularly come across these sizes.  If you purchase paper in Europe or other locations that use ISO 216 standards you will likely have to buy paper in these sizes.

SizeWidth x Height (mm)Width x Height (in)
4A01682 x 2378 mm66.2 x 93.6 in
2A01189 x 1682 mm46.8 x 66.2 in
A0841 x 1189 mm33.1 x 46.8 in
A1594 x 841 mm23.4 x 33.1 in
A2420 x 594 mm16.5 x 23.4 in
A3297 x 420 mm11.7 x 16.5 in
A4210 x 297 mm8.3 x 11.7 in
A5148 x 210 mm5.8 x 8.3 in
A6105 x 148 mm4.1 x 5.8 in
A774 x 105 mm2.9 x 4.1 in
A852 x 74 mm2.0 x 2.9 in
A937 x 52 mm1.5 x 2.0 in
A1026 x 37 mm1.0 x 1.5 in

Standard Frame Sizes

There are no specific standard frame sizes set by a governing board.  But the framing industry has adopted 3 basic ways of organizing frames:

Common frame Sizes include​

If you want to frame your art and keep your costs as low as possible, make sure to create your art, including matting and mounting, to fit these size frames.​

  1. 4x6
  2. 5x7
  3. 8x10
  4. ​11x14
  5. 16x20
  6. 18x24
  7. 24x36

Uncommon frame sizes include... 

​Basically, uncommon frame sizes are any standard paper size that is not listed above.

  1. ​9x12
  2. 11x17 (a regular size for concert posters)
  3. 13x19 (aka B+ or A3+)
  4. 16x24

Custom Frame Sizes

Custom frames come in every size.... because they are custom.  Custom frames give you the most versatility with frame size, matting, frame color, and mounting options.  As long as you have a good designer, custom framing will almost always give you a much better piece of framed art. ​