There are countless ways to add borders to photos. From online tools to mobile apps to desktop programs, there’s something for everyone.
You can choose something as simple as surrounding your image with a solid white border, you can create a diptych or collage with multiple photos, or you can get creative with your frames by adding color, patterns, stickers and more.
These apps and sites can be used to improve your photo style, especially if you plan to share your images online using photo sharing apps like Instagram. Here are some easy ways to add a border to a photo.
Web apps that add borders to photos
If you don’t want to install software on your computer or smartphone, there are several solid free photo frames and borders available through these sites. If desired, you can upgrade to a paid account to access more features and designs.
Canva is your one-stop shop for online design, but there’s no reason you couldn’t use it for something as simple as adding a border or frame to your photo. To use the service, you need to sign up for a free account. When you’re done, you can create through the website or using the Canva app.
After starting a new design, select elements > frames start. With Canva, you have to choose your frame before adding your image.
The frames on offer include borderless collages (perfect for Instagram), frames that make liberal use of color blocking, split images, Polaroid frames, and more.
There are plenty of free frames to choose from, but Canva also offers additional paid frames or frames that are only available to premium users. With some frames (like the Polaroid frame), you might want to download it as a PNG with a transparent background to get the full effect, but you’ll need a paid account for that.
BeFunky’s photo editor includes a way to add frames to your photos and you don’t need to sign up to use it. There is a small selection of free frames (one per category), but upgrading to a paid account gives you a lot more options.
When you load BeFunky for the first time, select Photo editor. You can then upload your image and click . click frames from the left menu. BeFunky has a selection of frames including art deco, rustic and lace. Plus, it is straight away category provides you an easy way to create a digital Polaroid design.
Pizap can be used to add frames to photos and create collages. You can test the feature before signing up, but you’ll need to create a free account to save your images.
To add a border to your image, click the Edit photo button on the home page. The limits option has more than 13 categories, most of which are themed for special occasions like Christmas, Halloween and birthdays. Each of the categories has free options for you to use, along with designs reserved for premium users.
The designs available through Pizap are a bit louder and more colorful than other options on this list, and are certainly as kitschy as they come. At the same time, Pizap is the best choice if you’re looking for an easy, online method to add a white border to your photo.
If you want an easy way to add a simple border to your photo, look no further than LunaPic.
First, upload your photo from your computer or a service like Google Drive. Then choose the style of your border. You can choose a tiled background (for which you can upload a separate image) or a color border (enter the hexadecimal code or choose from the color picker).
From here, adjust the thickness of the border, select the sides you want the border on, and whether you want to apply a 3D effect. When you’re done, click Apply and save the photo.
Mobile apps that add borders to photos
If you add frames to photos taken with your phone and want to share them on mobile-friendly platforms, then you’ll need to add frames to them using one of these mobile apps.
There are plenty of border and frame apps available on the App Store and Google Play Store for different tastes. These are just a few that we’ve found offer unique designs or decent free options.
5. InFrame (Android and iOS)
InFrame is a simple app with several options for adjusting images, but the main focus is on providing funky and varied frames.
When you open the app, you will see a grid gallery of all the images on your phone. Tap All pictures at the bottom to go to a specific gallery if necessary. When you find the image you want to add a border to, tap it. You can select up to nine photos if you want to arrange them in a collage.
Once you’ve chosen an image, you can scroll through the different frame options at the top. When you select one, you can further edit the image, such as changing the colors on the frame or adding effects and stickers.
When you’re done editing, tap Done in the top right corner and the image will be saved to your gallery so you can share it directly to other apps.
6. Apr (Android and iOS)
April is a quirky little app with two annoying factors to keep in mind if you’re an Android user: it will constantly ask to use your location data, which is totally unnecessary, and if you don’t grant it access, it will ask you. every time you open the app.
The app can also drain a bit of battery as it runs in the background, so you’ll have to manually end the process every time you finish using the app. That said, adding frames to photos is still a good choice; it has some unique and creative frames, with endless free options based on how many photos you want to use.
You can choose between Layout for basic frames or Poster for more extensive options. Within Poster you will find different options based on category (decoration, food, daily) and how many photos you have selected.
April can also be a one stop shop for all your mobile photo editing needs with some really solid filters, editable text and stickers. When you apply a preset frame, April can also apply a filter, but you can remove that manually if you just want the frame.
7. Instasize (Android and iOS)
Instasize has many great frames to add to your photos, perfect for sharing on social media. With the app open, tap the plus icon At the bottom. You then need to select where your image will be saved (for example Cloud or Camera).
After selecting the image, use the bar at the bottom to scroll to the other side and tap the frame icon (second from right). Select a frame theme, such as oil- or water, and you can choose a specific frame within that. Some frame themes are only available with a paid subscription, but you can get a free trial if you really want to use them.
With a specific frame design selected, use the bar above to adjust the size of the frame. When you’re happy with the edits, tap the share icon to send the image directly to social apps or save it to your gallery.
8. ShakeItPhoto (iOS)
ShakeItPhoto is an iOS app that only does one thing and it does it very well: it adds a Polaroid frame to your photo along with a vintage effect. You can take the photo directly in ShakeItPhoto or grab a photo from your camera roll.
If you’re just looking for an easy way to add a Polaroid frame to your iOS photos, then look no further than this app.
to download: ShakeItPhoto for iOS ($1.99)
Desktop apps that add borders to photos
Finally, there are a number of desktop apps that can also add a frame to your photos.
9. Adobe Photoshop
Photoshop has a ton of features, only one of which is the option to add a frame to any photo. If you already have access to Adobe Creative Cloud, using Photoshop gives you full control over the final product.
You can go as simple as adding a white border to your photo with Photoshop, or you can add a pattern, change the shape and more. The only limit is your own creativity.
A handy trick when it comes to creating borders with Photoshop is to use the Clipping Mask feature:
- After you’ve designed your frame, add a box or rectangle that shows exactly where the photo will go.
- Add the photo as an extra layer in your design.
- With the photo layer above the shape where you want your photo to be, right click on the image layer and select Create Clipping Mask.
- Once you’ve done this, the image will be limited to the rectangle or shape you clipped it to. You can move the image within the confines of that shape with the Movement (Keyboard Shortcut V) tool.
- To resize, select the Rectangular Marquee tool (shortcut m), right click on the image and select Free transformation. Press and hold the Shift and use the mouse, grab one of the corners of the image and drag to resize.
You can also use this method to add textures and patterns to your frames, as it ensures that your additions are limited to the shape you’ve created.
For those of you who don’t want to spend money on Creative Cloud, GIMP offers similar features to Photoshop and is worth exploring.
10. Microsoft Paint
If you just want a simple color border and you have a Windows computer, Paint will do just fine.
Open your image in Paint. In the top toolbar, within the To shape section, click on the rectangle. You can then Click and drag around the outside of your image to create the border.
If you want to tweak it a bit, use the Overview drop-down list to switch between options such as Solid color and felt tip. Also the Mate dropdown will change the thickness, while the Colors section you can change the color of the border.
There are also plenty of free Microsoft Paint alternatives that allow you to easily add a border to photos as well.
If all else fails, Microsoft Office products can be used to add a basic frame or border to your image. The basic image editing features of Microsoft Word include the ability to add a frame to an image. Similar features can be found in PowerPoint and even Excel.
After inserting your picture into the Word document, right click on it and select Format image. In the menu that opens, you have several options, including adding a variety of drop shadows, a reflection of your image, and an outer glow.
If you want a simple frame, click the To fill icon (bucket) and select Line > Solid Line. You can change the color, line type, width, and more.
From simple photo borders to vintage frames
From adding simple white borders to making your photos look like Polaroids, there’s plenty you can do with the photography features built into your devices or with an app or two. Whichever tool you choose, you’ll always get a clean edge to frame your photo.