Photoshop Tutorial: Adding Cool Borders

In this tutorial I’m going to show you how to make borders easily using quickmask and filters in photoshop. Here’s a sample that I did using quick mask and fragment filter;

adding borders with photoshop

Let’s get started!

Step 1.) Open your image, and duplicate your background layer. Choose your background layer and fill it with whatever color you want for your border. Mine is white.

adding borders with photoshop

Step 2.) Now make a rectangular selection just like when you want to crop the picture. The area outside is where the border effect will happen.

adding borders with photoshop

Step 3.) Inverse your selection (ctrl+shift+i) and press ‘q’ to apply the quick mask.

adding borders with photoshop

Step 4.) It’s time to play around with your filters. I’ll get mine done with the fragment filter. So, go to Filter > Pixelate > Fragment, and apply the same filter 5 times by pressing ‘ctrl +f’ 4 times.

adding borders with photoshop

Step 5.) After you apply the effect, press ‘q’ to turn the quick mask into selection, and delete the selection. You should get something like this..

adding borders with photoshop

Experiment with the different filters and colors to get your cool borders effects.

12 Responses to “Photoshop Tutorial: Adding Cool Borders”

  1. Yan Sin says:

    I have a picture taken from a 4Mpix Camera. When i tried repeating the fragment, the fragmentation was not big enough as seen from your tutorial.
    How can i go abt setting larger Fragmentation? To obtain something like what is shown here?

  2. Your picture is too big, the fragment filter wont give you the same result no matter how many times you repeat it. Try to resize its resolution to 72pixel or use other filter..I found the Glass filter was quite interesting..

  3. Gopinath says:

    Good article..

  4. Warrenzo says:

    i tried the 72 pixels thing myself and still after turning off the mask again, the effect is lost

  5. Adam Cross says:

    I think it is to red as i am ginger and have freckles

  6. Fred says:

    Ok so im new at the photoshop thing. Im fine till i get to delete selection. I just keep deleting the entire picture. How do i just delete the selection? Im useing adobe photoshop 6.

  7. writxna says:

    FRED… i’m also quite new to this photoshop thingy.. but i think DELETE the selection means DESELECTING…. which you can do like.. (Ctrl+D) or SELCT>DESELECT.. ^_^ ]
    gud day

    n BTW.. i also couldn’t do this effect.. guess my picture also was too big.. heheh..

  8. Chris Taylor says:

    Nice effect but I couldn’t get it to work either

  9. Chris Taylor says:

    Now I’ve got it. The background copy must be the active layer after step 1.

  10. Yoeri says:

    Very nice effect! I use it on


  11. annie says:

    I found out a way since it never worked out for me either:

    After step 1 you make the backgroundcopy layer active and continue to step 4.
    After step 4 you press the quick mask tool and you turn the mask into a selection. Then you press inverse (ctrl+shift+i) and the selection is now everything except the border. Then make a new layer (“layer” choose “new” then “layer via copy”. Now make your backgroundcopy layer active again and in the layers palette you change opacity to make your border turn visible and the border will have the same colour as your background layer! Hope that will help a bit as it worked out for me : )

  12. Rakesh says:

    god bless u man . .!!
    u are awesome . . .!! 🙂

Leave a Reply