License Plate Frame

I purchased a new car recently, and I couldn’t stand the license plate frame the dealer installed. While looking on Amazon for a replacement, I realized “hey, I could make one of these!”. After spending some quality time with my vernier calipers, tape measurer and Illustrator, I was cutting one out and getting it installed:

I’ve attached the AI and SVG here, but they’re also available on my GitHub repo (

License plate (156.6 KB)



Very nice! Thanks for sharing the template! :grinning:

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I was going to do the same thing. You saved me the trouble of measuring the dealer frame. Thanks!


Very cool—thanks!

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Why… Just why!

Why didn’t I think of this when I bought one for my Sister and engraved it for her for Christmas. Why?!

Excellent job!


Interesting to note that your registration stickers are quite different from mine. I have only ever had plates from CA and CO, but both of those states put the stickers at the top of the plate, with a three-letter month sticker on the left, and a year sticker on the right, ie: [JUL] [2018] .

… so would need to remember to flip your template upside down to make it work here.

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You may want to check with your local laws too.
Some states forbid ‘Anything’ being placed on the plate. Yes, even those cheap ‘dealer’ frames are illegal in some places!

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Oh wow, so weird! One of things I hated about the dealer frame was how it covered up the bottom of the registration stickers - would make it a pain each year to stick on the new ones!

I wish they were illegal in all places :stuck_out_tongue:

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Thats a good point.
California allows frames as long as they do not cover/obscure any information, including the issuing state (so the OP’s cover, which obscures the word “ohio” at the top would be deemed illegal in CA). license plate covers, on the other hand, are illegal in CA, even if they are clear.

From Section 5201 of the Vehicle Code, as amended by Section 15 of Chapter 90 of the Statutes of 2016:

(2) The installation of a license plate security cover is not a violation of this subdivision if the device does not obstruct or impair the recognition of the license plate information, including, but not limited to, the issuing state, license plate number, and registration tabs, and the cover is limited to the area directly over the top of the registration tabs. No portion of a license plate security cover shall rest over the license plate number.
( c ) A casing, shield, frame, border, product, or other device that obstructs or impairs the reading or recognition of a license plate by an electronic device operated by state or local law enforcement, an electronic device operated in connection with a toll road, high-occupancy toll lane, toll bridge, or other toll facility, or a remote emission sensing device, as specified in Sections 44081 and 44081.6 of the Health and Safety Code, shall not be installed on, or affixed to, a vehicle.

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That’s the same in CT - it provides the police “reasonable cause” for almost any traffic stop. Then they can fish for something else if they can find it.

… which might backfire…

@jbv I just read the article from your link and just, WOW!

So now that it has been almost 3 years — how are the license plate frames holding up after being exposed to the elements? @sethrowe what type of adhesive did you use and is it still holding up (or have you made several different variations by now?


Our State came out with new license plates and the theme is wind energy so I’ve been asked about creating one that would not block that line on the plate or finding one I can engrave that can view the whole license plate.

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You did a really nice job on the license plate frame! I’ll definitely be looking into making one of those for my own car. Thanks for the great idea! And thanks for the file also!


What if you used transparent acrylic?

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That’s a possibility I hadn’t thought of. My brain is stuck on the red/white logo; but come to think of it I etched a black metal frame last time and it was a silver etched logo and everyone liked it. I think I will play with a piece and see what it looks like in the clear. I’ll try that — thanks!

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Here is one I modified to work with Ohio Plates. Didn’t need the 2 bottom holes, lets the stickers show up better. Thanks to sethrowe for the Original Idea an pattern.

liscense plate frame

Change the wording if you like to your own.


Did you make this in acrylic (how thick?) If so, did you only engrave? Did you fill with paint or leave as is? thanks for the info and the pattern!