Counted cross stitch is a very fun and rewarding hobby. It's one of the few crafts I enjoy and feel confident about the finished results. Counted cross stitch is an excellent activity to teach your children as well!
There are several attractive ways to mount and frame your finished cross stitch projects. Since frames and mounting accessories can be very expensive, cost is always an issue. I've found a couple of ways to cut corners and still produce excellent results.
Frames are very easy to find. I like to use frames of all shapes and sizes because they give your finished counted cross stitch projects more character.
I often bring frames home with no particular project in mind. I like to buy them cheap and save them until I need them!
One of the best places to buy inexpensive frames is at yard sales. You can often pick them up for .50 each (compared to $5 to $50 at a store). Thrift stores are also a great place to look. But when I'm pressed for time, I just pick up a $2 frame at Walmart.
It isn't necessary for your frames to have glass. Sometimes I'll frame my projects with glass in front of them, but not always. When I decide not to use glass, I always spray the surface of the fabric with Scotchguard to help prevent future stains.
I use two different methods for mounting my projects. You can purchase mounting boards in any craft store. There are two kinds: padded and non-padded.
I've found that the padded mounting boards work great when you have a frame that doesn't have a glass front. The padding makes the fabric stand out a bit from the frame which looks very nice. Padding also makes it easier to smooth out any wrinkles in the fabric.
I prefer non-padded mounting boards when I use frames with glass. The nice thing about using mounting boards is that your fabric will stick to them, so it won't move around on you after your project has been mounted and framed.
I've discovered a quick trick that prevents you from having to purchase the mounting board if you're using the non-padded variety.
The back of a frame is usually a piece of cardboard similar to the cardboard the mounting board is made of. I've found that you can use a spray-adhesive to attach your fabric directly onto the cardboard back of the frame, and it works very well.
You can get two different types of spray adhesive to use with your cross stitch projects: repositionable and permanent. I prefer to use the repositionable spray adhesive because you can still move the fabric around until you get it adjusted just right.
After I've got the fabric positioned just where I want it, I use masking tape to fold over the edges of the mounting board. I get the tape as close to the edge of the mounting board as possible on the front of the fabric, and simply fold the remainder to the back. This helps keep the edges of the fabric from fraying.
Additional tips for mounting your counted cross stitch creations:
If you get a small stain on your fabric, you can usually remove it by dampening the fabric and rubbing a bar of soap or dishwashing liquid into the stain and then rinsing it.
Before you position your fabric on the mounting board, iron it gently to remove any wrinkles. If you slightly mist the fabric with regular water, even the toughest wrinkles will come right out.
Using Scotchguard on your fabric is optional, but it can help prevent future stains from ruining your precious artwork!
About the author:
Rachel Paxton is a freelance writer, mom, and owner of four home and family websites. Visit her at www.crafty-moms.com.
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