It used to be that when you heard the term “cross stitch” you’d instantly conjure up an image of grandma sitting in her comfy recliner, giving her fingers a workout to make something lovely to hang onto the wall. Nowadays, though, it is SEW different.
Todays’ cross stitch creations range from beautiful works of fine art to bonkers works of funny people. Granny was onto something, though, because cross stitching is now as trendy as it is classic. It does take a lot of work, patience, and possibly a few pricked fingers to complete, however. So, when your cross-stitch is finally complete, you’re going to want to show it off.
Thankfully, framing a cross stitch isn’t quite as involved as making one. But just to be sure yours lasts on your wall for years to come, here’s a guide for how to frame a cross stitch that gets right to the… point.
All The Things You Need(le)
- Your Cross Stitch: Or someone else’s. Framing their work of art is a GREAT gift idea. Just sayin’.
- Foamboard: Acid-Free Foamcore is best for preservation. You’re going to want to measure your art first before ordering this. See below!
- Acrylic: To best preserve your work for years to come, choose UV-Protective Acrylic.
- Frame: Find a frame that compliments your cross stitch and lets it be the star. This will also require you to measure your artwork first.
- Spacers: These are important to keep your threads from being squished by the acrylic front. Give our Customer Care department a ring-a-ling to order these at: 800-332-8884
Ready? Let’s Make It Sew!
For our DIY cross stitch project, we re-framed a fine art-style cross stitch done many years ago by the father of Elise, one of our team members. This project not only took the presentation up a notch, but added in some UV protective acrylic and acid-free foamcore backing to make sure her angelic family heirloom stays heavenly for many more years to come.
1. Size Up that Stitch
First things first, you gotta know how big to go. Carefully lay out your completed work and grab your nearest tape measurer. Don’t measure every inch of your fabric, as you will need the excess outside the image to overlap the foamcore in Step Three. Measure at the EDGES of your art, not the center. And I highly, highly recommend measuring at least twice. Best not to leave any loose threads, after all.
2. Find Your Hem-azing Frame
Once you’ve got your measurement, this step is all about your style. Got a funny cross stitch? Stick it in a picture frame with personality. Stitched up something home-y? Try a warm, rustic barnwood frame. And if you’ve got an angelic image like ours, go for an ornate picture frame . We used our 4VS Champagne frame from our Renaissance collection, paired with our LNM4 Linen liner.
The most important part of choosing your frame, however, is the front and backing that goes with it. To best preserve your art work, use UV Protective Acrylic with Acid-Free Foamcore backing. This will ensure your threads stay looking fresh for a long time.
3. Put a Pin in it
At this point you’re probably super excited to get your cross stitch in a frame as fast as possible. We totally get it. This step is important, though, so to get this one right you’ll need to muster up some of that careful patience you used to make this thing in the first place.
Position your cross stitch on your foamcore the way you want it, and work down each edge of the foamcore placing pins all down the side. Follow the rows in the fabric to guide you and keep your work straight. Place the pins every inch or so to keep the fabric from pulling unevenly. Finally, fold the excess material on the back side of the foamcore and pin down the folded corners.
4. Give it Some Space
No squishing your stitches! You took the time to carefully place every single thread in your creation, so you want that yarn to look darn good. Smushing it up against the glass or acrylic front can distort your image and wear it out over time. But don’t worry, this is easy to avoid.
Place your acrylic front into your frame and back it up with spacers. The spacers will run along the edges of your front and will offset your cross stitch from the frame. This should give you the perfect offset from the font that will keep your art work looking like a seam come true.
5. Flaunt Your FAB-ric
Now you get to show it off. Once your artwork is secured to the foamcore, place it into the frame and secure it with framers points or retainer clips. You may want to place an additional backing over the back of your piece for added security and protection. That’s optional, though.
Find the perfect place in your space to hang your framed cross stitch where everyone can admire your handiwork. If it’s small, you might consider making it a part of a gallery wall setting. If it’s big and elegant like our angel cross stitch, let it stand on its own above a mantle or sofa. Either way, you’ve now got a super cool new framed fabric presentation, emphasis on FAB.
Are you (th)ready to show your DIY cross stitch frame off to the world? We’d love to see, and so would our Creative Community. Post it on social and be sure to tag it #framingjoy so we can all admire your work!