Once your cross-stitched piece is completed it is time to share your hard work and artistic talent. Part of the fun of creating your cross-stitched piece is in the selection of a frame that will best display it. Depending on the piece itself, the right combination of picture frame and mat can turn it into a treasured heirloom or a cherished work of art. Follow these simple steps and you will have a cross-stitched piece you are proud to display in your home or give as a gift to someone special.
The first step is to select a picture frame and mat or mats that complement and enhance your cross-stitched piece and your decor. Does your piece lend itself to an ornate picture frame or would it have more eye-appeal in a simple picture frame? Let your personal taste, decor and the artwork itself guide you to the perfect picture frame and mat combination.
Now that you have selected your mat you will need backing on which to secure your cross-stitched piece. It needs to be the same size as your mat. Backing can be cut from mat board or foam-core. Once the backing is the size you need, cut a window that is a quarter inch larger than the mat window opening. Save the cutout piece to be used later. Now attach double sided stitchery tape to the edges of the backing piece.
The backing with the window cut out can now be mounted to the mat with double sided tape.
Center your cross-stitched piece in the backing window with the stitchery side facing out through the mat opening. Press the backing piece you cut out to make the window onto the back of the cross-stitched piece. Work with it until you have the stitchery centered.
Start with a corner and pull the fabric taut and press it onto the double sided tape. Continue around the stitchery until all the fabric is held by the tape and your cross-stitched piece is centered. It may take a few adjustments to get it fitted and centered properly. When you have it centered, tape the backing and window piece together with framing tape. Now, cut a piece of mat to fit over the back of the piece to protect and secure it.
Now you are ready to frame your matted piece. Place it into the frame you selected and secure. Cut a piece of Kraft paper to cover the back of the frame. To finish off, attach the hanger of your choice – sawtooth hanger or eye hooks with picture wire – and you are ready to hang your cross-stitched work of art.
To Glaze or Not to Glaze
Where you hang your piece and the climate conditions should determine whether or not you frame your cross-stitch under glass.
Dust: Use glass if you want to protect your piece from dust. Dust accumulation can cause serious damage to the fabric.
Humidity: Use glass if you plan to hang your piece in the kitchen or bathroom. High humidity can cause damage to the fabric. However, if it isn’t properly sealed, condensation could form on the glass and that could cause mildew and mold issues.
Living in a climate with few dry days and high humidity could make it extremely difficult to create a moisture proof seal. If you live in an area with high humidity, consider taking your cross-stitched piece to a professional framer for proper sealing or just leave it unglazed. Don’t hang it in your kitchen if you leave it without glass because airborne grease and oil could harm your fabric.