Textiles can present some unique framing issues. Should they be stretched, mounted, tacked-down, or left as they are? How can you make that sampler look “alive” as opposed to just a picture of one? First things first, make certain your piece is laundered or dry-cleaned before having it framed. There may be hundreds of years of oil and other damaging elements built-up on your precious fabric works.Here are some great ideas from Larson-Juhl, taken from Larson-Juhl.com. Frame Factory carries the complete line of mouldings and mats from Larson-Juhl.
Think Inside the Box! This cross-stitch ornament is dimensional so it was framed in a shadowbox. There are several different approches to framing needle art and other textiles, depending on the attributes of each piece. Although fabric such as drapes and upholstered furniture are not protected by glass, after the long hours spent creating these works of art, glazing is suggested as a means of protecting needlework from airbourne pollutants such as smoke or grease, as well as curious fingers. Glass should never come in direct contact with your needlework. Unless the glass can be separated from the needlework by a liner or mats, a spacer should always be added. We recommend coservation grade glass or acrylic.
The methods and products used to frame needle art may vary depending on the type of work it is. In all cases,it will need to be mounted to or over a backing to keep it flat and straight. Sometimes padding (usually quilt batting) is used between the needle art and the board. This provides a padded look that softens the appearance and also allows knots and threads on the back side of the work to sink in rather than creating lumps visible on the front. Counted cross-stitch is often matted prior to framing. Other types of needleart, such as needlepoint and crewel embroidery, typically are not matted due to the fact they are bulkier and could cause the mat not to sit flat. For these types of work, a fabric covered liner may be substituted for the mat. Frames can be whatever color and style that best suits the work. Wider, heavier frames can work well with the heavier forms of needle art but may overpower a dainty cross-stitch.
As seen in the 2011 Framing Fashion Show! This embroidered cloth was a find at a market in northern Thailand. Unframed, it may just look like a fabric scrap, but this really shows how a wonderful frame design can turn something into a true work of art.
Cross-Stitch with Matting Needlepoint w/ Fillet
OTHER TEXTILES Other types of textiles people commonly frame include small quilts or quilt squares, christening gowns, sports jerseys and doilies. Your local framer will be able to help you with ideas for proper preservation and presentation of your treasures.
A Small Quilt