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Cleaning and Framing Cross Stitch Tips

If you are looking for information on fabrics, cottons, needles, stitching tools or stitching instructions please visit out cross stitch instructions page here.

Framing your Cross Stitch
Finishing a Cross Stitch Card
Finishing a Cross Stitch Bookmark


It is a good idea to wash the completed project when you are finished to freshen the colours, remove any dirt and skin oils from the fabric.

If you have used DMC cottons, Anchor or Madeira these are colourfast up to 95 degrees celsius. However if you have used cheaper cottons these can run. To test before you wash, slightly dampen a paper towel and place onto your stitched work. If colours come off than it would not be colourfast so it would be best not to wash your cross stitch.

To wash your finished work wash in lukewarm water with a little mild soap. Don't leave it to soak but swish it through the water then rinse it well in warm, then cool water.

Remove the excess water by placing the cross stitch onto a soft, clean towel and then let it dry naturally.

When ironing to avoid flattening the stitches place the work face down onto a clean fluffy towel on your ironing board. Iron from the back on a medium setting. You can also place a tea towel or handkerchief over the back of the stitching to iron if you are worried about marking the fabric.

Framing your Cross Stitch

I would highly recommend for my large patterns to have them professionally framed when finished. You have spent may hours stitching the patterns so you want them to look their best. It is however the more expensive option so below are some tips to framing your own cross stitch.

When purchasing a frame choose a frame that compliments your design you want a frame that is not to large that it distracts from your work. Generally the glass is not used in frames for cross stitch. If you are concerned about staining you can lightly spray scotchguard over your completed work.

First you will need to stretch and mount your work before it is put into the frame.

It is best to have a padded mount to display your work, if you are going to use glass in your frame you should not used a padded mount though. Use foamcore board which you can purchase at an arts and crafts shop or any mounting board that is easy to cut and pins can be inserted into it. Make sure the mounting board is acid free.

Using a sharp knife cut the mounting board to the size of your frame with the glass removed. Cut a piece of wadding the same size as your mounting board and place it on top then place your completed cross stitch over that and centre it.

Using pins, pin your cross stitch down along the edges of the board, start in the middle of each side and pin towards to corners. Stretching the fabric as you go and making sure the work remains centred.

Try to position the pins along the same line of aida holes along the top and bottom and left to right to keep it really straight. When you are happy with the positioning trim the excess fabric to about 2 inches (5cm) around all edges.

There are two method to securing the excess fabric to the back of your mounting board. You can either tape it down with a strong masking tape or use the lace method with strong thread as below.

Once you are happy with the results you can then remove the pins from the edges of the board.

Then place the mounting board into your frame and place the backing of the frame in and use gummed paper tape or masking tape to seal around the edges at the back.

If you use a non padded mounting board you may also like to use matting inside your frame first. Choose a colour that compliments your cross stitch design so try to find a mat colour that has a similar shade to a colour found in your cross stitch.

For more tips about framing the websites below have some useful information.


Finishing a Cross Stitch Card

There are many blank cards you can purchase online or in craft shops which are suitable to use to make cross stitch greeting cards.

If you would prefer to make your own below are the instructions. You can also use these instructions to mount your work using premade cards.

First step is choosing a cardboard colour that would compliment your work. It is useful to take your completed design to the craft shops with you so you can see what it looks like against the cardboard.

It is helpful to create your greeting card in a standard size that will fit into a standard envelope.

Measure the height of the card you are wanting to fit into your envelope and the width. Times the width by three and cut out a piece or cardboard. Alternatively you can purchase one three sided blank card and use this as your template.

Once you have your piece of cardboard mark along the back to divide the card equally into three and then fold the left hand side into the middle and fold the right hand side into the middle.

Open the card up again and in the middle section you need to mark out the size of the opening to display your cross stitch. There are various stamps you can purchase at cross stores to make this easier for you, they also come in different shapes such as oval, square, heart, star etc. Just make sure that your pattern will be clearly visible. You can practice on a spare piece of cardboard first.

Once you have cut out the shape in the middle section either with a card stamp or by hand with a sharp cutting knife, you are ready to display your cross stitch.

First lay down double sided tape all around the back of the opening in the card then being careful to centre your design, lay your design onto the double sided tape.

You may also like to lay a piece of wadding or white paper the same size as your stitched piece behind your stitched piece to stop the colour of the cardboard showing through. Then fold the left hand side in and secure with glue.

Finishing a Cross Stitch Bookmark

You can purchase either premade cross stitch bookmarks or cross stitch Aida Band to make your cross stitch bookmarks on.

To make your own cross stitch bookmarks there are quite a few different methods around. I describe some different ones for you below and I have provided links to useful websites.

For a very basic bookmark. Once you have finished stitching cut around around 1cm of the bookmark, place some interfacing on the back of the bookmark and iron. Then place another piece of aida or coloured material on the back. You can then stitch or overlock the edges if needed to stop fraying.

A member M Kwakkenbos has provided a very useful description of how to finish off bookmarks. Basically you take the left and right side of the bookmark bring them to the front and stitch along the edge and then turn the bookmark inside out to hide the stitching and fray the top and bottom of the bookmark. Here is a picture of her description.

Click here for links to other websites with useful ways to finish off bookmarks.



NEW!!  Artecy Cross Stitch has another new website for the fantastic new craft of Pixelhobby We can convert most of our cross stitch patterns over to Pixelhobby format, best of all it takes you much less time to complete Pixelhobby than cross stitch and there is no counting, or threading needles involved. Click on the banner above to see what it's all about.


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