Finishing a cross-stitched project is exciting and rewarding. You've spent many hours making sure each stitch was perfectly placed on the fabric. You've taken care to choose the perfect color of thread to bring your piece to life, and you can't wait to proudly display your project for everyone to see.
Proper stitching techniques and the right thread are important to the outcome of a project, but properly preparing your finished piece for display is also vital. From laundering your piece to choosing the right frame, the proper finishing steps can make a big difference in how your displayed project looks.
Washing your cross-stitched piece
Washing your piece is important for removing hidden dirt. Your project has been handled numerous times throughout the construction process. Oils that are naturally released from your hands can cause fabric to discolor over time.
Always use cold water and mild detergent when laundering your fabric. If your tap water is hard, consider using distilled water instead. Add a few drops of a mild dish washing liquid to a clean container and fill with cold water. Soak your piece for several minutes. Rinse in another container filled with cold water until all soap disappears.
Place your piece between two clean towels and pat dry. Place between two dry towels and iron with a warm iron to remove wrinkles and stitching hoop lines.
Framing your cross-stitched piece
Having your cross-stitched piece professionally framed is best. Working with a framing specialist will help you achieve a finished piece you will be proud to give as a gift or display in your home.
Select a high-quality frame for your cross-stitched piece. Traditional wooden picture frames are good choices and will always be in style in home décor. Choosing a colored frame is ideal if you want to accent the piece or highlight a specific color in the piece.
You will need to decide whether to use glass in the framing process or not. If the piece will be displayed in a kitchen, glass is a good option for protecting your piece from cooking fumes and residue that can stain fabrics. The same is true if there are smokers in your home. Cigarette smoke can stain delicate cross-stitch fabrics over time and turn them yellow.
If you do choose to use glass in the frame, you may also want to use a mat to keep the stitched area from directly touching the glass. After several years, chemicals in the thread may interact and discolor the glass.
If your piece is going to be shipped as a gift, eliminate the glass to prevent breakage during transport. You may also want to bypass the glass if you transport your stitched work to craft shows to make your piece lighter to tote around.
After you've spent long hours creating the perfect cross-stitched piece, you don't want to take away from the beauty of your design by displaying it poorly. Take the extra time to properly wash your project and have it professionally framed. Doing so can make the difference between an heirloom-quality picture and one that is easily forgotten. Contact a company, such as InstaFrame Galleries, to handle your framing needs.