This clever product was created by Barbara Elmore late last year to help you keep your project steady in a stand. All too often we find ourselves adjusting the clamps because our frames and hoops just don’t grip well enough. Some makers have tried to solve this by putting strips of foam inside the jaws, but most do not. As your stand gets older the foam wears out.
What’s needed is something that is both thin and will grip. Using oilcloth and flannel-backed vinyl, Barbara has come up with a great solution. Shaped like simple teddy bears, there are two in a package, one of each kind.
To use them, place them around the edge of your frame and insert that into the stand’s clamp. Tighten as you normally would.
I tested each of the bar huggers using my regular stand, a K’s metal stand. I stitched on the same project using the same thread three ways: with no hugger, with oilcloth hugger, and with vinyl hugger. I stitched the same amount with each.
I found that both of the huggers worked well to keep the project steady in the stand. While I don’t have to tighten the clamp often, I do often adjust the bar that holds the clamp. With the huggers I found that I did this far less.
I can see that this product will work well for folks who don’t tighten their clamps as much as I do. But what about people like me, who don’t need the tightening feature?
As you stitch, you’ll move the frame and it will loosen in the clamp. It may also wiggle out of the clamp. This happens to me all the time. Without the hugger, I was constantly pushing the frame back into the clamp. With both of the huggers I found this problem disappeared.
I liked that the huggers made the whole process of using a stand feel more secure. I think that I don’t often use the stand because subconsciously I don’t like this insecure feeling. With the Bar Hugger this problem disappears. It’s a great little tool!
Tips for Using Bar Huggers
If you use a Lowrey or the System 4 with their scroll bars, the Bar Hugger will not work. You must use it with a clamp-style stand.
Embroidery hoops will work with the BarHugger. Q Snaps may be too thick for it.
It can be used with any kinds of clamp, even those from the hardware store.