Updated April 17, 2018
I stitched this SF heart yesterday. The heart itself was done completely but I needed to add the background.
Because I framed this and sent it to my daughter. This was stitched with a purpose and it isn’t going into a box of stitched but unfinished needlepoint.
And that brings me to an important issue for us stitchers. Too often we stitch things without thinking about how they will be finished. It’s only when we get to the finishers or the framers that we discover that it will be extra to cut that special mat or that no one makes a box that size.
The way to solve this is to stitch with the finishing in mind. Mats which aren’t square or rectangular always cost at least twice as much. And since odd shapes, like hearts, are cut free hand often they don’t look as good. I had a needlepoint that was a present for an exchange student ruined because the free-hand mat was cut so badly.
If your needlepoint is a standard size ever these odd shapes may not be a problem. Die-cuts and scrapbook frames now make these easier to do. You can do even better if your mat is a standard size, like 4X6.
Ditto with frames, if your finished piece is not whole inches, you will have to get a custom frame (lots of money). If it’s whole inches you can buy frame sides and make the frame yourself. And if you stitch or mat to standard frame sizes, you can buy a ready-made frame and save even more. I’ll be doing tis with my millefiori cross because the biggest size I could do on that canvas was 4×5.
A nice hint for standard size frames is to check out custom framing stores, often they make frames from ends of their custom pieces, you get a custom look at a great price.
But what if it isn’t a picture, but a box. Know the sizes of boxes for needlework. I know from experience that 5″ square is a hard size to find. 4″ or 6″ is better.
Ditto for leather items.
Keep a list of sizes someplace handy to use as a reference.
Then, when you stitch, make the background or total size of the piece fit one of these sizes.
You’ll be so happy you did.