Saturday, September 23, 2017

How I Do It - Framing Part B

In Part A I showed how I measured for the frame and how I mounted and pinned the piece to prepare it for the frame.

Part B - I will show how I lace the piece.

Part C - I will show how I put everything together in the frame.

Part D - I will show how I finish the back of the frame, attach the hanger hardware and apply the bumpers.

This is how I do it.  What works for me.

First thing I do when I lace is gather my mounted piece that has been pinned to a piece of foam core, a tapestry needle, my thread, scissors and in this case with this piece a thick towel.  I will be lacing my piece on my kitchen table and it has several buttons.  Putting a towel down will cushion the front and prevent damage to any of the buttons.  Plus the towel will help me slide the mounted piece back and forth on the table.

I am using a tapestry needle with an eye big enough for my thread and DMC #12 pearl cotton thread.  

Next thing I do is decide which direction I want to lace first.  Vertically or horizontally.  Lacing the longest first or the shortest first.  I also think about what I would like to have going into the frame when I put everything together and use my points (will explain what that is later in this series).  I know I will be folding my corners in a certain way so I factor that into my decision.  I also consider the lacing process - how I want my threads to be pulled - what I mean by that will be explained in this post.  

This is the short or horizontal direction of my design on the front.

This is the long or vertical direction of my design on the front.

I decide to do the long or vertical direction first.  I thread my needle with a fairly long piece of thread. I don't knot my thread.  

I then start to lace.  I make my first stitch or leg of lacing by doing a simple straight stitch.  I want to anchor my thread. 

I make my first stitch close to the edge of my foam core, using three to four threads on my fabric, not to close to the edge of my fabric.  I pull my thread all the through the fabric, leaving a small tail.

I do it a couple more times, wrapping my thread in the same place each time and then bring my needle up from the back through the center of the wrapped thread/stitches.  I am using a couple threads in my evenweave fabric, between three or four.

I go to the opposite end and do a straight stitch.  Again, using between three or four threads in my evenweave fabric.

Keeping my thread evenly spaced and straight, pulling lightly, not hard, not too tight I go back to the other side and do a  straight stitch.

Time to add more thread.   I take the needle off my thread, unwind a bit from the ball of thread, bring the two pieces together and do a simple knot.  I then take the ball of thread and unwind a length, cut the thread and rethread my needle.  I found this method works easier, is quicker and my thread doesn't knot up so bad.  

As the first picture shows I needed thread just after I did a stitch in the fabric.  I made the stitch and had thread to add on more after getting pass that stitch.

When I don't have enough thread to make a complete pass through or turn around with my fabric, I back up, snip the thread and repeat the above couple of steps.

Lacing on the long or vertical sides is done.  Now I need to anchor and cut my thread.  Before I do this though, I go back...

and do a light pull on the threads.  Not hard, not strong, lightly to get the looseness out of them.  When I did the lacing, I used even pressure, kept the lacing thread straight and even.  When I am done with my lacing, I want to be able to pull out the pins from along the edges and not have my fabric slide.  I took the time to pin so my piece was centered.  With my lacing I don't want to have to repeat that step (pinning) or have to realign or readjust.  My pins hold my fabric so I can lace.  I want my lacing to hold my fabric and kept my stitched design looking nice, even and centered.

There is excess thread during this step.  I will be able to pull that out at the very end.  Having this step in mind when I add new thread (think knots) helps me from having to pull knots through the fabric. If the knotted thread is near the middle of the lacing or middle area of the foam core, the knot will move during this step, but the knot going through the fabric will be at a minimum.  If it does happen, and it did for me on this piece, I just used a straight pin and worked the knot through the threads of the fabric.

When I have the threads taut, not tight, I end the lacing for this direction the same way I started it.  I wrap my thread around a few of the threads in the evenweave fabric and bring my needle up through the middle.  I cut my thread leaving a small tail.

Looks nice.  Is even.  Space between the lacing is even.  Straight.  Evenweave fabric is not stretched or pulled.

Now I prepare the other direction for lacing.

I fold over the ends, working to even out the fabric so it lays nice and smooth.  I pin to hold the fold in place.  I do this for all four corners.

Then, as with the long side, I thread my needle and take my first stitch.  However, with this stitch, I go through both pieces of fabric, just once on the end, both sides.  I start off by doing a couple straight stitches and come up through the middle.

I go to the other side, go through both pieces of fabric and continue on lacing. I only go through one piece of the fabric for the remainder of the folded over area on both sides.  I go through both pieces of the folded fabric on the far outside or where the fold is.  That's all that is necessary.  I want to anchor my thread and secure the end.

With this piece, because it is so long on this side, when I needed to add thread, I pulled the already stitched lacing so by the time I got to the finish line or opposite end, I didn't have to go back and do the whole entire length of lacing. Plus the lacing with these two sides was short not like the other two sides - the vertical sides.  I didn't want to have to pull a knotted connection through my evenweave fabric.

I end the lacing the same way I did the other two sides.

Lacing is done.  Looks nice.

I do one final lookie see on all four sides, inspect the front and seeing that it all looks good, I pull the pins.  I leave the basting threads in.

Front.  Looks good.  Even.  Nice.  Fabric stays in place.  Lines are even.  I'm a happy camper.

Have to say, as with quilting and finding the binding and hemming very relaxing, so is pinning and lacing.  Very calming.  Very relaxing.  Once I get into a rhythm with the needle and thread, it goes smoothly.  I take my time in pulling my thread through the fabric - makes for less knots and tangles that way.  Saves time in the long run too.  Don't have to take out and repeat.

Next up is How I Do It - Putting it in the Frame