Monday, September 21, 2015

September Cottage Cross Stitch

After discovering Priscilla's blog and the very cool way she displays some of her cross stitching without professional framing, I was motivated to give it a whirl. She briefly describes her framing formula, but I haven't been able to discover a photo of it, so I set out to experiment with it.

I will tell you how it worked and my thoughts for next month's cottage project.

I finished my September cottage in the middle of September. I then proceeded to locate a frame to work with. After looking around town and on the Internet for a square frame, I was coming up empty handed. I headed to the new Hobby Lobby in Destin on Friday. I ended up thinking that some of those decorative saying frames was actually cheaper than actual square frames that were empty. With a 40% off coupon, I came away with this.

The size was good and it was about a half inch deep which was good. I plan to put it on a display stand, but it would easily be hung up too, because it was made to hang up. No extra costs for that.

I then bought some of the sticky board that you mount stitching on for framing.

It was very thin, which I wanted. I wasn't too sure how my magnets would work if it were too thick.

Sorry for the poor photography. I am just an iPhone user. Hubby's camera is too complicated for me.

I decided to use my tailor's chalk to label on the cross stitch where I wanted it to show and fold back and then where I would cut it off to make the square.
The tailor's chalk was perfect, because it is easily visibly, but easy to remove if it shows.

Next, I took the mounting board and cut a square for the cross stitch to go on. I used my quilting ruler to mark it and then pencil the cutting lines.

I tried my rotary scissors to cut it since it was so thin, but it would not go all the way through, so I finished it up with scissors. The rotary scissors did help score it, and that kept it from bending.

I then pulled off the brown stuff to expose the sticky side.

I am showing lots of pictures, but that is because I think that is helpful to me.

Lay the cross stitch on top and smooth out. You can see it behind the thin linen of the cross stitch.

*** Now, here is where I will have to think about changes for October. I wonder if I should have made the margin less for the cross stitch. We talk about this again at the end.

I glued the corners first. I used Elmer's glue, because I didn't have anything else. I normally always have a bottle of Tacky glue that comes in the brown bottle. I would suggest that. The Elmer's worked, but I am concerned about long term.

I then pinned them down with some craft size clothes pins. These pins are mini versions. I let them work on that while I began the cloth portion for the backing of red gingham.

When that had set, I then put glue down the sides and used clothes pins again to hold it until it dried.

I followed the same procedures for the gingham. I mounted it on the sticky board. I had intended to use just tag board, but I didn't have any the right size, so I just used the other. I don't think it would be necessary to use the sticky mounting board for the cloth. I think a thin cardboard would be fine.

I alternated working with the stitching and this to let each dry.

Then, it was time to think about the magnets to hold it all together.

Now, this was the mystery part of Priscilla's work. She spoke of using sheet metal behind the stitching with a magnet on the frame. 

I headed off to my little Ace Hardware. I love me some Lowe's, but when I have these little projects, my little guys at Ace are just always so helpful. I headed in and shared with the gentleman what I was trying to do.  Well, we first thought about using some galvanized stripping you put around metal pipes. We could snip off a strip to glue down and that would work with the magnet and not be heavy and would be tons cheaper. A pack of that was $1.99 and would be way more than I would need.

But...wait, he had another idea. Washers! I left with a few washers for 16 cents a piece.

Those Ace guys have helped me many times even when I walked in with no clue what I was talking about.

I glued one to the center of the frame. I measured to get the center.

One interesting thing I discovered with this. I used a glue gun and it was an amazing thing happened. The glue cooled instantly, like too instantly when it hit the washer. I had to peel it off and start over. I was ready to plop it down fast. Must be something about the metal in the washers that caused that. It was wild.

Moving on. I told you I was being very detailed with lots of pictures.

It was time for the magnet on the back of the stitching. I hot glued it to the center. 

Time to put it all together.

Houston we have a problem.... 

It wasn't enough to hold it when I stood it up. It needed two of them.
Maybe sheet metal is stronger???

Either way, I went back and added another washer and magnet. Next time, I would just put one high and one low.

I did have to be a bit more careful to make sure the placement would match up for the magnet and washer.

So, all in all, it was successful. 

My concern was that maybe I would like less margin around the cottage and more fabric showing. I will toy with that idea before I actually mount the October one. I will use the same frame for all of the months. I may change out the fabric for months. I know for October that I am going to use this black with candy corns that I have in my stash of fabric. (I have a problem. I am a fabric hoarder. It is not pretty, people.)

IF I like the less margin, I will redo September when I finish all of them.

Here is the finished project. I plan to put a bow with some cute school days ribbon either on the frame or display stand holding the frame. I was away from home all day today, so I had no time to work on it.

I will share that later.

And that was that, and I have to get busy and finish October,


  1. Thanks for being so precise and showing lots of photos! That really helped me! I am going to try this with the next small piece of stitching I do! I got a piece of linen at Hobby Lobby to do prairie schooler Winter Wind and I am not happy with it! I will finish it but lesson learned, get future pieces of linen at my cross stitch shop! Be sure and show us October!

    1. I will share October for sure. I ordered my linen from Amazon, but I used the kind that was recommended on the pattern. I have very limited shopping for items here. There is a fabulous fabric store locally owned in Pensacola, but they don't have much in the craft department. I have learned those lessons the hard way whether it is fabric, thread, or any other sewing item. You get what you pay for. Most of the fabric and thread I buy at JoAnn's makes me want to curse and blame the sewing machine, when really it is all about the quality.

  2. I haven't cross stitched in ages, used to all the time! Great tutorial; looks amazing!

    1. Why, thank you! I do love cross stitching. I took a long hiatus from stitching when the kids got big enough to have to after school activities and work got harder. I am loving getting back into it. I remember how much I enjoyed it.


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