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How to frame cross stitch

Save money on professional framing by learning how to frame cross stitch by using lacing or mounting on canvas with our handy beginners' guide.

How to frame cross stitch step 1

There are many ways you can frame a cross stitch, in this post we will show you our favourite (and easiest) methods so you can feel confident framing your own cross stitch, rather than spending lots of money on a professional framing. A cross stitch looks great hanging on the wall to brighten up any room or give as a special gift to someone you love! But before you can give it away you need to make sure it’s looking its best!

If you love cross stitch and want some inspiration for new projects to take on (and frame once you have finished) try these cute cat cross stitch patterns, or the cross stitch flower patterns, our most popular projects available for free right here on Gathered. Looking for a seasonal project, try the cute gnome cross stitch bookmarks. If you are looking for something a bit different, check out these amazing cross stitch cushion kits, and make a spectacular cushion.

Our first method is presenting your finished cross stitch as a canvas. You’ll need just a few materials and a staple gun for this easy method. Find out how to frame your cross stitch as a canvas with three easy steps:

How to frame a cross stitch – canvas

What you’ll need:

Step 1

Back your stitching with interfacing and press. Measure your canvas frame and mark the halfway points along each edge. Join up these points in pencil to make a cross on your frame.

Use a pin to push through the central stitch of your cross stitched image – the point where the two ‘0’ gridlines cross on the chart. Push the pin through the centre of the cross on the frame. Place the stitching and frame face down and trim your fabric, leaving 5cm (2in) around the edge of the frame.

how to frame a cross stitch

Step 2

Staple the fabric to the centre of the top bar. Move to the centre of the bottom bar, pulling the fabric around the bar to keep it tight, and place the central staple. Repeat, placing a central staple in each of the two side bars. Return to the top bar and place staples on either side of the original, leaving about 2cm (3⁄4in) between each staple. Repeat for the bottom bar, and then the side bars, pulling the stitching taut at each stage.

how to frame a cross stitch

Step 3

To finish the edges neatly, grip the corner of your piece
of stitching and pull it towards the opposite corner. This will create two flaps of fabric on either side. Fold each of these in towards the point that you are pulling and secure them in place with a single staple. Repeat with the other three corners, and trim any excess fabric. Staple a piece of ribbon to the middle of the top edge, to make a hanging loop.

how to frame a cross stitch

Top tip: If you love this look, buy packs of stretcher bars from Amazon to make your own frames.

How to frame a cross stitch – lacing

Our second method to framing a cross stitch is lacing, which means using threads to secure the canvas to a piece of mountboard, ready to frame. Read on for the full guide:

What you’ll need:

  • Mountboard A3 – but select size which suits your project (Amazon)
  • Dressmaking pins (Amazon)
  • Thread – these can be used for your cross stitching too – (Amazon)
  • Frame – choose the suitable frame for your project – (Amazon)

You Will Need

  • mountboard
  • Pins
  • Thread
  • Frame

Total time:

per method

Step 1

Cut a piece of mountboard to fit inside your frame – allow 2-3mm all the way around, so that it fits in easily. Mark the centre on the top and bottom edges of the board. Position the stitched piece on the board, adjusting it until it’s central, then insert pins, as shown. Measure the gap around the design – it should be the same at the sides and at the top, but slightly bigger at the bottom. Insert pins along the top edge, then stretch the fabric down and repeat along the bottom edge.

How to frame a cross stitch step 1


Step 2

Turn the board over and, using strong thread, start lacing the top and bottom edges together. Space the stitches 5-7mm apart, tying in any new length of thread with an over-hand knot, so you’ll have one continuous thread. Once you reach the other side, go back to the start and pull each thread tightly, one at a time. Sew the end in securely. Fold in the side flaps, insert pins along the edges as before, and repeat the process.

How to frame a cross stitch step 2

Step 3

If you’re using glass, place this into your frame, followed by the mount or spacers you want to use. Place the piece of stitching in next, followed by another piece of mountboard. Insert a panel pin into the centre of each side of the frame, to secure all the layers. Turn the frame over to the right side.

How to frame a cross stitch step 3

Step 4

Check that your stitching is perfectly positioned before you begin inserting the rest of the panel pins. Space the pins evenly every 5-8cm, making sure that you place one close to each corner. Use strips of wide, acid-free, gummed tape to cover the gaps, and finally, add the fitments of your choice to display your picture on the wall. Enjoy!

How to frame a cross stitch step 4

That’s it! We hope you found these guides on how to frame cross stitch useful and now feel ready to frame your own work. If you’re looking to take on a new cross stitch project we have plenty of free patterns available, try this funny cross stitch 0r the cross stitch flower pattern which would look lovely on the kitchen wall. If you’re new to cross stitch and need a little refresher take a look at our useful guide on how to cross stitch plus the cross stitch needle sizes guide – a must-have for new stitchers!