Saturday, March 07, 2015

It Arrived!

I did something different with one of my cross stitch projects. I ordered a frame and mats cut to exact size online. I knew I'd have to put the frame together, but how hard could it be if my Middle Eastern beauty had the right look on the wall?

The disassembled frame arrived yesterday evening and I set about reading directions, getting my handy dandy screwdrivers, and put it together. It was a puzzle with all the parts and pieces, and there was still the finished cross stitch to get ready for framing. It was quite the ordeal, but once I figured out how the frame went together, the rest was a matter of carefully stretching the fabric across the acid-free foam core and lashing it into place so that the face at the center of the fabric would center perfectly beneath the mats, mats that were cut to my specifications.

It worked.

I chose a brushed metal silver frame and 2 mats: Caribbean blue and silver foil. I can't stop looking at it as it hangs on the wall beside my bed. It's beautiful and the mats set off the cross stitch so well.

Arab beauty

This is what I began with, minus my signature, which is the year in which it was finished. I did that just before framing with the dark blue-green and a twist of silver metallic thread in the corner.

This is what I ended up with. Isn't she beautiful?

I remember when Beanie would finish the stitching on one of her cross stitch projects and she'd come to me to do the backstitching. She hated the fussy, and often tedious, backstitching. As I stitched I explained that the backstitching, as onerous as it can be, brings the work to life.  Since I've moved away she has had to do her own backstitching, but she does see what I meant all those years ago.

Hoity-Toity never frames her cross stitch, but she does cross stitch. She has a thing for women in hats, something she may have gotten from me since I used to have a collection of paintings, prints, and posters of women in hats, often with their faces hidden by the hats. I even found a silhouette of a turn of the century woman in a hat I found at a barn sale and Mom bought me a ceramic mask of a Victorian woman in a hat looking over her gaudily clad shoulder out into the room. It hangs in my living room now next to the bookcase by the doors onto the back deck. It just seemed right to hang there. I also have ceramic masks of all kinds hanging in my room and the hallway, and soon in the laundry room. There is one mask Mom sent me that is kind of creepy. That's why it's going in the laundry room where it can scare spiders and intruders coming through the laundry room door.

I have to finish the backstitching on the 5 x 7 Japanese geisha I finished in January (yes, I sometimes put off the backstitching too), buy the perfect frame and maybe even mat it, and it will hang in the Jack bedroom. For some reason I see that room as my Japanese/Oreintal/Asian room with fabric floor and table lamps and black lacquered furniture. It's still in my head right now because the room is still filled with boxes of cross stitch supplies, stationery, and books, as well as framed pictures. It is emptier by about 5 framed pictures, awards, and my Extra Class amateur radio operator license. I brought them into my bedroom to hang on the walls here.
Now all I need to do is find the right pieces to stitch and hang on the wall over my bed. I see a huge painted paper fan flanked by women with fans, Asian and Spanish and Moorish and whatever. Still haven't figured our where to hang the Indian beauties since the Jill bedroom will have princesses and fairy tale characters in cross stitch on the walls. That is where my grandchildren (mostly the granddaughters) will sleep when they visit. There is still a very long -- and bare -- hallway to populate with pictures of family and friends and maybe the odd cross stitch pieces framed by me. I can handle assembling the frames and choosing the mats. After all, the $50 that went for my Middle Eastern lady was money well spent, and a whole lot cheaper than the often $200 or more I spent for framing other, and often larger, cross stitch pieces. Live and learn -- and, in my case, spend a little less to get wonderful results.

That is all. Disperse. Go stitch your own masterpiece -- and don't forget the backstitching.

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