Marriage is often described as compromise, but why not collaboration? Our husband and wife collaborations of needlepoint and woodworking allow us to labor quite easily together without getting into one an other's hair. In this eighth collaboration it was necessary to turn the typical flat 2” cherry molding sideways in order to keep the overall frame size down due to location space constraints. In order to add interest to the perimeter two 1/4” square black walnut strips were embedded into the cherry. If any future refinisher wants to sand down this frame they will certainly never go through such so-to-speak veneer:
We are currently using a somewhat unconventional method of matting needlepoint. Our first collaboration, however, was mounted in the typical fashion of stretching the needlepoint canvas over a masonite board with heavy thread. Frankly we found this very difficult and required extreme care not to distort the canvas. Since then we have developed this cheating method which is much easier:
- A sheet of thin cotton batting is attached to a piece of mat board, the same dimensions as the exterior of the cut mat board, using spray adhesive.
- The canvas is then “stretched” flat over the cotton batting using one's palms. Interestingly the cotton acts as a type of weak Velcro and adheres to the canvas keeping it in position. Also the white color is an excellent background for visible holes in the canvas. Furthermore the thickness of the batting (about 1/8") prevents knots behind the canvas from telegraphing to the front.
- Lastly a couple of continuous strips of double-stick tape are attached to all sides of the back of the cut mat which is then placed carefully in position, centering the art piece exactly in the cut hole.
In none of our pieces using this method has the needlepoint slipped out of place or sagged. No promises, though, as to how long this will last. Stretching with thread is still probably better.
I continue to be impressed by the enormous number of hours stitching a piece such as this still life demands. All things considered the extra detail inlaying black walnut into the frame may have raised the proportion of my work for one of these collaborations from the usual 2% to maybe 3%.
Notes: As usual the mat was expertly cut at Sarnoff Art Supplies & Framing in Tucson. The glass was removed for the purpose of photography without reflections. The frame is finished with multiple coats of Waterlox Sealer Finish.
Singular wooden ware + hand carved teaspoons at: FlyingCircusStudios.Etsy.com