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Wednesday, January 12, 2011

It's cold, Jenny Bean update and bad framing

Hello!

As my dear hubby would say, it's colder than a witches tit in an iron bra out there today! Personally I would think that anyone's tit in an iron bra would be just as cold but apparently not!

I heard on the news last night that there is now snow in 49 of 50 states. Quite an accomplishment for ol' mother nature! But enough is enough Mom and it's time to loosen your grip and let some warm air in to melt all this stuff away!! At least around here we are not dealing with the ice that those in the south are dealing with. I hope it warms up there soon or my friend Debi and her dogs are going to be awfully hungry. She said this morning she only has 2 more days of doggy food left.

We took Amy back to school on Sunday morning so we could avoid all the weather that was headed our way. We timed it pretty well, as we were leaving Lincoln it started snowing there pretty good but we drove out of it and had clear roads most of the way home. Amy is mad cuz they canceled school Monday and Tuesday and she doesn't have classes on Wednesdays. She could have stayed home in her nice comfortable bed for 2 more days!

Yesterday while at work, I had to take apart a cross stitch picture that was brought in on Saturday. The picture had been professionally framed at Ben Franklins at least 10 years ago and the frame was coming apart. Our customer wanted to know if I could fix the frame for her. I explained to her that the frame was falling apart because it was not a hefty enough frame for the size of the piece. I could certainly glue it back together but the same thing was going to happen again.


She decided to choose a new slightly larger frame instead. Knowing my customer the way I do, I know that she wants her stitching framed in a manner that will preserve them for as long as possible so I then pointed out to her that the matting on the piece was not acid free.

Orange/brown bevels = acid mats. She was horrified that the mats were acid. Why would her old framer use acid mats she wondered? Now I happen to know who the old framer was. I'm told she was a very nice woman and everyone always says what a wonderful job she did with her framing. I'm not trying to diss her in any way. But I have re-framed quite a few pieces that she had framed and none of them were framed with conservation in mind. If it's a throw away piece it's not such a big deal but on an heirloom piece it can ruin it. Part of the issue might be that in her day, acid free was not generally thought to be important, it was more expensive and fewer people were really interested in conservation framing. What ever the reason, I thought my customer would want to know. The decision was made to re-mat the piece. Knowing from past experience what I might find when I opened up the old frame, I brought my camera to the shop yesterday so I could document what I found. I was shocked and surprised when I opened up the back and found what I did though. Masking tape on the cross stitch fabric...


mats taped to the front of the stitching...


rusty pins and of course acid foam core. The foam core I expected. The faded mats I expected too as there was not conservation glass used.

The masking tape and mats taped to the front of the piece I did not. There is some damage where the masking tape was and a bit of discoloration where the tape was holding the mats to the piece but the new mats will cover that up.

I'll cut the damage from the masking tape off so the acid cannot leach any further into the fabric and it should be good to go after that. So all this is just to say...if you had something framed 10 or more years ago that you wish to keep around for a while, it might be in your best interests to have it checked out to be sure that everything was done with conservation in mind. Check your mat bevels to see if they are discolored as that is the first clue that there might be a problem. We'll now return you to your regularly scheduled programming...

I'm coming right along on Jenny. Still trying to decide if I like the burgundy chimney. I think so but I'm reserving judgement until I get further along. I've changed a couple of other things as long as I am at it. The door is supposed to be mustard seed and I just wasn't digging it so I changed it to Toasted Barley and the little hanging fruit things were supposed to be caramel corn but I changed them to Grape Arbor. So...what do you think?

I've managed to waste most of my morning off playing Zuma Blitz and chatting with friends on facebook so I better finish this and go do something productive with my day. Not sure what that might be but I'm thinking huddling under a blanket while stitching sounds like a good idea! Maybe I'll put a pot of soup on for supper while I'm at it. Or not. We'll have to see. Thanks for stopping in and commenting!

Take care till next time!

Julie

14 comments:

Mary said...

Thanks for your information on framing. I took two of my Mother's bargello pieces to be re-framed and when they were taken apart they had been stapled right alongside the stitching and the staples had rusted. You really do have to make sure the person doing the framing is doing it properly.

Cath said...

Loving your progress , and thanks for the tips .
Had to snigger about your hubby's comment . x

Beth said...

Good tutorial on framing - you often "get what you pay for" - it does help to be educated on what to ask for as well - acid free, etc. Jenny Beans is looking great!

Sarah said...

I've found that the Ben Franklins in the town I grew up used a lot of double sided tape to tape right over some of my stitching to the mat. Yikes! It took me years to find a product that would remove the leftover sticky! Now I frame myself. At least that way I can't blame anyone else!

Cari said...

Thanks for all the info on framing. It was quite interesting. Amazing what 'used' to be done to our work. And your Jenny Bean is beautiful. I vote for snuggling in for a good day of STITCH !! Hugs

valerie said...

So sad to see needlework treated badly. It really is worth paying the extra money to be sure it's done correctly. Your Jenny Bean is looking great!

Love to Stitch said...

You know, years and years ago, there wasnt much stress on archival materials, and we were all told that even that sticky board was a great tool. Now, we wouldnt dare use that stuff. You definately get what you pay for now, and better to trust your framer, and know what you are getting.

Great progress on Jenny-- it is a great one....... someday!!!!!!!

Chris said...

Jenny looks great!

Sally said...

Loving your progress on Jenny!

Carol said...

I really enjoyed reading your information on what to watch for when framing a piece of needlework--very helpful!

And your Jenny Bean is looking lovely :)

Siobhan said...

I'm a firm believer that you get what you pay for with framing--and that you need to take it to a place that specializes in needlework. Of course, your customer did that in good faith and it didn't work out fr her. My DH always says I should take stuff to be framed here, but my SIL did that and had one piece cut too small to be framed (that the shop cut her needlework just horrified me) and another piece she found out had been glued. I haven't been able to bring myself to trust anybody here after I heard that.

Your Jenny Bean looks GREAT!!

My Dh always says 'colder than a witch's tit' but I've never heard the 'in an iron bra' before--very good! He's also fond of "it would freeze the balls off a brass monkey". LOL

Lee said...

You've given me a lot to think about! I had most of my pieces framed when it was just DH and I and no children. Once the kids came along and I stopped working, I also stopped framing. Consequently, most of my framed pieces are about 20 years old. And since I mean to pass them on, I think I'm going to take a close look at them now.

Thanks for the great insight.

Anonymous said...

I'm a prefessional framer/ nw mounter, too, and I've also seen it all. I regularly see pieces come in that were framed before conservation materials were widely used, available or accepted, and before UV protectant glazing was commonplace. I've been doing this since the mid 80's, and it's amazing how many framers still don't use conservation materials, how many customers don't think those materials are necessary, and how many times a day I educate about this very issue. Needlework framing is NOT the same as paper art framing, and not all framers should be mounting needlework... Happy framing and even happier stitching!!!

Peggy H. said...

I stretch and frame myself anymore. I got so tired of what the framers would do, poor stretching, nonconservation, etc. Besides, you can do it for much, much cheaper.

I think I will do a tutorial on my blog soon.

Peggy H.
www.neverenoughstash.blogspot.com