This project has taken a long time, with lots of stops and starts:
A year or two back Mum gave me two doilies she and her sister embroidered as teenagers. She was 14 and my aunt 16. Not being a doily using sort of person, I decided to frame them, but spent a long time hunting for the right frames. Because the orientation of the pattern on the doilies is different they looked strange together, so I wanted separate frames, but I couldn’t find rectangular frames in proportions that looked right. Circular frames would be better, but there didn’t seem to be any of those available.
Eventually I hit on the idea of using embroidery hoops. I was going to sacrifice my own hoop, that I’ve had since I was a child, but once I saw how crappy the ones in Lincraft were I decided to buy two of those and keep my old one in case I needed to embroider something – something I’m glad I did now the stitching bug has bitten me.
Then lots of time passed with me trying to work out how to turn the hoops into frames. Simply stitching them onto cloth and stretching it over the hoops would have been easiest, but I wanted to put the doilies behind glass.
I found some pre-cut particle board circles close to the right size and I got the local glass shop to cut glass to match. Then I sewed the doilies to some calico and stitched that to the particle board. After bit of stain and varnish the hoops looked pretty good.
The hard part was finding a way to keep the glass and embroidery fixed inside the frames. I tried bending brass wall hooks into L-shapes, but couldn’t find nails or screws small enough for the frame. I wound up holding the glass in by hammering nails into the inside of inner circle and cutting off the heads, then using tacks on the back to hold the boards in.
I thought this project was going to drive me crazy a few times but, as always, it was just a matter of waiting for the perfectly simple solution to come along.