A problem solved

Progress on the second (or 8th) panel of the antependium has been slow due to technical difficulties.

As some of you may remember, Gareth had to extend my embroidery frame for this piece. The original floor standing frame was about 28 inches wide, which wasn’t even near as wide as the antependium – of course, I could have made a smaller version, but due to the unforeseen level of detail I’m glad I didn’t, or I did consider making it in sections.

However, in the end, gareth made new stretchers to extend the frame to about four feet, but this led to another problem – the frame bowed at the centre when under tension. This meant that although I had no problems with the first panel, which lies at the edge, I couldn’t maintain enough tension in the middle to avoid the canvas wrinkling. I was worried this was going to distort the finished piece, but wasn’t quite sure what to do about it, having never worked with such a massive frame before.

I did try to work on it, but ended up having to stretch the canvas with my left hand whilst sewing with my right, which slowed me considerably as I would usually engage both hands with this technique.

It’s always worth whinging to gareth tho, as he often comes up with a solution. In this case we went into town and bought a woodworking clamp for less than a fiver. This was designed to pinch things together, but once we got it home, Gareth took it apart and reversed it, so that now it pushes things apart.

 As you can see, inserted in the right place its doing a fine job, and I can now sew easily.

There may well be a product specifically designed for this, but if there is I have never encountered it – it would be rare as I couldn’t even find  aframe this big to buy, and I certainly didn’t know where to start looking – and I suspect that if I’d found it it would have cost a lot more money. I think this is about perfect – it even has nice pads on the ends to stop it marking the fabric

I did think I would need two – one either side of the central panel – but one seems to work fine. Two might actually make it a bit too heavy.




~ by opusanglicanum on September 11, 2011.

6 Responses to “A problem solved”

  1. VERY clever!
    It does remind me a bit of EverTite frames and the way they fasten at the edges, with 2 screws at each corner.
    I don’t know how big your piece is, (I think it’s A LOT bigger) but just so you know for future reference in another project…..

    Evertite Slimline Stretcher Bar Pair – 26″

    Evertite XX Stretcher Bar for sizes greater than 26″ (up to 40″)

    A matching set of XX bars is needed to form a frame (so you will need to order a second pair of XX bars). For example, if your canvas is 32″ x 16″ you will need ESBXX-32 and ESBXX-16

    $priced when ordered
    (not forgetting you need 2 pairs of bars)

    • ah – then this was definately cheaper!

      the frame is about four foot wide, and the hieght varies according to how you wind the canvas on. I’ve never had a problem with bowing in the middle before – i think its just a result of using the wider bars

  2. Necessity is indeed the mother of invention, I wondered if a reversed clamp would work. I have a larger scroll frame and wondered if the tension would be enough to keep the fabric unwrinkled. Thanks to your, I know if ti doesn’t that this will work. I know they sell smaller varieties of these type of clamps so there are lots of possibilities. Great Idea

  3. Looks like Gareth has earned his keep. :=)

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