How To: Finish Back of Embroidery Hoop
I have gotten some questions regarding how I finish the back of my embroidery hoops. While there are many ways one can finish a hoop, this is my preferred method.
This hoop is from my Astrology Series where I play with the Zodiac star symbols and characters. Pictured is Virgo, my most recent hoop from that series.
Felt ( I prefer felt because it will never fray and is easy to glue)
Glue (I use Elmer's Glue-All because it adheres well to both the felt and wood frame)
Step One: Trim Away Fabric
First things first, we gotta remove some of that extra fabric. I usually eyeball this step. I trim away the excess fabric to about 1/2" from the hoop edge. This helps reduce bulk, and makes the raw edge easier to hide later.
Step Two: Baste Circumference
Now that we have that excess fabric trimmed away, it is time to baste around the outer edge to pull the raw edge towards the inside of the hoop. Start by loosely basting around the circumference of the hoop about 1/4" from hoop edge. After you are a few stitches in, start pulling your thread. By pulling the thread, you are gathering the excess fabric towards the inside of the hoop, and creating a taught finish on the front of the hoop. When you are all the away around, tie off. Your hoop should look like this:
Step Three: Glue and Wait
Now it is time to glue the frame of the hoop to the felt. Start by prepping your felt. I give mine a quick iron, and lay it next to my gluing station. Glue a generous amount around the circumference of the hoop. You mostly want the glue to catch the wood frame rather than your embroidery fabric. Felt soaks up glue like a sponge, so you want to make sure you have enough glue to adhere to the wood frame. Then with one confident motion, place your hoop onto the felt. I like to place a heavy book on top of my hoop to ensure a strong seal. Let dry for at least 2 hours.
Step Four: Trim Away Felt
Once your glue is dry it is time to trim away the felt. Using your least favorite pair of scissors, trim around the circumference of the hoop. You want to trim as closely as possible to hoop edge because you do not want bits of felt showing on the exterior. Since the felt wont fray, you do not have to worry about finishing off the edges.
Step Five: Display
There you have it! Nobody will ever know what the back of your embroidery looks like. Now all that is left is to display that hoop. My favorite part about this method is you can still hang it from the screw bracket on top of the hoop. The felt also absorbs light really well, so you do not have to worry about sunlight rendering your embroidery transparent. Do you have a preferred method of finishing embroidery hoops? Feel free to share below.