Friday, March 23, 2007

Monster scroll frame

So, the challenge was, how could I get a scroll frame big enough for my fabric for St Petersburg? 411 stitches is almost 30 inches on 28 count fabric, and then you've got to add on at least 3 inches around the edges!

I know it's possible to buy frames of 40 inches and more, but I haven't seen any online in the UK and it just didn't seem worth buying that sort of thing from overseas. After seeing a post on a message board, I decided to make one myself.

At home I have a table/lap frame (an ebay win) which I didn't really use as the frame part of it hasn't been a good enough size for the pieces I've been working on recently. If I could make myself some long scroll rods for it, then it would be perfect to use for St Pete.

So, first I checked the diameter of the rods currently in the frame (19mm) to work out roughly what I'm after. Then off to my nearest B&Q where I bought a 2.4 metre long piece of 18mm pine doweling.

On the way home from B&Q, I popped into Dunelm and bought 3m of 1 inch curtain header type of tape.

On the living room floor, I measured the rod and marked the middle. Next, out to the garden and a rummage in the garage (with advice from husband) to find a small saw and cut the dowel into two pieces.

Back inside again, I dug out a box of coloured drawing pins, cut the curtain tape into convenient sized lengths, fastened the tape to the rods with the drawing pins. Hammer required I realised after my thumbs got rather sore pressing the drawing pins into the first rod!

Things were looking good and I was starting to get excited!

Out with the sides and legs of the frame. I'd suspected that the rods might be slightly loose fitting in the frame, and I was right. They were so loose, they wouldn't stay in! So, out with the masking tape and a few layers round the ends of the rods had them fitting perfectly!

Finally, out with St Pete and some thread and I stitched the fabric to the curtain tape.

What do you think of the end result? Personally, I'm dead chuffed! And I can't believe I have a scroll frame almost as big as my couch! Oh, and St Pete now has significantly more stitching on it than in the picture!


Lynn said...

wow that's an amazing piece of work. I can't believe how big it is lol. Looking forward to seeing the stitching coming on now ... well done :)

Meg said...

Oh, I *love* this! I would never have thought of curtain-rod scrolls!!

I purchased a scroll from a needlework supplier in my home state (NH), and am still waiting for it to come. Grrrr. Wish I'd seen your solution first! However, what I really can't wait to see is your progress on this cross-stitch.

Trish said...

That's one big scroll rod. I'm working on White Nights as well, just using a Q-Snap so all the beads will require a 13th month LOL. Does your scroll rod keep the fabric tight? or do you like to work on it loosely? I loved all your other projects as well and your thoughts on how to kit these Chatelaines. I ordered the whole kit for White Nights from European Cross Stitch (minus the fabric) as I didn't have any silks at all and really wanted to try them. I may never go back to cotton - YIKES. Good luck and cheers, Trish

cathymk said...

It's huge!!! I love the different coloured pins in the curtain tape - adds a festive touch!!

Julie said...

what a clever girl you are, and at a fraction of the cost too

well done, looking forward to watching your stitching grow as well !!

The Cabbage Rose said...

Perfect mother of invention! I love it!! Just goes to show stitchers will go to any extreme to get things done! You're amazing.
Deb in FL
PS: I'm just happy to be stitching with Q-snaps right now!!

Gina said...

Oh well done!! I didn't have that kind of inventive mind so I bought mine from Siesta. My DH did have to do some inventive carpentry work on the stretcher bars so I could clamp them in my Lowery, though.
Mind you, no one can sit on the sofa while I am stitching!!
I have decided to stitch with the fabric quite loose, as I have observed that Chatelaines can be pulled out of square if the fabric is too tight. Mind you, it's just as well as I can't get a really tight tension on these huge scrolls!!