Finishing and Framing Workshop with Beverly Mulcahy

IMG_1339Beverly joined us in April 2014 to demonstrate different finishing techniques that she has used over the years to finish hooked pieces.

Following will be a compilation of the tips I picked up during the presentation.

WhenIMG_1341 using a binding start by pre-sewing the binding at what will be the finished edged of your hooked piece. This allows you to hook right up to the binding.

Baste down the edges of your binding to hold out of way.IMG_1343

When done hooking flip over binding and hand sew down.IMG_1349

You can leave the binding plain or whip.

Beverly likes Cascade yarn for whipping as there is no pilling. Use single thickness. No cording required, but pay attention to the thickness of your finished edge.

She suggests that you mix yarn colors to work with a plaid background

Stretcher bar framing: 

IMG_1345Start by taking your finished rug to the store with you to get the correct sized frame pieces.

Cover the bars with wool. Wool piece lays across frame and wraps around the frame bars. Can sew or staple in place.

Then sew rug in place across the top of the frame and slightly around each top corner.  This maintains position and shape of rug as it hangs. Does not curl if sown only at the top like this.

Now cover back of frame with another piece of fabric cut to size. You can use a staple gun to attach this fabric.IMG_1347

Now you can place hanging hardware where desired. Screws go right through the wool.



Back the foundation with fabric if not completely hooking the pillow top/front. 

IMG_1350For a pillow with a wool border get it in place before you start hooking the pillow top.

Cut wool border strips to size being sure to extend beyond as shown in photos below. Sew longest sides in place first.

  IMG_1352 Fold back then sew top piece on. IMG_1353 Sew bottom on.


Fold all back and baste, as you would for a binding edge.

To finish you would sew your backing fabric to the finished pillow top right sides together. Leave an opening to turn through.


This technique works great for making mats.

IMG_1358Finishing round pieces has different issues. 

Whipping too tight causes the piece to buckle.

Using bias cut wool that is slightly felted is a nice finish choice, especially for round or oval pieces. Lightly felted wool cut on the bias will not unravel, so does not need to be finished.

To whip finish a round piece fold back, whip with single thickness (thread), then finish with the strip of wool. IMG_1359

If finishing without binding you want to baste the turned foundation in place. Turn 1/8 to 1/4  and hand sew. Then whip the edge.



Sometimes the expenses of having a piece professional framed is just worth it.







IMG_1356This unfinished Tote bag. The foundation has a sown edge and will be sown together to form the purse/tote. There is no binding.


Great finish for purses are the purchased metal purse kits.