How to frame embroidery without hoop

You find yourself in a hilarious embroidery predicament – you've just finished a stunning embroidery masterpiece, but there's one problem: you don't have an embroidery hoop to frame it! Panic sets in, and you start searching frantically around the house for any alternative framing options.

In a moment of desperation, you consider using a frying pan as a makeshift hoop. You hold the embroidery tightly against the pan's edge, hoping it will stay in place. But the slippery fabric slides off, and you're left with a comical sight – a frying pan adorned with a beautifully stitched design.

Undeterred, you move on to the next unconventional framing idea – a hula hoop. It seems like a brilliant solution until you realize that the hula hoop is way too big for your tiny embroidery. You stand there, feeling like you're performing an absurd hula dance with the hoop swaying awkwardly around your waist.

Finally, you spot a stack of pizza boxes in

the corner of the room. Eureka! A lightbulb goes off in your head. With scissors and tape in hand, you meticulously cut and assemble a makeshift frame from the pizza boxes. You carefully secure the embroidery within the box frame, feeling like a DIY master.

As you proudly display your framed embroidery, a friend drops by unexpectedly. Their puzzled expression says it all. "Did you frame your embroidery in a pizza box?" they ask, trying to suppress a laugh. You nod with a mix of embarrassment and amusement, realizing how absurdly resourceful you've become.

To make matters worse (or funnier), your mischievous pet decides the pizza box frame is the perfect toy! They pounce on it, knocking it over and sending the embroidery flying. You find yourself in a slapstick chase, trying to retrieve your beloved creation from your playful furry companion.

Defeated but laughing, you decide it's time to get creative and resourceful in a more practical way. You head to the craft store, determined to find alternative frames for your embroidery. As you browse through the aisles, you can't help but chuckle at the thought of using everyday household items as makeshift frames.

Finally, you find a beautiful wooden picture frame that's just the right size for your embroidery. As you carefully place the stitched masterpiece into the frame, you can't help but feel a sense of relief and accomplishment. "No more pizza boxes or frying pans," you declare triumphantly.

With your embroidery framed professionally, you proudly display it on your wall, where it rightfully belongs. And as you glance at your once-hilarious attempts at unconventional framing, you can't help but smile at the memories of your DIY misadventures.

From pizza boxes to hula hoops, you've learned that creativity knows no bounds. But for now, you'll stick to more traditional framing methods, leaving the unconventional frames to the realm of funny anecdotes and crafting legends. Happy framing!


Embroidery is a timeless and cherished art form that deserves to be showcased and preserved. While embroidery hoops are commonly used to frame and hold fabric taut during stitching, they are not the only option for displaying your beautiful creations. If you find yourself without a hoop or prefer alternative framing methods, fear not! In this article, we will explore creative ways to frame embroidery without using a hoop, allowing you to showcase your needlework in unique and personalized styles.

Mounting on Cardstock or Matboard

One of the simplest and most cost-effective ways to frame embroidery is by mounting it on cardstock or matboard. Choose a cardstock or matboard color that complements your embroidery design. Trim the cardstock or matboard to your desired size, leaving a border around the embroidery.

Secure the fabric to the cardstock or matboard with acid-free tape or adhesive, being careful not to damage the delicate embroidery. This method not only provides a clean and professional look but also offers added protection to your embroidery by preventing dust and dirt from settling on the fabric.

Frame in a Shadow Box

Shadow boxes are versatile and attractive display options for various crafts, including embroidery. These deep frames allow you to showcase your embroidery with added depth and dimension. Place the embroidery inside the shadow box, ensuring it is centered and neatly arranged.

You can also get creative with the background by adding fabric or decorative paper that complements the colors and theme of your embroidery. Secure the fabric to the backing of the shadow box with acid-free tape or pins. Close the shadow box, and your embroidery will be beautifully framed and ready for display.

Use a Wooden Picture Frame

If you prefer a more traditional approach, a wooden picture frame can beautifully showcase your embroidery. Look for a frame that matches the size of your embroidery or, if necessary, have a custom frame made to ensure a perfect fit.

To frame the embroidery without a hoop, stretch the fabric carefully and evenly across the backing of the frame, securing it with acid-free tape or staples. For added protection, consider using a piece of acid-free matting between the embroidery and the frame's glass.

Embroidery Hoop Alternative - Stretching on a Canvas

If you enjoy the look of embroidery hoops but don't have one on hand, you can create a similar effect by stretching the fabric on a canvas. Choose a blank canvas that matches the size of your embroidery or cut the canvas to your desired dimensions.

Lay the canvas on a flat surface, and position the fabric over it, ensuring the embroidery is centered and straight. Begin stretching the fabric tightly around the canvas, and secure it to the back with staples or strong adhesive.

The stretched canvas not only gives your embroidery a unique and contemporary look but also adds a three-dimensional element to your display.

Create an Embroidery Wall Collage

If you have multiple embroidery pieces or smaller designs that don't require a full frame, consider creating an embroidery wall collage. This allows you to group various embroideries together to create an eye-catching and visually appealing display.

You can mount the embroideries on cardstock, matboard, or fabric and arrange them in a collage style on a larger piece of backing material. Experiment with different layouts until you find a design that best complements your embroidery collection.

Hang with Decorative Clips or Clothespins

For a casual and rustic display, consider using decorative clips or clothespins to hang your embroidery. Choose clips or clothespins that match the theme or style of your embroidery, whether it's a vintage, bohemian, or modern look.

Hang the embroidery by attaching the clips or clothespins to the top edge of the fabric and securing it to a string or a piece of twine. Then, hang the twine on a wall hook or nail. This method not only showcases your embroidery but also adds a touch of charm and personality to your space.

Framed Embroidery Collage

Create a unique framed embroidery collage by combining different embroideries in one large frame. You can mount the embroideries on cardstock or matboard and arrange them creatively within the frame, leaving equal spacing between each piece.

A framed embroidery collage offers a captivating visual display, allowing you to showcase multiple embroidery designs together, each with its own individual charm.


Embroidery is a beautiful and intricate art form that deserves to be displayed and admired. While embroidery hoops are a traditional and practical way to frame embroidery, there are plenty of creative alternatives available. From mounting on cardstock and framing in shadow boxes to stretching on canvas and creating embroidery wall collages, you have a multitude of options to showcase your embroidery without using a hoop.

Remember to choose framing methods that complement the theme, colors, and style of your embroidery, ensuring that your needlework stands out as the stunning work of art it truly is. So, go ahead and let your creativity shine as you explore the wonderful world of embroidery framing without a hoop!

Annabel Buser