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Spring Tension Hoop

By October 17, 2008

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When I was learning how to Cross Stitch, I used a wooden embroidery hoop. One fateful day, I removed my hoop to find a horrible stain where it had been.
spring tension hoop
   Photo © Connie G. Barwick
The oils from my hands had transferred to the hoop as I handled it. From the hoop, the oils traveled to the fabric. The stain would not come out! For years, I avoided hoops.

When I found I needed a hoop for a detailed project, I tried plastic hoops, which are easier to clean than wooden hoops, and I still use them with some regularity.

My current favorite hoop is my 3 1/2 inch Westex spring tension hoop. I found it particularly useful when I was stitching the model of the Leaded Window back stitch pattern.

The first few times I used the spring tension hoop, I experienced a little difficulty getting the fabric to go in the hoop. If you find you have the same difficulty, use this step-by-step tutorial for putting fabric in a spring tension hoop for assistance. I suggest that when using any type of hoop, hold the hoop by the tension screw or clamp to prevent floss from catching on it as you stitch.


January 15, 2007 at 2:25 am
(1) Carey K. says:
January 15, 2007 at 7:22 am
(2) Connie G. Thomas says:

I really like my spring tension hoop for linen. It does not seem to crease the fabric as badly as other hoops. I am just really careful to take my fabric out when I am not stitching. If you are looking to purchase a STH – check your local needlecraft store.

October 8, 2007 at 12:44 am
(3) Philocrates says:

I purchased one and it makes quite a nice frame. For me, it was a lousy hoop. It did not hold the fabric properly. I had constant problems with slipping until I finally mounted the project on an old wooden one I had lying around because I couldn’t find the plastic ones. Instead of wasting the money I used it to frame a piece of cross stitch. It was a total loss in my case except it worked well for framing.

October 8, 2007 at 8:32 am
(4) Connie G. Thomas says:

I have not had problems with slipping, but it is a good idea to use the hoop as a frame.

October 8, 2007 at 10:40 am
(5) Philocrates says:

I don’t think it suits my style of stitching but it does make a GREAT frame. I used it for a “Ewe’s not fat. Ewe’s just fluffy.” Sheep pattern. It was the easiest thing to mount and decorate I have ever used. If I need a hoop for mounting again I think I will use the same thing. Plus I can match it to the colors of the room better.

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