How to Use a Q Snap Frame

Written by dawn gibbs
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A Q-Snap frame is a plastic frame that holds needlework or quilting projects. The frame holds the fabric taught, making it easier to place your needle in the proper position while stitching. The Q-Snap frame is easy to assemble and to adjust. The product comes in several sizes.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Waxed paper

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  1. 1

    Locate the four pieces that create the base of the frame. You will have two long pieces of pipe and two shorter side pieces for rectangular frames, or four pieces the same length for square models. Locate the four "L" shaped joint pieces that hold the frame base together.

  2. 2

    Hold the first "L" joint in your left hand. Assemble a rectangular frame by inserting a long pipe piece horizontally into the base of the "L" joint and inserting a side piece into the top of the "L" joint.

  3. 3

    Hold a second "L" joint in your right hand so that it looks like a backwards "L." Insert the other end of the long pipe piece horizontally into the base of the joint. Insert the second short side piece into the top of the joint. Your frame should now have a bottom and two sides.

  4. 4

    Attach the remaining two "L" joints to the top of the side pieces. Insert the last long pipe piece horizontally into the top of the "L" joints. You now have a complete frame. If your frame is a square, follow the assembly instructions but insert any pipe piece into each end of the "L" joints until the frame is complete.

  5. 5

    Lay your fabric over the frame, so the part you are working on is centred. Locate your fabric covers. These are shaped like a half pipe, and will fit snugly on the base pieces. You will have two long pieces and two short pieces for rectangular frames, or four pieces of equal length. Snap the first long fabric cover over the fabric on the top pipe piece of the frame.

  6. 6

    Snap the second long fabric cover over the bottom of the frame, so that it holds the fabric in place. Rotate the top fabric cover up, and rotate the bottom fabric cover down to pull the fabric taught. Snap the two side fabric covers in place over the fabric, and rotate each of them out. The fabric is now taught in all directions and you are ready to sew.

    Holding and Adjusting the Frame

  1. 1

    Hold the frame in your lap, grasping the side with one hand. Use your other hand to work the needle up and down through the fabric. For larger projects, purchase a lap frame that comes with four legs. This creates a tabletop frame so you have both hands free.

  2. 2

    Unsnap the fabric covers if you want to adjust the fabric or move it. Move the fabric to the spot you want to stitch, then replace the fabric covers.

  3. 3

    Rotate the fabric covers out to tighten the fabric.

  4. 4

    Place a sheet of waxed paper between the fabric cover and the fabric to protect your stitches from being crushed by the cover edges. For quilting projects, this is not a concern, but for intricate needlework it is necessary.

Tips and warnings

  • You can purchase Q-Snap frame stands that hold the larger frame models. The assembly for those stands vary with the model you get.

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