Fabric Display Ideas

Written by kim durant
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Fabric Display Ideas
Colourful prints call for a low-key display method. (Fabric image by cacheman from Fotolia.com)

Quilters, textile hobbyists, people who sew their own clothes and others accumulate massive stashes of fabric. Once your collection reaches a certain volume, it becomes difficult to visually enjoy the fabric you have. Whether you own a fabric store and need ideas for flaunting new merchandise or if you just want to showcase an antique batik sarong, creating a fabric display will help organise a fabric collection.

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Frame the fabric you wish to display if it is a small piece or if it is not sturdy enough to be hung from a Velcro fastener strip. The Textile Museum recommends framing textiles using a Plexiglas panel rather than glass because Plexiglas is lighter-weight and breaks much less easily, according to its "Guidelines for the Care of Textiles. Large pieces of fabric can be mounted on a wooden frame (called a strainer) that has a special mounting fabric stitched over it, the museum advises. "The textile is carefully sewn to the stretched fabric in such a way that will provide overall support to the textile," according to the museum. If the fabric you wish to display is a valuable antique, hire an expert to perform the framing or mounting procedure.

Fabric Display Ideas
The frame you choose can accentuate different properties of the fabric. (frame. finished gold frame image by L. Shat from Fotolia.com)

Embroidery Hoop Dots

Festoon a wall in your home or shop with embroidery hoop "polka dots," taking inspiration from an ApartmentTherapy.com article about easy fabric art. (Don't do this display method with fragile or antique fabrics.) Acquire a selection of embroidery or quilting hoops in various sizes, some large, some small. Cut squares of the fabric you wish to display with sides a few inches larger than the diameter of each hoop. Stretch the fabric squares in each hoop and tighten the screw so the fabric is secured. Trim the overhanging fabric edges or just tuck them behind the hoop, out of sight. Hang the "dots" in an irregular pattern all over one wall for a fun display reminiscent of a skirt from the 1950s.

Fabric Display Ideas
Paint the hoop to complement or blend in with the fabric. (embroidery image by 26kot from Fotolia.com)

Furniture Accent

Accent a piece of furniture with the fabric. Like the dots, this method is unsuitable for valuable or fragile fabrics. Choose furniture that is out of direct sunlight to avoid fabric fading. Some furniture pieces you could accent with a fancy piece of fabric include bookshelves (hang fabric panels behind the books, creating a sort of backsplash) or even--borrowing an idea from an ApartmentTherapy.com article--your kitchen cabinets.

Fabric Display Ideas
Drape little-used side tables with your favourite fabric. (cafe tables image by Tom Davison from Fotolia.com)

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