If you're stitching a project over several weeks or months, the fabric edges can get tatty and frayed. Here's a simple guide to help prevent this happening to your stitching.
1. The quickest and easiest way to seal your fabric edges is with masking tape. Simply measure and cut a length of masking tape for each side, and fold it carefully over the edges of your fabric. The sticky substance on masking tape can sometimes stain fabric, so always remember to leave enough material around the actual stitched design. This way, any marks can be trimmed off later or obscured by a frame.
2. Hemming your fabric is a really effective way to keep it neat and intact. Fold your fabric over by approximately 2cm (¾in) on each side, and press it carefully with a warm iron. Then, using a brightly coloured, strong thread (doubled over if necessary), stitch around the edge using simple running stitch, finishing your thread off securely at the end.
3. If you've chosen to stitch a smaller project, the best way to keep the edges of the fabric in good condition is to pop your stitching in a hoop. Not only will it help you to create even stitches, it'll also help to take the pressure off the edges of your fabric, discouraging you from touching them as you work.