A great frame for fiber art—whether you embroider, quilt, or hook—can be a game changer. It holds your fabric in place, essentially setting the conditions for your workflow and helping you to achieve a more professional finish. Think of a frame as an additional pair of hands. Available in all kinds of sizes, shapes, materials, and price points, frames can be subjective, and you might even want to purchase several to get a feel of different supports.
1. Lacis Tambour Round Frame
This frame offers a sturdy base made of hardwood that can accommodate any 10-inch hoop for hands-free support. Easy to assemble, it features knobs that allow you to rotate the hoop so you can check the back of your handiwork in an instant. It’s also well made, with smooth-moving joints and sturdy clamps to properly hold your hoop. The finished frame can be placed on a table or cradled in your lap depending on your preference.
2. Frank A. Edmunds Adjustable Lap & Table Stand
This hardwood frame, which can be placed on any surface, is adjustable and one of the best for larger artworks—it can fit projects up to 21 inches wide. Its scroll frame keeps fabric taut as you work, and its angled position means you won’t be bending over your material and punishing your back. Choose from three different heights, depending on your preferred setup. Lightweight and easy to assemble, it’s also a highly portable frame.
3. Hilitand Plastic Clip Frame
These simple handheld frames aren’t super stylish, but they provide a perfectly utilitarian way to stabilize your work. Made of polypropylene, each features sizable edges that provide a comfortable grip for your nondominant hand, but the overall frame is still very lightweight. Clips on all four sides offer a fast way to clamp your fabric and maintain a decent level of tension without damaging your art.
4. Images Stitchery Design Doodler Stitch Frame
If you want a well-crafted and good-looking frame, consider this oak option. Designed for use in the lap, it can accommodate medium-sized stitching projects, with a working window of 10 inches from dowel to dowel. Preparation takes some time, as you have to stitch the top and bottom of your fabric to the included dowels, but the results maintain a consistent tension throughout, while keeping the work surface comfortably angled.
5. Dritz Plastic Quilting Hoop
If you love the traditional feel of a hoop, our pick is this high-quality one from Dritz. With a 14-inch diameter, it is suitable for embroidery or quilting, with durable plastic edges that stay rigid and lie flat. Unlike cheaper options, the two hoop components of Dritz’s product fit together like a puzzle, with the inner circle featuring a gap to accommodate a ridge that rings the outer circle. This smart design prevents the circles from popping out, while keeping your fabric extra tight.