Unframing the sampler
1. Lay the framed sampler face down
on a clean, padded surface, such as
a table covered with a mattress pad.
Remove paper or tape seals to expose
the backing board which may be either
wood or cardboard tacked into the
sides of the frame.
2. With a good pair of pliers, carefully
remove the nails or tacks from the
frame and discard. Carefully lift the
backboard and set aside. If there is no
significance to the backing board, it
can be discarded. If, however, there
are important framer's labels or other
historical information, save the backing
board to use in the reframing.
3. Remove the sampler from the frame.
If it has been laced to a cardboard backing,
cut each of the stitches and remove
them. Do not pull lengths of
thread through the old textile fabric as
the thread may cut the threads of the
4. Place the sampler face down on the
work surface and cover with a piece of
fiberglass or nylon window screen and
carefully hand vacuum on low speed to
remove dust and grime. Turn the sampler
face up and repeat the vacuuming
procedure. If any further cleaning is
deemed necessary, refer the piece to a
conservator for treatment. Wet cleaning
is not advised unless all of the embroidery
threads have been carefully
tested for fastness to water.
The sampler is now ready for mounting
Preparing the new mount
1. If there is some historical significance
to the frame and it is necessary
to reuse the frame, put a piece of 4 or
8-ply acid-free mat board 18" smaller
than each of the frame dimensions between
the sampler and the frame. If the
sampler is to be reframed with a face
mat, cut a piece of mat board of sufficient
size to leave a border of approximately
2" to either side and the top,
and 3" below the sampler.
Texas Historical Foundation. Texas Heritage, Winter 1985. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth45443/. Accessed May 26, 2015.