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Mounting Stretched Canvas

Because there is no mat or glass involved in framing stretched canvas, it is among the easiest items to frame. However, canvas stretched on stretcher bars is often thicker than the depth of the frame you’re putting it into. Although so called canvas frames exist, they are limited in variety and availability, so many framers end up using regular frames for stretched canvas. The trick is holding the canvas in. Generally, framing components are secured in the frame by inserting a point or brad into the side of the frame recess, but if you can’t get at the recess, this becomes difficult. There are three methods that exist to get you around this problem. Option One: Canvas clips are brackets that fit over the backs of stretcher bars and wedge into the space between the stretcher bar and frame recess, securing them (Figure Y‑1). Option Two: Offset clips have two right-angle bends forming off-setting flat ends between a vertical upright. One of the flat ends is screwed into the back of the frame while the other end overlaps the stretcher bar, holding it in (Figure Y‑2). Option Three: A screweye or a multipoint set into the back of the frame provides a loop through which a regular screw can be inserted into the side of the stretcher bar, securing it (Figure Y‑3).


Figure Y-1: Canvas clips wedge into the space between the stretcher bar and the rabbet.


Figure Y-2: Offset clips have two right angle bends forming offsetting flat ends between a vertical upright.


Figure Y-3: A screweye set into the back of the frame provides a loop through which a regular screw can be insert