A life of stretcher bar manufacture
Your home is a death trap. Yes you heard me. A death trap. A death trap for taught canvas. There you are burning away dead dinosaurs in the depths of winter, making your houses akin to the surface of the sun, so you don't die of hypothermia, selfish. Then off you go to work, burn fewer dead dinosaurs and your home reverts to a semi Siberian environment.
All this time your stretched canvas sitting on your wall is silently seething. Silently cursing you under its woven canvas breath. Its stretcher bar arms in a constant flux of expand and contract. Its wooden wedged fingers slowly losing their grasp of the corners.
Then one day, one day. It has enough. No more can its fingers grip into the corners. No more can its once taught canvas skin parade the tattooed colourful picture of great aunt Doris giving a thumbs up on a skiing trip to the Alps circa 2014. Her face now a derpy grimace, somehow in testament to the conditions of the changing temperature in the room.
Saving derpy great aunt Doris
But fear not dear reader, there is help at hand. YOU can once again rejoice in the stretched canvas glory of your stretcher bar arms and once again hold the fingers of life in place in your holy canvas arm pits. YOU can see the light, dear reader, see the light of the shiny perfectly stretched canvas and all you need is the holiest of waters*, Thors mighty golden hammer**, The chemicals of an alchemist*** or the Wonder of the Wunderbar****. YOU my dear reader can save Doris. You can restore her derpy grimace back into the strained "just take the damn picture" grin she once held. YOU, yes YOU, dear reader can breathe life in what once was dead.
The holiest of canvas waters
Look, ok, I lied, you don't need a priest or anything. In fact all you need is a tap. As long as your tap dispenses water you're all good. Bless the water if you like. I'm not sure if it'll make any difference though, I've not tried it, but get some of the council pop in a spray bottle and get to work.
For a slight loosening of canvas. e.g where aunty Doris's face is only partially derpy, the water method should do the trick of restoring your canvas. Lightly spray the water onto the back of the canvas (the back with no print on it) to dampen it. Were not talking school swimming pool dunking here, just a light dampening. Within a few hours, or a few minutes, if you still insist on keeping your home like death valley, your derpy aunty Doris's grin should be back to normal. This'll work for most slack canvases.
Basically as the water dries it tightens up the weave in the canvas making it shrink. I'm not entirely sure why. I'm pretty sure it's just pure magic and that's the reasoning I go with.
Thors mighty golden hammer!
Did you know Isaac Newton was an alchemist - No, nor us
He really was, strange what you learn when doing a blog. Anyway, get your alchemy on if the water method or Thors Hammer don't succeed and whip yourself up a batch of chemicals. The most common stinky substance is the amusingly named "Tight n'up". Which, if your not of the canvas stretching persuasion seems like some gym equipment or this guy at tightnup.com.
You can buy it atDick Blick in the states. I've never used it but apparently works reasonably well. Reports are though that it stinks. So you may want to open a window if you're using it. Unless you like weird smells. I'm not judging here.
Spray it on the rear of the canvas, like with the water method and as it evaporates it locks in the chemical to the weave when its contracted. Stretching your canvas once more. Again, just see it as magic. It's easier to understand then. The only downside is you may be left with a canvas that smells. I'm sure Doris wont mind though. She has Wurthers Originals
*Holy water is available from all good deity outlets. See stockists for details
**Thors Golden Hammer may not be golden. Check with your local hammer supplier.
***Alchemy is probably forbidden in some countries. If your country has excessive amounts of gold you're probably fine
****Wunderbars do not come with capes. We keep them and run around the factory with them on. If you want a cape you're going to have to buy your own. We're not sharing. Available from all good super hero suppliers, and some bad ones too.