Cross stitch patterns are available in thousands and thousands of designs. Not all cross stitch kits are sold with printed fabric. Some are sold with blank fabric plus a chart that shows the needle worker where to place each stitch.
This technique is called counted cross stitch. In a stamped cross stitch kit, a chart guide is stamped onto the fabric. This avoids the need to count stitches. You simply make pattern stitches on the fabric and match embroidery floss colours to the stamped fabric colours.
Look at the Printed Pattern
To begin, unfold the canvas fabric to look at the pattern. The kit may come complete with a tapestry need that’s blunter and longer than an ordinary sewing needle plus coloured embroidery floss.
If the kit did not include these items and you are a new cross stitcher, you will need to purchase them from cross stitch patterns Australia.
You may find a chart on the kit packaging that tells you the specific colours of floss you need to buy to create the design.
Thread Your Needle
Embroidery floss is typically sold in bundles comprised of six strands. Separate out the strands of each colour needed according to the instructions before you threat the needle. Many patterns require two strands.
Find the Center
Identify the pattern’s center by creasing and folding the fabric. Begin there, and stitch outward. Stitch an X from corner-to-corner in each coloured square if your fabric is printed. Match colours of floss used to colours stamped on the fabric. Don’t venture into white areas of the fabric. Stitch where colours are stamped on it.
Make Uniform Stitches
Note that every X is comprised of two stitches—one from the upper right to lower left corner and the other from upper left to lower right. Your completed design will look fuller and more expert if you maintain uniform stitches. For instance, make each stitch in the same manner, placing one stitch on top each time.
Anchor Embroidery Floss
Anchor ends of the embroidery floss by placing it beneath other stitches on the fabric back as you start and complete each group of strands. Instead of knotting the strands, work this way to preserve a flat, clean face of the finished craft.
Select Your Fabric
If you’re an experienced needle-worker, you can make intricate or simple designs on even-weave, linen, or Aida cloth. Determining the fabric count, or the number of threads per inch plus the stitch methods – over one or over two threads – and the design stitch count will determine the finished work size. Calculate the size of fabric needed to start the project if you’re an experienced needle-worker.
Calculate Thread Count
To begin, have a calculator on hand. To create a cross stitch, make a cross stitch pattern or use a cross stitch pattern you like. Know the fabric thread count. For instance, Aida is available in a range of thread counts, from 6-count to 18-count. Even-weaves and linens are typically sold in 28 or 32-count.
Determine the Design Height and Width
For many projects, even-weaves and linens are stitched over two separate threads. Start by dividing the thread count in half. For instance, a 28-count even-weave is stitched as a 14-count. Check the pattern for design count, or the stitch count of design height and width. If a design count isn’t provided on the pattern, it’s simple to determine it:
- Imagine that the design stitch count is 140 x 112 stitches.
- Divide each dimension (height and width) by thread count. Divide 140 x 14 to determine the 10-inch width. Determine the height by dividing 112 by 14 to know the height is 8 inches.
- The design will be 10 inches x 8 inches on the 14-count fabric.
- Calculate the allowance of space surrounding the design. You want a margin for the design and enough space to complete the project. If you plan to frame the design, save about one inch (or more) to lace fabric on a mount board.
For example, if you want a four-inch allowance, double the amount (8 inches) and add to the design size. This means your fabric size in 18 x 16 inches.