Cross-stitch basics

Hi peeps! I hope that you are well.

Here is my latest craft blog post.

Recently, I dug out a cross-stitch that I started at least 10 years ago. It has been a lot longer than that, but I can’t exactly remember when I started it! I did three quarters of it, I stitched the main character and the background and started the outline but then I stopped for whatever reason. I wish that I’d had completed it at the time, as now it’s gone a brown colour, plus, I used distilled vinegar to try and get rid of a rust stain from the needle but now it has an awful brown stain on my fabric! If anyone knows how to get rid of this, I’d appreciate it! I have tried washing powder, washing up liquid and bleach but it’s made no difference. ☹

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Back to cross-stitch! I started out with a small, counted cross-stitch kit of Peter Rabbit, why I chose him I’m not sure as I’ve never read the book, lol. He is cute, apart from this stain I mentioned above. It’s important to make all the stitches lie the same way as the work can look untidy, and even bulky in parts, if not.

If you wanted to give it a go, it costs very little to get started and it’s extremely rewarding and can be relaxing, providing everything is going to plan. All you need is a loosely woven fabric, such as, Aida – this is what I use, and it’s the usual fabric for counted cross-stitch patterns. It is ideal for beginners as you can see exactly where the stitches go. Other fabrics can be used for counted cross-stitch, such as: canvas, linda or binca, and hardanger.

You will also need some threads, there are two kinds, stranded and twisted. The stranded cotton has usually six individual strands that can be separated so you can use the specified amount, or the twisted threads which cannot.

The last thing is the needle. There are several types of needles used and using the correct one for the type of fabric you are using will make all the difference. There are several kinds of needles used for sewing, Tapestry needles, that I mainly use for knitting but can be used on cross stitch. Crewel needles are like a Tapestry needle but have a sharper point. These are the most common types to use. I use a regular sewing needle as they are both sharp and small enough to go through the holes effortlessly. There are, of course, other needle types but these are the most commonly used ones for cross-stitch.

I have a few embroidery books and when I went on holiday, I found a great cross-stitch book that I discovered in a second-hand bookstore called ‘the cross-stitch collection, published by Marshall Cavendish,’ which I highly recommend as a beginner book. It not only has several cross-stitch patterns inside and it has everything you need to know to get you started.

Pinterest has lots of craft ideas too and this is what I use for inspiration! 😊

Thanks for reading my post, feel free to share!

Sarah.

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