Friday, May 30, 2008

Five Shape Of Stitches

There are several kind shape of stitches you can do and they are usually include in some of the pattern.

1. Half Stitch
The cross stitch is made up of two half stitches. Half stitches are also stitched individually in some Cross Stitch projects, used at times to create a sense of depth in a Cross Stitch pattern.

2. Cross Stitch
There 2 diagonal line or easily we describe the x shape.
  • For the start, bring up the needle from the back of fabric into the front.
  • Do the half stitch by put the needle into the hole diagonally (left or right) from the first hole the needle come up. You can complete the row of cross stitch by finish this half stitch first into the line / row base on your pattern.
  • Do the second half stitch (to the different way of diagonal from the first half stitch) to complete the x shape. If you do the row of cross stitch, so you must complete the second half stitch for that row too.
Note : you can also do single by single cross stitch to complete the row but it more easily if you do the row in half stitch first.

3. Quarter Stitch
The quarter stitch resembles a half stitch, but it is stitched into the center of the square of fabric.

4. Three Quarter Stitch
The three-quarter stitch is composed of a half stitch and a quarter stitch. Three-quarter stitches are used to create more detail in Cross Stitch designs.

5. Back Stitch
Back Stitch is used to make lines around cross stitch and to stitch letters and wording. Typically using black or a single color and basically there are two type of back stitch, line and dash.

Type Fabrics

1. Aida Fabric
It is very popular for cross stitch. This is a block weave fabric, with a hole at the corners of each block, which is nice and easy to work. Imagine that each block is represented by one square on the chart. Tiny holes in the fabric assist with stitch placement. Many colors of the fabric are available with fabric counts, or squares per inch, ranging from 11 to 18.
Characteristics of Aida Fabric: Aida Fabric is an evenweave or open weave fabric. Aida is woven in such a way that tiny uniformly-sized squares are formed.
Each square is the same width and height.
Aida is 100% cotton. The fabric is washable, durable, easy to care for, and sturdy enough to withstand repeated handling, particularly by new stitchers.
The grid on a Cross Stitch pattern corresponds to the grid on Aida fabric making it easy to determine stitch placement.

2. Linen
Linen is a specific type of evenweave fabric used for Cross Stitch Embroidery. The fabric has the same number of threads per linear inch horizontally and vertically.
Unlike Aida fabric, stitch placement is not as clearly defined on Linen fabric. A wide variety of fabric counts are available.
When stitching on linen, the term "over two" is often used. This refers to stitching over two threads in the weave of the fabric. Stitching "over one" creates a tiny cross stitch also often called a petite cross stitch.

3. Evenweave Fabric
Evenweave Fabric has the same number of threads or from left to right as from top to bottom. Linen is one type of evenweave fabric used for Cross Stitch.
Beginning Cross Stitchers usually choose to stitch on Aida fabric because groups of threads form squares that make stitch placement and counting easier. Aida fabric is an openweave or blockweave fabric which has the same number of thread groupings horizontally and vertically. The term Evenweave is sometimes used for all Cross Stitch fabrics.

4. Plastic Canvas
Plastic Canvas is a plastic mesh that resembles needlepoint canvas. Many types of needlecrafts use plastic canvas to create designs, including Cross Stitch. Plastic canvas is available in a wide variety of counts ranging from 7 squares per inch and up.
Why to Use Plastic Canvas :
1. Plastic canvas is durable,
2. Plastic canvas will not rip, fray or shrink.
3. Plastic canvas can be used to create 3-D projects.
4. Plastic canvas is a great medium for many Cross Stitch projects including bookmarks, cards, and ornaments.
Tips About Stitching on Plastic Canvas :
1. Use one fewer strand of floss when stitching on plastic canvas.
2. It may be helpful to use a smaller-sized tapestry needle when stitching on plastic canvas. The plastic canvas will not give like fabric will.
3. Let your needle dangle frequently to avoid knots and over-twisting of the floss.
4. Do not carry floss across blank areas of the plastic canvas.
5. Use the loop method to start stitches.

5. Perforated Paper
Perforated Paper is great for 3-D projects, bookmarks, ornaments, and pins because it is easy to cut into specific shapes. Perforated Paper is paper with a repeating pattern of holes in it that resembles Aida fabric usually found in 14 squares per inch.
Why to Use Perforated Paper: Perforated Paper is great for 3-D projects, bookmarks, ornaments, and pins because it is easy to cut into specific shapes.
How to Use Perforated Paper :
1. Start stitches with the loop method.
2. Do not use a hoop.
3. Do not pull stitches too tightly or you may accidentally tear the paper.
4. If you accidentally tear the fabric, use a small piece of tape on the back of the fabric to patch the fabric.
5. Avoid patterns with fractional stitches.

6. Gingham fabric
Gingham fabric is used for Chicken Scratch embroidery, but the squares of gingham fabric also make it an ideal ground fabric for small Cross Stitch projects. Note that on some fabric the fabric blocks may not be perfectly square, so the design may be slightly distorted.
Fabrics reminiscent of India with a British colonial twist are included in this collection. Influenced by far-away travel, the colors of the spice markets, middle Eastern textiles and safari fashions, these classic motifs will find fitting application in traditional, sophisticated homes. They achieve inspiration from high-end fashion accessories, needlepoint and exotic locales, and come in spring-clean and rich jewel tone color palettes.

7. Waste Canvas
Waste canvas is a grid that is held together with a water soluble glue. Waste canvas resembles the canvas used for needlepoint. It is available in various fabric counts, typically 8.5, 10, 14, and 18 squares per inch. A blue thread is often woven every 10 stitches to help with counting. This gridded canvas is called waste canvas because the fibers are temporary and are pulled out after the stitched design is complete.
Why to Use Waste Canvas: Waste canvas is used to stitch on non-evenweave fabric. Stitchers use it to aid in stitching on clothing, tote bags, quilts, and other non-evenweave material. The grid guides stitch placement. After a design is completed, the grid is moistened and removed, leaving the finished design in place.
How to Use Waste Canvas:
1. The canvas should be cut slightly larger than the finished design size of the design to be stitched.
2. Mark the center of the waste canvas with a small piece of floss or a permanent marker.
3. Attach the waste canvas by basting it onto the pre-washed fabric.
4. Stitch the design.
5. When the design is complete, remove the basting. Moisten the waste canvas grid and remove it, pulling each strand with tweezers or by hand.

This information source I adopted from

Monday, May 26, 2008

1...2...3... Of The Cross Stitch

Prepare the tool
There are some tools and a pattern you need to prepare to do the cross stitch. The important tools is fabric, needle, thread or floss, the other such as scissor and hoop is for complement. You must provide the size of the fabric that fit into or more wide than your image or graphic size.

1... Start the cross stitch
You can start from the center of the graph or from anypart you like. But by doing from the center it is more right, to keep some space at the outside of the graph at fabric. To find the center you can see the arrows or a bold line. After that, find the center of your fabric. To find it, you can fold the fabric in half vertically and horizontally. Then pinch with your finger to make a small crease that will mark the center. Open the fold, and you can start the stitch from that crease point.

Which color of the thread you must take is by looking the sign at the pattern. Each sign describe the color of thread. You can use two strands or one strands. Ussually the pattern that you download or buy give you instruction how much strands you take.

2... Stitching
After get the color bring the threaded needle up from the back of the fabric, leaving short tail thread behind the fabric. You can keep the short tail from loose by hold the tail in back and clip or skid it behind with the first few stitches.

When the thread is almost end, clip the rest thread at the several stitches at the back of the fabric to end off. If you have a problem to end the thread, such as untidy and may show the thread through the fabric at the front, it is better to cut and fasten off your thread at the back of the needle work as normal, and start again at the new area of the design. This way can keep you from run out of the thread supplied in the cross stitch kit

You can continue from the start to end again using the same color or different. The number of stitches is same with the count of the square with the certain sign/code at the pattern

Sometimes a color will have only a few stitches and then "jump" to another area. Most of the time you should end off and start again, other times you can carry the thread along the back. Just jumping from area to area is easier than starting and stopping, but sometimes the thread will show through. This can be a problem if you jump a dark thread over an unstitched area of light fabric. In general, you can carry the thread to another area if the jump is short, the thread color is light, and you are jumping over a previously stitched area.

3... Finishing
When your stitching is complete, wash in cool water using a mild liquid detergent. Rinse well. Do not wring, but roll in a clean towel to absorb most of the water. While still damp, place face down on a terry towel. Place another cloth on top of the needlework and press lightly with a warm iron. Let dry. Then frame or finish as desired.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Cross Stitch Tools

Cross stitch is easy to learn and make. It is requires only a few supplies. Next are a few supplies that you need to prepare first :

Pattern : Choose the pattern or design you want to stitch. You can create your own pattern by using the software or by your own creation. More easily is by download or buy the pattern ^_^

Fabric : The fabric for cross stitch is evenweave so you can place your needle rightly or do the cross. Generally, besides it is made from fabric there also made from vinyl. You can sew the edges of the fabric to keep it neat.

Needle : For the cross stitch you must prepare the size 24 or 26 (size 26 is smaller than size 24). The needle has a blunt point and a large eye.

Floss : Floss is a cotton thread used for stitching. It has has 6 strands, but usually you will use only 2 strands at a time for stitching and 1 strand for backstitching. Or you can use more than 2 strands to adjust the between the kind of fabric and its floss. The most popular brand of the Floss is DMC.

Embroidery hoop : It is used to help you hold the fabric while do the cross stitch. After you finish the stitch remove the hoop. It is prevent to not leave the hoop marks on the fabric.

Scissors : Prepare a good quality scissors with sharp points.