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Sunday, February 3, 2008

Cross Stitch Kits

I found this article to be very interesting. I think that we've all had a tough time once in awhile deciding on what kind of kit to work on. This gives a brief description of all the different kinds that are sold in most craft stores. Let me know what you think.

If you go into a typical craft store, you will see the supplies for many types of crafts. For cross stitching, you will find thread, beads, fabric, patterns and kits. Looking at the cross stitch kits, you can see that there are several different types to choose from. Below, is a quick description of each type of kit and the main advantage and disadvantage for each one.

Counted Cross Stitch – Stitches are done on a piece of blank aida cloth. By using a pattern (also called a chart) you have to count the squares on the cloth to know where to place your stitches. For example, if you start with a symbol in the middle of the pattern you will place the corresponding stitch on the middle of the aida cloth. From there, count how many stitches there are of that symbol on the pattern and place them on the cloth relative to the first stitch.

The advantage of this method is that the look of the finished piece is uniform for the whole piece and many stitchers like this look the best. The disadvantage of this method is that it is easy to lose count of the stitches, resulting in an error in where the stitches have been placed on the cloth. To correct the error, you would then need to pull out the incorrect stitches.

Stamped Cross Stitch – The design is printed on the fabric, usually in colour, which will tell you what colours to cross stitch and where. I find that stamped cross stitch works best when the design is simple and you only need to use a small number of colours.

The advantage of this method is that you don't need to rely on a pattern or chart to know where to place your stitches, which can result in fewer mistakes than counted cross stitch. The disadvantage is that if the colours printed on the fabric are very similar, it can be hard to distinguish what colour to place where.

Embellished Cross Stitch – A design is printed on fabric and only a few parts on the finished piece need to be filled in or accented with cross stitching.

The advantage of this type is that it is faster to cross stitch an embellished fabric because you do not need to cross stitch the entire picture. The disadvantage of this method is that sometimes the pattern that is printed on the cloth is not printed straight. Also, some people think that the finished piece is not as pretty as pieces that are not embellished.

No-count Cross Stitch – Outlines are printed on the fabric and a chart shows what colour to fill in with x's.

The advantage of this method is that it is supposed to be faster than counted cross stitch, as you don't have to count to find out where each stitch should go. The disadvantage is that, similar to embellished cross stitch, sometimes the pattern that is printed on the cloth is not printed straight.

Every stitcher has a preference in the type of cross stitching that they like to do. Their preference is based on how much time they have to cross stitch, the end result and the ease of cross stitching that kit. Explore the different kits available and see which one you like the best.

For more cross stitch information and project ideas, please visit

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