We love all things cross stitch around here – like this VERY cool kids’ monogram sampler. A cross stitch pattern like this fun one is the starting point, of course, but what else do you need to make a gorgeous, exciting piece of stitchery?
What You Need To Make Your Cross Stitch Masterpiece
Here’s what you need to make your cross stitch work of art (and they ARE works of art!):
1. Your pattern
2. A piece of cross stitch fabric
3. Floss: all our patterns are made with DMC floss
4. A needle
5. A sharp pair of scissors
6. Optional: an embroidery hoop
What Is “Evenweave”?
Evenweave simply means that the fabric has the same number of threads width wise and length wise. This is a general term that is usually used for all cross stitch fabrics.
The Two Main Kinds of Fabric
The most popular cross stitch fabric is aida. It comes in a multitude of colors and sizes. Here is a close- up image of aida fabric evenweave fabric.
With aida there is no question about where your needle should go to make each stitch because each square is the exact same width and height.
Aida is a sturdy, durable fabric that is easy to work with, will last a long time and is highly recommended.
The grid on a cross stitch pattern corresponds to the grid on aida fabric, making it easy to determine stitch placement.
Some cross stitchers prefer linen for their projects. It’s especially desirable if you want your design to look older, such as in a vintage or antique sampler. Here is a sampler that I did on linen.
You can see that I made this sampler in 1986 – but it looks older than that. That’s because the linen looked “vintage” or “aged” when it was brand new – and, of course, it’s even older now.
Be warned that linen is harder to work because you stitch over two threads, rather than one. Yes, it is possible to get a bit “off” and have a problem on your hands. Here’s an example I created.
If you are a beginner it’s best to start with aida and save linen for later.
There are also projects called petit point that use only one stitch in linen fabric, but the stitches are tiny and not much fun, in my opinion. Plus, it takes twice as long to finish your project. Occasionally, though, it’s a joy to use these small stitches for a small area since you can get more detail.