Cross-stitch, as the name suggests is an embroidery form which uses X-shaped stitches to make designs on cloth. It is a very popular and one of the oldest form of thread counting embroidery. Cross-stitch is done on a weave fabric called aida cloth. Designs are done by counting the squares and doing a specific amount of stitches on them in the "x" shape. The stitches are uniform size and appearance and the person stitching, counts the threads in each direction. Cross -stitch is popular all over the world, especially in Europe and Asia.
What are the Different Types of threads used in Cross Stitch?
Cotton floss: This is the most common type of cross stitch thread used for cross stitch today. It is made of a material called "mercerized cotton" and has six strands that are loosely twisted together which make sit easier to separate the strands.
DMC Embroidery : Floss and Fibers are also the most commonly used for cross stitch thread. Rayon, satin floss, linen floss, metallic floss and cotton are some of the common DMC embroidery fibers.
Anchor embroidery : Anchor embroidery floss is one of the most popular embroidery threads used in cross stitch. They come in standard thread colors that are generally used in cross stitch projects. But, there are also different types of threads like over dyed threads, metallic, cords, and braids that are specially used for cross stitch. Other materials used for cross stitch threads are pearl cotton, and rayon. Sometimes different wool threads, metallic threads or other special threads are used for the whole work or just to add accents and embellishments.
What is the History of Cross Stitch?
Cross stitch is believed to have started in Europe. Eastern and Central Europe had cross-stitch in floral and geometric patterns. They used black and red cotton floss on linen. The earliest known cross-stitch sampler was from the United States created by Loara Standish, in 1653. Traditionally, cross-stitch was used to embroider clothes like dishcloths, household linens, and doilies. It is now used on canvas as well and placed on walls as decorative pieces. Shaded patterns of Berlin wool work of the mid-nineteenth century has become popular again in recent times. Today cotton floss is the most common cross stitch thread used for embroidery.
How to do a Cross Stitch?
Gather all the materials required: The materials required for cross stitch are a pair of good scissors, a small embroidery hoop, a piece of aida fabric cloth, embroidery floss of any color, and a size 24 tapestry needle. To buy the right Aida cloth a 8 Aida cloth will have 8 cross stitches per inch while a 16 Aida cloth will 16 cross stitches per inch. For a beginner starting with a lower count on Aida cloth is better.
Make pattern using a graph paper or you can get one from a embroidery website.
Find the Centre by folding the cloth lengthwise and widthwise and crease. The point in the middle is the centre. Then start stitching as near the to the center and leave a 2 inch thread on the wrong side of the cloth as it is not necessary to knot the thread. Make a pattern by making a long row on half stitches and then working backwards to complete the cross. Always work your stitches the same way as you start.
What is the World Wide Knit Event?
The World Wide Knit event is held every year in the 2nd week of June and will be celebrated this year(2011) from June11th - June19th. It is an international event and is held locally where people interested in the event can come together and is helped by volunteers. Knitting, crocheting, cross stitch and other handicraft workers are the people who mostly attend the event but anyone with interest in embroidery can go to the event. WWKIP Day was started in 2005 by Danielle Landes as a way for knitters to come together and enjoy each other’s company. People go with their own group of knitters to have fun together and exchange patterns and learn some new ideas at the event.