Questions and discussions related to cross-stitching. Want to know how to get creases out of fabric? This is where to ask. To locate past posts on a specific topic, simply enter the word or words in the field below and click the Search button.
Note: Any discussions regarding the distribution of any copy-written materials will be removed. No advertisements, sales-related, or social media postings allowed.
Re: How to get started...
Tue, Oct 11, 2016 9:15 AM
Posted by JacquiP
Good Afternoon

I hope it is ok to come to this forum and ask such basic questions as I am about to. I have not undertaken a cross stitch project in years and purchased four kits at the weekend and would be most appreciative of some advice on how best to start. One of the kits is in the link below and the other three each contain a duck and a different setting.

So, the instructions advise not to commence with a knot. How best do people advise to start. I found this really useful website ( and there are various options but I am not sure of the best one.

Do people work one row of slanted stitches and then work back in the other direction to form the crosses or do people make one cross, then move onto the next cross and so on? Looking at the chart, there seems to be lots of single stitches – or maybe only one or two crosses – before there is a colour change so I was wondering whether it best to work a complete cross and then move onto the next one. I am also unsure regards carrying the colour across the back of the work. Is this what other people do? As I have said, there are lots of little pockets of each colour and some are rather close by so I would assume I can carry the colour across. Do people start with the lightest colours first and work all those stitches in the entire design before moving onto the next colour – or do people just assign themselves a part of the pattern – maybe an inch square – and work the all the lightest stitches first in that area before moving onto the next colour? I assume, if that is what people do and they are carrying their thread across, that they start at the top of the design and work downwards.

Thank you so much xxx

  • Hide Replies
    Reply from Amanda
    Thursday, October 13, 2016 8:54 AM
    Hi JacquiP If you can pm me or give me your email address I will go through everything for you. Hope to hear from you.
    xx Go to top
    • Reply from Jacqui
      Thursday, October 13, 2016 9:00 AM
      Thank you so very much, Amanda. I greatly appreciate your kind help. My e mail address is Go to top
  • Reply from NANCYE G
    Sunday, October 16, 2016 8:05 AM
    You might want to GOOGLE "how to cross stitch" You will see lots of tutorials and some YouTube videos that might be helpful Go to top
  • Hide Replies
    Reply from Terri
    Tuesday, October 18, 2016 6:22 PM
    How is your stitching coming along?? Still looking for for more help or ideas? Way back when I started, I picked up a VHS called "Everything you wanted to know about Cross Stitch" featuring Fran Fuller, and then I was all set! For myself, I stitch with my right hand, so I start at the top of a design and work from left to right and make my way down (for the most part!). I tend to take one strand of floss and fold it in half so I have a loop to anchor with (the loop method). I'll use the "waste knot" method when stitching with more than two strands. As for "travel" along the back of the design, I don't usually travel more than six stitches (I think the video recommended two or three??) but I will also anchor that strand down by feeding it under existing stitches to get to where I need to come back up again. However if there's no stitches going to be where you are traveling, and with a light coloured fabric or dark coloured floss, you run the risk that it might be seen on the design side. These "confetti" stitches are not fun, but it does tend to give the design some nice detail.
    Regardless of your stitching habits now or what they grow into, one rule I've always lived by with my stitching, and that's that all the X's are made/lay the same way.
    Best of luck to you, and you've (re)started in the right direction!! Go to top
    • Reply from JacquiP
      Wednesday, October 19, 2016 5:43 AM
      Thank you so much, Terri, for your response. What with your post and Amanda's, I feel fit to start. Just finishing some crochet projects then I shall begin my cross stitch x Go to top
  • Reply from Shawn
    Wednesday, October 19, 2016 10:26 PM
    When I start, I find the middle of the fabric and the middle of the pattern and start there. I follow the pattern from the middle. I work one complete cross stitch at a time. I find that it is easier to pull out stitches that way, if I should mess up along the way. I leave a short tail and hold it on the back as I stitch over it a couple of times. After I have completed some, I hide the tail under previous stitches. I normally only carry the thread a few stitches especially if it is a dark color on a light colored fabric. Hope this is helpful. Shawn Go to top