Embroidery in cross stitch and variants:
Traditional cross stitch:
The cross stitch is one of the basic simple stitches, the secret is to make sure all the crosses go in the same direction. It can be worked individually or in rows. Easy on Aïda or 12 count linen fabric.
Each cross on a pattern chart is usually indicated by a square.
Variants of cross stitch:
By variants, we mean not only stitches derived therefrom, but also related stitches. They are all just as easy, even for beginners. Here is a quick practical resume.
On following diagrams:
If you are embroidering on Aïda, two squares on the pattern chart correspond to the distance between two holes in the fabric.,
If you are embroidering on 12 count linen fabric, a square corresponds to one strand of fabric (both warp and weft).
Half cross stitch:
Also sometimes called tent stitch, you only embroider one half of the whole cross, one way or the other, according to what is indicated on the pattern chart.
Upright cross stitch:
Instead of sewing the stitches at an angle, you sew a first stitch vertically and the second horizontally, to obtain the equivalent of a Greek cross.
Elongated cross stitch:
The elongated cross stitch can be sewn height wise or width wise. It is sewn just like a normal cross stitch but double in height or width depending on which way it has to be sewn. It is a great filler stitch for larger projects.
Back stitch is a basic flat stitch, vertical or horizontal, sewn between two holes on Aïda or two strands on linen, creating a solid line. Its origins date back to 10th century Portugal. Combined with the half cross stitch, back stitch is often used on cross stitch pattern charts, especially for contours. These contours soften the visual effect of the cross stitch angles. The back stitch is also used in traditional embroidery.
Sometimes this stitch is wrongly considered as too simple to use in embroidery. It is, however, extremely versatile as it can be orientated in all directions. It consist of equally size stitches spaced at regular interval. Other than embroidery, it is also very useful in quilting and gathering and the basis of Sashiko embroidery.
Straight stitch is exactly what it says. It can be worked in any direction and any size. It can be used in cross stitch, tapestry and classic embroidery.
See the mosaic stitch below, using straight stitch.
The mosaic stitch consists of making square or rectangular blocks with a succession of parallel straight stitches, normally stitched at an angle. It can be sewn from top to bottom or bottom to top, but should never be started in the middle. It is similar to Hungarian stitch but worked diagonally rather than vertically.
Small square eyelet stitch:
The square eyelet stitch is a pulled work stitch with a number of straight stitches coming out from a central hole, forming an eyelet. This eyelet can be made larger by pulling tightly on the floss. The simplest way for this stitch to place the two vertical stitches and then the horizontal ones, making the slanted stitches easier to place.
Small round eyelet stitch:
The small round eyelet stitich is sewn in the same manner as the square eyelet stitch, the needle is brought up through a hole and down into the central hole, but the first stitch is longer, two holes on Aïda and four strands on linen. As there are more stitches, the finished effect is circular. The simplest way for this stitch to place the two vertical stitches and then the horizontal ones, making the slanted stitches easier to place.
Large round eyelet stitch:
A useful stitch with a larger eyelet hole which gives a great effect. This is sewn over three holes on Aïda and 6 strands on linen fabric. The end result is an eyelet with 16 stitches. The simplest way for this stitch to place the two vertical stitches and then the horizontal ones, making the slanted stitches easier to place..
Similar to the above methods, but the stitches lay on top of each other, giving depth to the embroidery. Make a first slanted stitch over three holes on Aïda or six strands on linen. This can be stitched clockwise or anti-clockwise but not on the same motif. There are many different varieties of this stitch and it can also be a great filler for large embroidery projects.
This star stitch is sewn with four long stitches and four shorter ones. The first stitch is vertical over four holes on Aïda or eight strands on linen. The second is the same but horizontal. The two following stitches will form a cross over two holes on Aïda and four strands of linen fabric.
Large star stitch:
The large star stitich is pretty much the same as above but the first two stitches will be over eight holes on Aïda and sixteen strands of linen fabric. As with the Rhodes stitch, the stitches lay on top of each other giving a bit of volume to the embroidery.