If you’re one of those late bloomers who has just recently decided that cross stitch is your thing, this article is for you. For beginners, it is best to start with the basics, and starting with these three easy steps, you will become a cross-stitch pro in no time.

1. Selecting and Reading Cross Stitch Patterns

Cross stitch patterns are essential tools for getting your project done. Selecting which pattern you like and knowing how to read it is the foundation of this craft. Technically speaking, these patterns do not have a specific set of instructions, unlike a cookbook. Instead, there are keys which tell you what color to use and where in the cloth you should stitch it. They also suggest the floss color and fabric count you should use.

2. Choosing Your Cross Stitch Supplies

With the multitude of supplies you will encounter in your cross stitching venture, it will definitely get overwhelming at some point. No worries, it is always best to start with the minimum requirements and just experiment later on when you get the hang of it. Some light-colored Aida fabric which is preferably white in color, the required floss for your chosen pattern, an embroidery hoop, some needles, and a pair of scissors are enough to do the trick.

Now, the hard part is when you get to the shop and the salesperson ask you some technical details about what you need for your cross stitch project. It will get very confusing if you are not familiar with any of the options they will be offering you.

For starters, buying an Aida-cloth is unlike buying any regular fabric. You will have to consider the fabric count, the size of the holes in the cloth where you will stitch into. This fabric count decides how big your cross stitch will become. For beginners, it is recommended to use the fabric count suggested in your pattern.

Next are the needles and embroidery hoop. The hoop is basically for keeping the project nice and flat while you’re stitching, but the needle is a whole different story. Always choose a set of needles with smaller eyes than others, often called tapestry needles. The set contains various sizes of tapestry needles that you can use depending on the size of your fabric count.

Finally, any beginner should understand what a floss is. Floss is the general term for the thread used in cross stitching. There are thousands of colors of floss and choosing them by hand will be very tedious and baffling. Not to worry, because when you choose your pattern, there are always suggested color codes to help you out.

3. Starting Your First Cross Stitch Project

With your basic knowledge and supplies, you are now ready to get it on. Start with practice stitches first, like a box or a simple letter. Then work your way up the complexity of your pattern. Always remember to secure your floss after stitching so they don’t loosen up. Follow these steps and you should be fine.

Or better yet, get some help from a more experienced crafter!