This Article is About
cross stitch
embroidery scissors
tapestry needles
cross stitch thread
wooden rollers
tapestry needle
sharp point
hand sewing
Cross Stitch Equipment
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When organising the equipment you need for counted, as well as stamped, cross stitch, there are a number of essential items that are required. Buy the best quality you can afford, treat your investment with care and it should last for many years.

Tapestry Needles

Use a blunt tapestry needle and choose one that slips easily through the holes in your fabric without piercing or splitting the threads. Finer needles have a higher number on the packet (for example, 24 and 26), whilst thicker needles have lower numbers (for example, 18 and 22).

To embellish cross stitch with beads, attach these using a beading needle. These are also available in different sizes bu are finer, with a sharp point.

Dressmaking Scissors

You will need these to cut your fabric to size before sewing.

Embroidery Scissors

You will need sharp, fine-pointed scissors to cut lengths of stranded cotton from the skein and to trim off finished threads on the back of the work. To preserve their sharpness, never cut fabric or paper with them. Scissors which are not sharp enough will chew the thread and make a mess. Wear your scissors on a ribbon around your nexk to keep them always at hand.

Sewing Thread

This is used to oversew the edges of your fabric to prevent fraying. It is also used to tack the central lines on the fabric. Do not be tempted to use dark coloured sewing thread for tacking as it can leave slight traces of fibres to discolour your fabric.

Embroidery Frames

For pieces of work which are too large to fit into embroidery hoops, embroidery frames can be used. These consist of two wooden stretches at the side and two wooden rollers at the top and bottom, held in place with wing nuts or pegs. The rollers each have a piece of webbing fixed to them onto which the fabric is stitched.

Thread Organiser

Keep spare strands of cross stitch thread on a thread organiser to keep them in order. You can make your own by punching holes down the side of one of those pieces of card from the inside a packet of tights.

Embroidery and Flexi-Hoops

Embroidery and flexi-hoops are used to hold the cross stitch fabric taut whilst stitching and are necessary to produce even stitching. Use a cross stitch hoop only if the area to be stitched fits easily inside it. If the hoop has to be moved over existing cross stitches, the stitches risk being flattened and distorted by the pressure of the hoop.


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