top of page

Getting Started with Cross-Stitching: A Beginner's Guide

rto cross stitch kit embroidery

What is Cross-Stitching? Beginner Guide.

At its core, cross-stitching is a form of embroidery that uses X-shaped stitches to create intricate patterns and designs on fabric. These stitches are typically worked on even-weave fabric such as Aida cloth or linen, using embroidery floss in various colors. From simple geometric shapes to elaborate scenes and portraits, the possibilities with cross-stitching are endless.

Cross-stitching is more than just a craft; it's a timeless art form that has been cherished for centuries. Whether you're a complete beginner or someone looking to rediscover the joys of needlework, cross-stitching offers a creative outlet that is both relaxing and rewarding. In this guide, we'll delve into the world of cross-stitching, exploring its origins, techniques, and why it continues to captivate crafters around the globe.

A Brief History of Cross-Stitching

Cross-stitching has a rich history that dates back thousands of years. While its exact origins are difficult to pinpoint, evidence of cross-stitching has been found in artifacts from ancient civilizations such as Egypt, China, and Greece. It was during the Middle Ages in Europe, however, that cross-stitching began to gain widespread popularity as a decorative technique for embellishing clothing, household linens, and religious textiles.

Over the centuries, cross-stitching evolved from a practical skill to a beloved pastime enjoyed by people of all ages and backgrounds. With the advent of printed patterns and commercially available supplies in the 19th century, cross-stitching became more accessible to hobbyists, fueling its popularity as a beloved craft.

Why Cross-Stitching is Popular Today

In an age dominated by technology and digital distractions, cross-stitching offers a refreshing break from screens and a chance to reconnect with a slower, more tactile form of creativity. Its repetitive nature can be meditative, providing a sense of calm and mindfulness in an increasingly busy world.

Additionally, cross-stitching appeals to a wide range of people due to its versatility and accessibility. Whether you're a seasoned stitcher or a complete novice, there's something uniquely satisfying about watching a design come to life one stitch at a time. From handmade gifts to personalized home decor, cross-stitching allows crafters to express their creativity and make something beautiful with their own hands.

Getting Started with Your First Project

Now that you have a basic understanding of cross-stitching and its appeal, it's time to dive in and start stitching! Here are some essential steps to help you get started at cross stitching beginner guide:

Essential Supplies

To begin your cross-stitching journey, you'll need a few basic supplies:

  • Fabric: needlework fabric such as Aida 14 ct is ideal for beginners.

  • Embroidery Floss: DMC 117 Mouliné Spécial is a popular choice, with about 500 different colors available. Each skein has 6 easily separated strands, so you can customize its thickness. DMC mouline is made from Egyptian cotton using production in France.

  • Needles: Embroidery needles with a blunt tip are best.

  • Pattern: Start with a simple pattern to practice your stitches.

  • Hoop: An embroidery hoop keeps your fabric taut and easier to work with.

  • Scissors: Small, sharp scissors are perfect for cutting threads.

Choosing Your First Project

When selecting your first cross-stitch project, consider the following tips:

  • Start Small: Choose a pattern that is manageable in size.

  • Simple Designs: Look for patterns with fewer colors and simple shapes.

  • Personal Interest: Pick a design that you find interesting and motivating.

Preparing Your Materials

Before you start stitching, prepare your materials:

  • Frame Your Fabric: Place your needlework fabric in the embroidery hoop and tighten it.

  • Sort Your Threads: Organize your embroidery floss by color. However, with RTO counted cross-stitch kits you don't need as the threads are already presorted on the organizer with numbers.

  • Read the Pattern: Familiarize yourself with the pattern and instructions.


Cross-stitching is a delightful hobby that combines creativity with relaxation. As you begin your cross-stitching journey, remember to take your time and enjoy the process. Whether you're stitching for relaxation, self-expression, or the sheer joy of creating something beautiful, cross-stitching is a hobby that anyone can enjoy.

Stay tuned for more beginner-friendly tutorials and inspiration to help you embark on your cross-stitching journey!


bottom of page