Thursday, May 8, 2008

Old fashioned technique

I'm wondering if I'm one of the few remaining stitchers who adapts designs for cross stitching without using cross-stitch design software. In fact, I don't even really create a chart. Whenever I see artwork that I admire, like from an ad, a cartoon, a birthday card, a drawing, even a photo, I always stop and think if it's suitable for translation to cross stitch. I only do graphic style this way, no 3-d shading and I often make liberal use of 'sketchy' back stitch, the long stitches that can provide a clearer outline of the design. I only do this for my own use, so I don't worry about copyright issues.

I first use a program like Paint or a copy machine to re-size the design to be the finished size I want. Then I lay tracing paper over it and outline the basic shapes with as much or little detail as I plan to include in the stitching. I take the tracing paper and lay it over a piece of graph paper that has a grid with the same number of squares per inch as the stitches per inch on the fabric I plan to use. I select my colors and start stitching.

Here are a couple of small examples that I did this way a few years ago. Simple, but they did the trick when I couldn't find a professional chart with the theme I wanted:

No great skill required and it's a very handy trick I think.


Daffycat said...

Clever you! There are a couple of free design programs out there too; you might look into them.

patternnuts said...

Love the Einstein one! And I like your sketchy style. Erm, you know what I mean, hee hee. They all look great.

Just how many things do you think you have stitched over the years????

Faby said...

Good for you! I do use a x-stitch program to plot my charts, but I do hand draw them on paper first... I just find it easier to work that way. Your charts look lovely!

Chris said...

Great idea. I have charted stuff by hand in the past, but it was simple borders and wording.