Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Help With a Question

Now I have been stitching for almost 20 years now, but now that I have entered blogland and have met and seen such wonderful stitchers, I would not consider myself an experience stitcher. I have been stitching the same way since I was 15, and I am just learning now, new techniques and about finishing's. I am experimenting now with different fabrics and fibers and I feel like a novice.

My question is..... if you are stitching on a 28 count linen or cotton evenweave fabric, would you use 2 plys of floss or 3 plys? I have always used 2 plys, but I sometimes don't like the coverage. I'm worried that 3 plys would make it a little harder to get nice even stitches (although, mine aren't always that even). Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Right now I am working on Little House Needleworks Ornament of the Month, "Red House in Winter" and with all the dark colors and the light linen, I am not happy with the coverage of my 2 plys of floss. I have way to much finished to frog it out, so I am continuing and hoping I will like the finished product. Pictures later.
Happy Stitching,


  1. Good question! I've only stitched 2 strands on 28ct and have never used 3 strands on anything. I think it might be too bulky with 3 but you can try a little section and see if you like it better.

  2. If three ply is too heavy, try reversible cross stitch. This usually works for me and I even managed a ribbon using it..Sincerely Carol

  3. I'm thinking you're using cotton...but the general rule is the same, cotton, silk or wool. How many plys of a multi-ply thread to use in cross stitch depends on the thread you are using. Although they look to the naked eye to be the same, threads can vary quite a bit, both in actual diameter and in loft, so that the "fluffier" (if you look at them under high magnification you can see this aspect better) ones will cover a bit 'more' than the harder-finish ones.

    Probably the best bet would be to make yourself a little test sample first and try all those threads/combinations, etc, and you will then be able to tell which suits better for any given purpose. I have a few of these done with the threads I use most commonly, one strip of even-weave of each of the counts I usually use. A fine-tip Sharpie will mark them for you.

    I am making up one these days, in fact, readying myself to make a reproduction sampler. The original was done by my ggg grandmother and has been lost in a fire, but I had graphed it off many years ago and shared the graph with many people, so still have access to both that and color pictures, taken with a macro lens (way before digitals...) The linen was all grown there on the farm, and nearly the entire embroidery was done with linen thread, with just a bit of wool. So I have the flax grown and processed, the linen spun, fabric woven, threads dyed, and am now making my sample. I'm hoping to complete the piece before I die!

    SJ, well steamed, in midcoast Maine

  4. Hillery....I am like Valerie and have only ever done 2 over 2 on 28, I think it might be bulky, but I also think it depends on the floss, like Caron wildflowers is sooo different than Watercolors, KWIM? I can't wait to see what you do :)


  5. It's totally up to you and what looks and feels right to you. I use 2 on 28 ct and 32 ct. unless it's silk, them usually 1 over 2 on 32ct. The wonder of cross stitch is that you get to do whatever you want to.
    babs in alabama

  6. I've only ever used 2 on 28 count. Are you pulling your stitches too tight? Are your threads laying flat? I've read a couple people complain about this problem so it might just be the combination of fabric and thread you're using. Do what you feel looks right :o)



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