Waffu’s Cross Stitch Principles

Hey guys!

Before I go on to this post, I want to apologize for no post last Monday. I knew I wasn’t going to be around for the holidays and decided to use WordPress’ schedule-a-post thing. Well I was in such a hurry to start my holiday that I guess I didn’t pay attention to the scheduled posting date. Instead of 11-24-14, I put 12-24-14. It was a total slip of finger, but still I was shocked to come home and see that I had no post! I was doing such a great job with posting on time too. It’s just a bummer.

I had a great holiday, though. That makes up for it.

My unposted last post was me wishing everyone a Happy Thanksgiving, if you celebrate, and I talked about how I’m slowly working on KL. There wasn’t a photo update either. I have zero motivation to work on KL guys. I’m trying, but it’s frustrating. This means still no stitching update right now, buuttt I’m going to show you guys how I cross stitch!

You have to understand something about me when I stitch, first. If you are not aware, from my previous blogs, the way my back looks is super important to me. A lot of what I do, as I stitch, comes down to making sure the back of my project looks just as good as the front. I want to see the mirror image on the back of my project. There’s this feeling of pride and accomplishment I get from achieving that clean back.

I started as a cross-country stitcher. I would stitch as much as I could with one color and then move on to another color afterwards. Here’s an example, used from previous pictures, on what cross-country looks like.

Asian Fantasy 4 WIP 1 (020714)

Do you see how I have stitching all over the place? It makes sense to me, as I am using the pattern, but I can freely go wherever I want. No reins, man. No reins.

Now, the Parking technique has become a very vital stitching technique. Instead of going wherever I want I work in columns. It’s a very effective cross stitch technique. It’s also achieving a clean back for me. I’m still playing with the technique, but I see important concepts from how I use to cross-country being used to park.

Here are my four cross stitching basics that I use!

**Note: I am using 25-count fabric as an example here. That means I might adjust my basics if used on another type of fabric, but for now you can get a jist.**

Basic One

Always…always…do your crosses one way. This is the most basic rule of thumb. You never want your crosses to look different.

Uniform Crosses

Now in this example I spaced out the crosses to show how they look uniformed. The one on the right-hand side has a change in color so you can better see that the stitches are going differently than the others. Instead of having the bottom left/ top right go across the treads, the bottom left/top right are going underneath. It might not look like much but it can be very noticeable when you have your threads interchanging, trust me.

I personally come up on the bottom left and go down top right first. Then when crossing the X, I come up bottom right and then go down top left.

My Crosses

Basic Two

Don’t skip over more than 3 stitches when going vertical or horizontal to the same color. That means you can only go up, down, left, and right over only 3 stitches and no more if you have to get to the same color you are using.

Over 3

If you have to go over more, just run your thread through the back to get where you need to be. Don’t jump the back threads. It’ll look messy.

Basic Three

You can go diagonal to get to the same color, but don’t go skip more than 2 stitches.


I do NOT thread diagonal from the back here. Having the thread go diagonal under stitches can be seen quite well. It makes the back look odd. Not saying you can’t do that, but I just don’t.

Basic Four

When it comes to securing my thread when I’m done, I always run my thread underneath at least 5 stitches on the back. Then I either go up a row and run my thread underneath 5 more stitches or I go down a row and run my thread underneath 5 more stitches. I do two rows at least to secure. This might be over kill but I DO NOT want my threads wiggling through. My worst nightmare are threads coming out everywhere and having to restitch it all.

Securing at End

Then I just cut the thread and voila…done.

Got it?

I was trying to think of how I’d cross stitch in general, regardless of technique. Again, I’d adjust given the fabric I’m using. I’m sure if my thread count were higher, I’d change to higher numbers on Basic Two and Three. If the thread count were a lower, I’d go down on the numbers on Basic Two and Three.

I do have more rules with Parking. I didn’t go into that because I’m still currently trying to figure out what’s best.

I’ll try to work on KL guys, but I’m not being optimistic here these days. I hope everyone had a good holiday, if you celebrate, and have a great week!

Happy Stitching!



3 thoughts on “Waffu’s Cross Stitch Principles

  1. I think my principles are pretty much the same…I’m curious for your parking ‘rules’ though! And the graphics are pretty neat =)

  2. Couldn’t agree with you more on your philosophy for keeping the back as neat as possible. I’m currently working on a baby blanket, which is keeping my back in check as it’s going to be forever on show and there’s no where to hide then! 🙂

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