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Cross Stitch Academy

How to choose a cross-stitch kit

Nowadays, to start making embroidery, it is enough to buy a special cross-stitch kit in needlework stores.

The main benefit of a free cross-stitch kit which you can effortlessly find in the Internet or special magazines is a convenience in use. Cross-stitch kits are created by professionals who thoroughly work out every detail of the image.

Modern cross-stitch kits provide you with everything you need to start working on a design: a chart, an instruction, fabric, threads, and a needle; except scissors and a frame. These kits differ in the components.

What you have to pay special attention to is:

  • a cross-stitch Kit Packaging
  • a level of design and complexity of work;
  • a chart
  • fabric quality
  • quality  of thread and other components
  • clear and easy to follow instructions

Sometimes needlewomen choose a picture only because of the impressive matching combination of hues or, on the contrary, contrasting hues. Unfortunately, the quality of printing technology is frequently not very advanced and it is possible to receive absolutely unexpected colors in the final embroidery product. If you choose the goods in an Internet Store, you should also remember that all monitors can show the same shades differently depending on their setups.

Cross-stitch Kit Packaging

A cross-stitch kit should be packaged into a plastic bag or a high quality paper bag. The image on packaging should be a photo of a completed work, instead of a picture from special software. Looking at a picture on the cover, the skilled needlewoman can immediately define how difficult the  design in the kit is; however, some manufacturers, for beginners’ convenience, print something of a ”hotel stars rating” on a cover where «one asterisk» means an embroidery is easy to make, «5 stars» means a level of a pro.

A Chart

An embroidery chart is one of the most important components in a kit. Charts can be multi-colored, in black-and-white or multi-colored-symbols, but the main thing is that they should be distinct and sharp.

Color charts are convenient if there are not a lot of colors in the chart and the colors are distinct. Otherwise it becomes more difficult to distinguish shades, and they can even start to merge at electric lighting. Symbolic charts are more preferable for difficult embroideries; however, some manufacturers sometimes use almost identical symbols in their charts that could lead to errors in the final embroidery product. In high quality cross-stitch kits, symbols on charts are large and very accurate.

Sometimes cross-stitch kits include two charts: one is just in symbols and another focuses on contours. In such a way manufacturers avoid a mess in the chart and work of needlewomen becomes much easier.

Embroidery Floss

You will find quality threads in the majority of cross-stitch kits. The logo of a thread trade mark, which is always   trusted by customers, is quite often found on a kit cover. The high reputation of such companies as Dimensions is built on the quality threads as well, though they don't advertise the brand of their thread. The history of Madeira thread (Germany) is inquiring in this respect. Madeira thread is not the most well known among needlewomen in the world. Though from the very beginning, the cross-stitch kits "Zolotoe Runo" have been completed with Madeira thread. Needlewomen immediately appreciated excellent quality of Madeira thread and the “dark horse” has found the admirers.

You can evaluate the quality of thread without any effort even if you have not had any experience working with it before as this embroidery thread will be durable and in impressive hues.

The thread can be wool, silk, metalized or cotton. Threads can be put into a kit either as whole hanks or rolled on special organizers or cut and arranged in bunches. In the latter case you need to sort out the threads of different tones by yourself. You shouldn’t worry as it is not difficult to do because a manufacturer provides all necessary instructions.


You can evaluate the quality of a fabric with the same approach. Well known companies use only the fabrics of trustworthy manufacturers. They complete their cross-stitch sets with high-quality fabric such as Aida, Linda, Belfast, Davos, Dublin and so on. For example, RTO Company receives fabrics from one of the best factory in the world, Zweigart (Germany).

Embroidery fans should be aware of some problems related to the choice of fabric for embroidery which can easily ruin their mood. Some companies often produce the same design in two variants: on a fabric of Aida type and woven fabrics. Before purchasing a kit, you should check whether a type of fabric in the kit is the one you want for your design.


A clear step by step instruction is one more criterion to consider. Generally, it is easy to make cross-stitch even without tips; however, if it is necessary to make any intricate item, a clear and detailed instruction will be absolutely vital in this case. "Riolis" Company provides a detailed description with illustrations; therefore, their products «Create It Yourself» and «Premium» always receive good responses and bring a lot of pleasure and satisfaction to their admirers.

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