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Topic: How to fluff up my cross-stitch, for lack of better words  (Read 1592 times)
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Sunset Gun
« on: April 24, 2011 10:18:34 PM »

Well well! first post.

I'm cross-stitching a portrait of a close friend -- my first large project. As an amateur, my stitches are getting rather bumpy and lumpy and uneven, especially in areas dense with different colors. Is there perhaps some quick n easy method of smoothing it all out when the project is done? Perhaps steaming will flatten the loose stitches whilst thickening up the tight ones? Would ironing it face down with steam even out the stitches? I'm rather self-taught, I'm afraid.
« Reply #1 on: April 25, 2011 02:12:18 PM »

While ironing does make things looks nicer (face down on a thick clean towel, and don't press hard, just lots of steam), and can help straighten your fabric, I'm sorry to say it won't help correct your stitch tension.  Undecided

Are you using a frame or hoop? That's the most effective tool for good tension. Also, are you using the right floss thickness for your fabric gauge? If you can post a picture, that might be useful for other suggestions.

I know it sounds completely awful, but if there's a bit you're not happy with, then it's worth unpicking and re-doing (always with fresh thread). I know, I know! But when you're putting a lot of work into something, you've got to be happy with it. I've been stitching for many years, and like to think I'm pretty good at it now, and I still regularly unpick and re-do bits (in fact, more than I did when I was a beginner.)

And welcome to Craftster! Smiley Hope you will keep chatting and show us what you're working on.
Sunset Gun
« Reply #2 on: April 25, 2011 04:01:25 PM »

ahh, this is going to be fun. the answer to every question itself asks so many more questions i don't really have the answer to. photo forthcoming; i've already put thousands and thousands of stitches into this thing, and i ain't about to take any of them out. though uneven, the unevenness is itself kind of evenly spread out over the work. i think I will try ironing it when it's finished.

i don't know why they're sideways --- they were right-side up when i uploaded them.

Sunset Gun
« Reply #3 on: April 25, 2011 04:01:57 PM »

thank you for your encouragement! i've just taken up embroidery. i made a tiny sampler when I was in Brownies about 20 years ago, now am absolutely loving having something to do with my hands all the time, that is neither drinking nor smoking.
« Reply #4 on: April 25, 2011 09:35:08 PM »

Goodness me there's a lot of work in that!! That's going to be quite amazing!

I can't see an obvious problem in the photo - if the overall texture is the same across the whole work, then it should be fine. How many strands of floss are you using? It does look very densely textured to me (but it's hard to tell for sure). Of course, as I'm sure you know, you need to keep it the same for the rest of this piece. But perhaps a suggestion for future pieces - fewer strands of floss might make for a smoother texture, if that's what you want?

I hope you post the finished piece for us to see Smiley
Sunset Gun
« Reply #5 on: April 26, 2011 06:57:34 PM »

if only everyone's eyes were as forgiving as my crappy camera to the flaws. i'm using 3 strands on 14 pt aida cloth, as two strands left too many white patches and i'd like this to look more solid. in retrospect i should have just done needlepoint, that would have saved me half the stitches. I'll surely be posting a finished product, as i'm damned proud of this thing so far. it's MASSIVE.
« Reply #6 on: April 26, 2011 09:43:17 PM »

Yes, I see what you mean, 2 strands would probably be easier for smooth tension with so many colour changes, but less complete coverage. As you say, needlepoint on a fine canvas would be another way to get the more solid effect.

It's huge! It'll be very impressive when it's done  Smiley
« Reply #7 on: December 19, 2011 04:54:32 PM »

I know this is an old post---
I think 2 strands would of been better--Putting your piece in a hoop/stand will help with your tension.(it will take lots of practise to get it right) You might see a bit of white peeking thru-- You won't notice them when you step away from the project a bit-- You don't look at paintings up close...same goes for larger cross stitches.
My dragon post -- stitched on 14 count using 2 strands--you don't see the white peeking thru from a distance. https://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=394740.0

Are your stitches all facing in the right direction?? I couldn't tell. That will help alot --stitches will look flatter.

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