Sunday, 1 February 2015

How To Cross Stitch - the 3/4 Stitch

The Ultimate Cross Stitch Guide, Post 4 is on the 3/4 Stitch.  Along with the cross, and backstitch, this is one of the main three stitches used in cross stitch.  It is easier to stitch on evenweave than aida as evenweave gives you a hole in the middle of the cross.  Stitching on aida, you have to push your needle through the tightly woven square which takes a little more effort and concentration to get precise, but is still relatively easy.  It makes a nice step up for the beginner stitcher so they can try some more complex patterns. In my opinion the 3/4 stitch also adds more shape and definition to cross stitch patterns.

The 3/4 stitch is 3/4s of a cross.  It can sit anywhere on the square - top left, bottom left, top right, bottom right - and its position alters how you stitch it.

Bottom Left 3/4 Stitch


Come up at the bottom left corner of the square at point 1

Push the needle down through the middle of the square at point 2.   

Come up at the bottom right corner of the square at point 3 and then down through the top left corner at point 4








Top Right 3/4 Stitch


Come up through the middle of the square  at point 1 and then down through the top right corner at point 2.  

Come up through the bottom right corner of the square at point 3 and then down through the top left corner at point 4.










Top Left 3/4 Stitch


Stitch the bottom stitch as normal - up at point 1, down at point 2.  

Then push the needle up through the middle of the square at point 3, and down through the top left corner of the square at point 4.











Bottom Right 3/4 Stitch


Stitch the bottom stitch as normal - up at point 1, down at point 2.  

Come up at the bottom right corner of the square at point 3 and finally down through the middle of the square at point 4.












Always remember the golden rule of cross stitch - keep your top stitches pointing the same way.  This will make your finished piece look a lot neater.

Adding the last 1/4

Quite often you will need to add the other 1/4 of the cross in a second colour.  You can either do this by adding the last 1/4 using the method above, or by adapting it slightly to add more dimension.


Option 1 - adding dimension
First, decide which of the two colours is meant to sit in front.  Is one colour more background?  Or is it hair that should sit in front of or behind the face?  

Once you have decided, stitch the foreground 3/4 using the method described above.  With the background colour, you are only going to stitch 1/4.  It is easiest to bring your needle up from the empty corner and then down through the middle hole created by the previous colour (as with the green thread in images one and two).  Where the 1/4 stitch is part of the bottom stitch (image two), make sure to push it under the top half of the stitch.

Option 2 - the same stitch
For this stitch, complete in the same method as detailed above, and shown in images three and four above.

The main difference for me is in the final presentation -  option 1 adds less bulk to the square, particularly if there is also going to be a backstitch separating the colours. As always however, the choice is entirely up to you.

The stitches on the right have been stitched using option 1
The stitches on the left have been stitched using option 2.

Happy Stitching!





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