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Charts & Patterns

Cross-stitch charts come in a variety of types. They are available as leaflets, in books, in magazines, in kits or online. If you find a free pattern online that you like, it's a good idea to print it out the first time you see it, or download it and save it on your computer. This could save you loads of time trying to remember which bookmark is that pattern, or the disappointment of returning to the site only to find the pattern gone.

I have many patterns in my collection. The patterns I've printed from web sites are kept in clear plastic sheet holders in a binder. The rest of my patterns are either single charts or leaflets, which I keep in the bottom part of my CraftStor. Eventually I will have to use a different method, as the bin is almost full. At that time I will probably switch to a file box. I keep magazines in binders as well. They are easily organized on special three ring plastic holders that hold the magazines by the center page, much like a bookmarker. You could also use this method for some leaflets if they are the same size or a bit smaller than a binder is.

I've found that larger patterns require much folding and unfolding during the stitching process. To prevent fraying and fading along the folds, I run acid free clear tape along the folds on both sides of the pattern. Another solution is to photocopy the pattern in sections, which you can do for your own personal use without violating any copyright laws. You could also have smaller patterns enlarged on a copier to save on eyestrain.

Once I sew a design, I don't often sew it again, but just in case, I use pencil marks to keep track of where I've sewn. That way, I can always erase the marks should I decide to make a pattern again. There are magnetic pattern holders available commercially. The pattern is held on with a line marker, which is only useful if you sew line by line. I don't stitch that way, thus don't use them.