.....Needleprint is committed to giving high value to stitchers .....
in addition to reducing our carbon foot print by 30%. This is how we thought of INFINITY CHARTS. These are charts in PDF format and EDITABLE format for you to download with no postage or guilty air miles. Even better, you can download charts ready to recompose, recolour and change initials (or whatever your heart designs!) in Jane Greenoff's PC Cross Stitch Designer or MacStitch Charting Software. You become the Designer. Infinity Library Motifs are Copyright Free. If you don't have Jane Greenoff's Cross Stitch Designer Software you can buy it now. It comes bundled with editable versions of the Beatrix Potter and Mary Wigham Quaker charts for $20, $14, £10, 2000 Yen.

Thursday, 13 August 2009

Make Pattern Information work for You

(Warning - I am going to SHOUT. Keep a stiff upper lip and remember it is for your own good - you will thank me one day.)
The first questions I am asked whenever we are about to release a chart, after what colours shall we buy, is: If I stitch it on 35 count instead of 32 count, how much linen do I need; If I stitch over one, how much less thread will I need..... it is obvious that before you embark on stitching your customized design, you need to see exactly what it will entail. I have laboriously crafted perfectly divine designs, and then I look at the total stitch count and blanche and think, well not in my life-time! So, here are some tips for getting useful information about the chart you have on your desk top.
First click on File at the top left of your toolbar and skim down the menu until near the bottom you see the yellow question mark and Pattern Information. You are going to click on that.

What you see initially are assumptions about how you will stitch your chart and probably none of them will be any good to you, so you need to change them. But first let's spend a moment looking at the information you are given so you can see what is available. Right at the bottom on the left you see Totals: Xstitch then many thousands of stitches. Still want to do it? Now's the time to go back and use the lasso and delete key. OK, back to the top. The first box is finished size - here it tells you that the Beatrix Potter sampler is 302 stitches BROAD by 271 LENGTH (remember B before L). The finished size is 18.9 inches B by 16.9 inches L - and the dimensions are repeated in metric. But hold on a minute! Don't those sizes depend on thread count and whether you are stitching over one? Heavens to Murgatroyd! Indeed they do. The first and most important and most critical thing you will ever remember about this software - and you will only forget it once to your peril - is that these dimensions are based on stitching over 1. They are ALWAYS based on stitching over 1. What do you have to do if you stitch over 2? You 2ple it. So unless you plan to stitch over 1, you must ALWAYS DOUBLE those dimensions to arrive at the amount of linen you will need. You will never, ever forget to DOUBLE when working over 2, now, WILL YOU?

But don't those dimensions also depend on thread count? You are absolutely right. Look down the left hand side of the panel and you will see choices for thread count. At the moment it is set to 16. Is that what you plan, or something else? Look down the column and find your desired thread count. Hold on a minute, where is the 78? OK. Right at the bottom you see ??, click on this and you get another panel which allows you to specify whatever thread count you want in inches or centimetres. It is for even weave, so for uneven weaves specify for the LESSER of the two thread counts, UNLESSER you want to run out of fabric on one side. Hard bit done now.

All you have to do is read off the amount of thread you need. Check the options for strands beneath the thread count options. You can use up to 6 strands in your needle at once if you really must. And what happens if you don't have all that thread in one colour - well, you could jump in your car, burn up the (millenia) old fossil fuel and go out to buy some more thread (and gas) - or you could think that maybe if you just substituted the colour of a motif here and there, you will have plenty of thread in your stash to manage. This is how you can make Pattern Information work for you. Because after all, since you paid for the chart, Infinity charting puts you where you should be, in control. YES!

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