35 Common Terms Of Cross Stitch For Beginners That Everyone Needs To Know

As beginners, understanding the terms of stitches is very important. Sometimes the new terms and weird acronyms in cross stitch are confusing you. Learning cross stitch for beginners needs to familiarize themselves with many phrases used in stitching.

The following lists are prevalent words that you have to know if you are new to cross stitch.

Cross Stitch

Cross stitch is a kind of needlework to form an X shape from two diagonal stitches. It is a far-famed form of counted thread embroidery in which X shapes are used to make a picture or funny quotation. Therefore, it is one of the easiest forms of hand sewing to learn.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Meaning


A stitch form that functions as outline and detail on completed cross stitch. It enhances areas which have been stitched.

Backstitching is usually done over cross stitch, around the borders, and on blank fabric.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Backstitch


This is an even weave fabric ideally used for cross stitch. Groups of threads are evenly woven to form squares.

This cotton fabric has visible holes for crossing the threads. You do not need an embroidery hoop because Aida cloth has natural stiffness.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Aida


Fabric is a primary supply to create any needlework. It is made from polyester, canvas, cotton, jute, rayon and a combination of some fibers. Each material will pervade the dye differently.

Cross stitch fabrics have different types with unique lustrous and texture. Some of them are Aida, linens, hardanger and more.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Fabric


Chart is stitch placement pattern in counted cross stitch. You can plan the direction to stitch by looking at a chart. The charts consist of whole squares that represent complete cross stitch.

The most popular types of chart is the black and white variety. Some shades can be easily differentiate by using it.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Chart

French Knot

Small details like nose, button, and eyes are defined with a small knot named French knot. It is done by wrapping thread once or twice around the needle, so it looks like a rose embroidered.

The beauty of French knot comes from its unparalleled texture on the embroidery work.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Knots

Cross Country

Having a cross country look when you keep on using threads across the sections of a pattern. It is done instead of finishing one section and start again.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Country


Evenweave is a fabric made from cotton or mix of cotton. Normally evenweave is made over two threads, but it is woven with single thread for fine designs.

This fabric has similar thickness number of threads in horizontal and vertical direction.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Evenweave

Blending Filament

Threads which are delicate and light used to add sparkle and glisten. Therefore, they give a unique effect in your stitching.

In fact, blending filament consists of two threads, they are the metallic part and a thin string. It is designed to be integrated with another thread. Stranded cotton is usually combined with blending filament.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Filament


FAD is an acronym of fun and done. It is when you have completed your cross stitch projects. The FAD cross stitches can be put on frames to display.

Cross Stitch for Beginners FAD


Each fabric has the number of holes and threads per inch called count. For instance, fabric counts of Aida commonly start from 10 to 22 squares per inch.

The higher number between inches indicate the stitch is smaller. It means that you can pack more stitches in the larger count, but the project will be smaller.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Count


It is cutting out and removing some of stitches when you make a mistake. Frogging is more popular than the term ‘picking’.

This mistake is avoidable since stitchers always get through a project with frogging at least once.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Frog


DMC is the most popular brand of floss and threads. The threads are used for cross stitch and embroidery. This brand also offers a huge variety of colors and effects.

Cross Stitch for Beginners DMC

Half Cross Stitch

It is synonymous with tent stitch. Half cross stitch is a single diagonal stitch that defines shading.

One of areas that works with half cross stitch design is the background. Then this stitch is up through 1, down through 2, up through 3, down through 4, etc.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Half Cross

Embellished Cross Stitch

It is some stamped or printed designs such as background. You do not need to stitch all designs, but only the main features.

Embellishing means adding highlights and something like buttons, beads, or ribbons.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Embellished


Blanc is the French word that means white color. The name of that color is used by DMC, the headquartered in France.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Blanc

Fractional Stitches

Fractional stitches include quarter, half, and three-quarter which are simple stitches. Quarter and three-quarter provide a rounded look to a design and half stitch provides an airy look.

They give more details like curves within a picture.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Fractional

Counted Cross Stitch

Placing stitches by using a paper chart and plain fabric is called counted cross stitch. There is no pattern printed and stamped on the fabric. Then, by using pattern graph, the stitches will be added.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Counted


Jobelan is a great fabric if you want a pretentious and old-fangled look. It has high quality evenweave textile material.

This fabric is smoother than Aida and linen with thread counts range from 18 up to 40.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Jobelan


A name of fabric which is ideally used by children to learn to embroider with. This is a rectangular shaped canvas with large holes (6 holes per inch).

It is such a firm fabric so that is easy to use. Binca is available in assorted colors like sky blue, yellow, green, and maroon.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Binca


This is a kind of stranded cotton that becomes the main ingredient in cross stitch designs. Therefore, it comes with skeins of 6 strands twisted together.

Sewing cross stitch by using floss needs two or three strands in a needle. The types of floss are nylon, rayon, silk, and metallic.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Floss

You may also enjoy reading this 20 Unique Embroidery Floss Project Ideas to Challenge your Creativity

Cross Stitch for Beginner’s Kit

One pack that consists of thread or stranded cotton, fabric, needle, charts and guidance. Those all you need to finish cross stitch designs.

Embroidery Kits Storage

Confetti Stitch

Single stitches of various colors which are spread across the fabric. The scattered stitches have been sprinkled like confetti.

To create a confetti stitch, it is essential to begin with how to use a loop to start the project.

Cross Stitch for Beginners WIP
Leslie LaFleur


WIP stands for work in progress.  This acronym is popular across many crafts. It happens when you are doing a project, but still keep setting it for a longer time.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Confetti
Vickie Hartwell


Tapestry is familiar as needlepoint or canvas work. It relates to a weaving process to create cushions and pictures.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Tapestry
Esther Aliu


Needlepoint refers to any variety of embroidery stitches which are done on canvas. It is using basic stitches to create geometric patterns and realistic pictures. Silk, rayon, ribbon, and wool are types of fibers in needlepoint.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Needlepoint

Waste Canvas

Woven threads are held together with a kind of starch to form waste canvas. It will guide you to place the stitches when the fabric does not use evenly woven grid of holes. This canvas has counts from 6 similar to evenweave and Aida.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Waste


Stash means collection of stitching stuff. Fabric, floss, and any supplies that are important in sewing cross stitches.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Stash


It is an old-fashioned fabric which has a natural uneven slub so that it looks so rustic like raw linen. It is made of 100% linen thread which is woven with a single thread.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Linen


There are two different floss colors or more in the same needle. It usually uses one strand of every color to stitch.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Tweeding

Stitching Over Two

You bring up needle through a hole until the thread and needle go back down again. Then, sometimes you will miss many holes.

The number of holes you have missed is called stitching over two.

Cross Stitch for Beginners 1 over 2


The word UFO stands for unfinished object. It happens when stitchers start more projects, but they don’t seem to finish them.

The unfinished projects are usually offered to another stitcher for completion.

Cross Stitch for Beginners UFO
Angely Dobbs

Embroidery Hoops

Hoops are also popular as tambour frames that consist of a pair of circular rings. They have a metal screw as a tightening device. They will keep your fabric consistent while stitching.

A large hoop will fit the whole design and a small hoop will be easy to handle, so choosing the best size of embroidery hoop depends on the personal choice.

Embroidery Kits Wooden Hoops

Scroll Frames

Scroll frames consist of extender bars, tightening knobs, and scroll rods. They enable stitchers to take a long project.

Just roll the excess around the rod to sew a particular working surface. Then after completed, advance the rod to continue the next section.

The Danish Method

It is one of ways to form a cross stitch. This method starts by making one half stitch in one direction and coming back for the other half stitch. It is a great method for stitching without a frame and hoop.

Cross Stitch for Beginners Danish Style

More Ideas :

Those are phrases and words of cross stitch for beginners to keep you informed. Hopefully, the lists help you in learning to stitch. Happy stitching!

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