Tag Archives: alphabet

how to never need to buy birthday cards again…

12 Jun

cross-stitch… that is the answer. Learn how to do it and you’ll never need to buy a card again. Ever. For some excellent tips on the basics of cross-stitching and a guide to getting started I point you now in the direction of my dear friend Sophie Brown. Her post is so perfect I don’t need to do one! Hopefully together we can inspire you to pick up a needle and thread and begin your cross-stitch journey. Just think of all the wonderful personalised cards you can make, filled with lots of love and thought and home-made-ness.

Once you’ve decided that cross-stitch is your new hobby/love/passion/obsession (it quickly will become one!) and that you want to make your loved ones cards of all varieties than your first step is to purchase some blank card and envelopes. Husband and I had loads of brown paper card left over from DIY-ing our wedding stationary (invitations and thank you cards) so I’ve used those which you can purchase here (cards above made on ‘ribbed brown’ variety). Or just try online/ebay/hobbycraft/local craft stores to find whatever coloured/patterned card you fancy.

In terms of making a cross-stitched card I have two methods- fabric based and plastic based. The four at the top of this post are what I call plastic based. For these ones I pick a particular small motif/character/design that I think will work and stitch it onto plastic canvas. I purchase this from Sew and So (an excellent online cross-stitch shop which has literally everything you need and for cheap!) and it’s £1.50 a sheet. I can get about 8-15 motifs suitable for cards from one sheet (depending on the size). Most of my inspiration comes from CrossStitcher magazine- I got a subscription too it as a birthday present and it has amazing charts and ideas which I love to use. Once I’ve finished stitching the design I have chosen I carefully cut it out leaving a small border. This is the nerve-wracking part but if you take it slow and steady all should be fine! I love using plastic canvas because it is sturdy and doesn’t fray and gives a kind of solidity to your designs. I secure my finished bits to the card using double sided sticky tabs which I purchase off ebay. I then like to annotate my card with a white gel pen but that’s personal preference!

The second method I use is to stitch on fabric (aida) instead of plastic. There’s less cutting out in this one and it enables you to cross stitch words and phrases which is primarily why I use it. These two patterns above are my own designs and I want to inspire you all to have a go at making your own too! It’s so simple. I print off graph paper from the internet and use a pencil to draft ideas. For the letters CrossStitcher magazine give you an alphabet chart each issue or you could try searching online. Get creative with designing you own little logos and emblems, practice makes perfect and you can rub out any mistakes remember! Once I’ve finished a design I then either cut away the card and fix the aida onto it (like a frame- see ‘ring on it’ design) or fray the edges of the aida and just stick that straight onto the card (see ‘thank you’ design).

So there you have it… the FamilyFordham guide to cross stitched card making. Easy, cheap, fun and full of love.


(p.s. if you need any extra help/tips/links to make your own cards just comment below and let me know!)

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