How to Cross-Stitch on Single Crochet

comments (7) September 3rd, 2008     

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LindaPermann Linda Permann, contributor
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When youre finished, weave in the ends on the wrong side of the work.
First, mark off the area you wish to embroider with a contrasting color yarn.
Plot out your design on graph paper.
When youre finished, weave in the ends on the wrong side of the work.

When you're finished, weave in the ends on the wrong side of the work.

Photo: Linda Permann
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Add a personal touch to gifts with a cross-stitched monogram. You can cross-stitch over any area of single crochet with ease—just treat each single crochet stitch like a square on aida cloth (used for cross-stitching). Here I will show you how to plot and execute your design. I am working on a camera case, but this technique really flourishes on larger projects, too. For instance, you could make a pillow and use several different colors of yarn, or write words on a hat or scarf, and you don't have to deal with color changes as you work.

Materials:
• Swatch or item made in single crochet (focus on a straight area of the piece where there are no increases or decreases in any rows—a washcloth would be a good item to start with)
• Contrasting color yarn in similar weight to the swatch
• Blunt yarn needle
• Graph paper (you can print some out for free here)


First, mark off the area you wish to embroider with a contrasting color yarn.

Using a blunt yarn needle, weave a contrasting color yarn through the work to border the area where you want your design. This will make it much easier to count your stitches both now and when you are stitching the design. Count the number of stitches across and the number of rows contained in your design area.


Plot out your design on graph paper.

Mark off the area of stitches on graph paper, according to your count. For instance, 10 rows x 10 stitches would be 10 graph paper rows, each 10 squares wide. The larger the area you have to work with, the more detailed and intricate your design can be. If you are working with a relatively small area, it's best to stick to a linear, graphic design with just one color. I tried the cursive L shown above on my case first, and it was impossible to tell what it was trying to be, so I switched to more structured letters. You can shade in each box to get an idea of what the overall silhouette of your design will look like. If you are working on a larger area, like a pillow, you can even use a traditional cross-stitch pattern for the design—just choose one with the same (or fewer) number of squares as you have stitches.


Begin filling in stitches according to your chart.

Once you settle on your design, begin making cross-stitches in the work. For instance, my L begins one row from the left border and three rows from the top, so I made my first stitch there.

Use the four small holes, one in each corner of each sc stitch, as the guide for your cross-stitches. Starting on the wrong side of the work, poke your needle out through one corner, then into the diagonal corner. Bring the needle back through to the front in one of the two yet unused corners, and poke it back through the last remaining corner to cross the stitch. If you are working a line of stitches, you can work all of the diagonals for the span of the line, then come back and cross each stitch, bringing the yarn back to where you started—this is more efficient and less messy, but depending on the size of your design, it might not really matter.

Make sure you pull each stitch taut but not too tight. If you make a stitch and it looks too long, chances are you inserted your needle in the wrong hole—just pull out the yarn and try again.

 


When you're finished, weave in the ends on the wrong side of the work.

Continue to fill in your stitches according to the chart until you are finished. Weave in the ends on the wrong side of the work.

 

See more of my projects on my personal blog, and look for my new book, Crochet Adorned, in stores August 11, 2009.

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Comments (7)

MarieKW writes: On a blanket you could keep the back side pretty by stitching through the middle of each crochet stitch (splitting the background yarn with your embroidery needle) instead of around the back of each stitch. Then your embroidery yarn will barely show at all on the back.
Posted: 5:38 am on July 10th
MarieKW writes: I did basically the same thing a couple years ago when I made myself a cell-phone case and a case for an mp3 player without using a "pattern". Just crocheted and kept checking the size by sliding the phone in.

I'd recommend making your bag "a little too tight" so that when it stretches with use, it will still be a nice fit and won't let the camera, cell phone, or whatever flop around.

You can get even more creative here... one thing I have done is use a super-fuzzy yarn for the bag, crochet ears and sew them on the top fold, then embroider on some facial features on the flap and have a camera case "critter!"
Posted: 5:36 am on July 10th
LindaPermann writes: eeyores dragon- do you mean a cross stitch on crochet blanket? I think trying to keep the back side nice might lead to insanity, my only suggestion is to line it with something (but if it is indeed a crochet blanket, that may well defeat the purpose). as long as you weave in your ends well and don't make any one stitch too far from the last (so there aren't long bits of yarn between pieces) i think most people will understand that that's the back and it's not going to look the same as the front. good luck!
Posted: 7:01 pm on December 18th
eeyoresdragon writes: I have a question im making a blanket with cross stitich, ok what do i do with the wrong side of the blanket? i have tried to make the x's the same on both sides but no go. Is there a trick to this. If anymore has any ideas i sure would like to hear them.

cute pouch by the way
thanks
Posted: 7:10 pm on December 15th
mariolle writes: Great Idea! I'm going to use it for Christmas gifts!
Posted: 10:39 am on November 9th
LindaPermann writes: Craftaholic- I didn't write up a pattern for the pouch, but here's how you do it. Make a rectangle from single crochets that's slightly bigger than the side of your camera. Single crochet around the edge of the rectangle, and keep adding rounds of single crochet (just 1 single crochet into each stitch from the previous round) until the pouch is as tall as your camera (keep placing it inside as you go so you can tell how much it stretches, etc). Once the pouch reaches the desired height, work single crochets in rows back and forth on one of the long sides of the rectangle to get the flap. When the flap is about as long as you want, do a row of sc, but ch 2 or 3 stitches in the middle of the row and skip the sc stitches below to make the buttonhole, then continue to single crochet across. Add 1 or 2 more rows of sc, then sc around the flap and opening with an alternating color to finish. I hope that gives you an idea of how to make it- perhaps I will post a tutorial in the coming weeks.
Posted: 2:08 pm on September 22nd
Craftaholic writes: That's an awesome idea! Do you have the crochet pattern available for the little pouch?
Posted: 3:07 am on September 21st
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