Cross Country What?

Those that know me well know that I love large full coverage designs. Full coverage designs are usually charted designs based on someone’s artwork or photograph. The charted graphs for these designs are extensive and usually run several pages. Some of the popular companies that produce these types of charts are Heaven and Earth Designs, Mystic Stitch, Golden Kite, Cross Stitch Collectibles, Tilton Crafts, Artecy Cross Stitch, etc. You get the picture…

If you choose to stitch one of these projects it is truly a labor of love. A bulletin board I belong to is encouraging stitchers to try different methods of stitching a page on these full coverage designs. Similar to the stitch along but called a challenge– because it may not be how you normally stitch. The rules are: you can choose any piece you already own, the stitcher had to begin with a new page start, the page had to have a certain stitch count (mine has 7546 stitches), the page had to contain at least 5 colors (mine has over 20), the stitcher had to post a starting picture, a finished page picture and as many pictures as needed to demonstrate that the stitcher stitched one color at a time, oh, and each stitcher had two and a half months to complete the page. Yes, you read me correctly. Each color has to be stitched in its entirety for the page before you can move on to the next color.

This is what is known as cross country stitching. Since I like to start with areas that have lots of solid color and jump around as I like; the hard part will be stitching all of one color before I can move on to the next color. It is interesting to see these pictures develop this way. I had some questions about this method of stitching. Do you start with the color that has the most stitches to it? Or do you start with any color you like?

The one response I received was: pick a color that was all over the page and has good coverage. The benefit of this approach: you’ll have stitched a base color with at least a few stitches in each 10 by 10 grid of the pattern — these stitches will serve as placement guideposts to check placement for the remaining stitches on the page. The next step is to use the color that has the fewest stitches and work your way up to the color with the most stitches.

Not sure which approach I will use but I will keep you posted. I’m curious… how would you approach this challenge?

by Jessica Jones