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Want to design your own cross stitch pattern?

We have a bank of templates for various designs. But what if you want to make your own pattern, with your own text, icon or pattern? Well, no problem! It can seem a bit overwhelming if you're new to cross stitch, but there are a number of ways to design your own stitches to make something unique. 


Your Canvas

The first step is understanding how big your canvas is, ie. how many holes you have along the length and width of your item. This will determine how many crosses you can fit (and may rule out more complex designs that require a larger canvas). 

If using a Chasing Threads item, we will put the grid count on the product page. But you can always just count the holes if in doubt (this is the same for using normal cross stitch Aida fabric). 

As an example - our Star Sign Envelope has 50 holes along the top and 37 holes along the side.  

Star Sign Envelope canvas

So the grid will be 50 x 37, as you can see mapped out on our example template for the Star Sign Envelope. 

Making your template 

Now you have the grid size, you can go the old fashioned way and use grid paper, or print out our empty templates to sketch your design on paper.

Or, you can use something like an Excel spreadsheet and colour in the squares to make your design, like this laptop sleeve made by @Megcookie96

My advice as a beginner would be to use an online embroidery design tool, such as this one by our friends at Folklore Company. It lets you add in pre-made icons, text and patterns so the hard work is done for you. 


Keep in mind that you can mix cross stitch (represented by squares), and normal simple stitches for a variety of effects, like the design below.

Once you've made your pattern, you can download it, count your stitches and simply follow it - with the knowledge that the design will fit nicely on the canvas!  

So have fun, and try some new patterns to make some really personal and unique designs 😍

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