MARKING CHARTS SO YOU KNOW WHERE YOU'VE STITCHED--I like to use Crayola Twistable Color Pencils to color in my charts as I'm stitching.  This lets me know where I have stitched, and I think it makes the stitching go faster with less mistakes.  I used to use just color pencils, but the Twistable Color Pencils never need sharpening, so if I drop one, the tip is not ruined, and I don't have to find a sharpener.  There are a few different size packs of these pencils to choose from.

THREAD SAVERS & TRAVEL-- I invented these little "thread winder" type gadgets because I always needed a place to store my left-over threads after separating them.  I usually ended up throwing them away because they got tangled etc.  Now, I store them on my THREAD SAVERS.  I have discovered a major benefit to using them!  When we travel in the car--I have all the colors I need for the project pre-wound and then put the wound THREAD SAVERS on a ribbon.  I hang the ribbon on the door handle, so while my husband drives, I can stitch.  All my floss is safely stored on the THREAD SAVERS and at hand and add the separated floss to them easily.

This works well on planes too--just hook the ribbon on the tray hook!  They hang there nicely and are close at hand.

Another tip for stitching in the car is to look up a lot.  It may be slower than stitching at home, but a stitch completed is one step closer to a finished project.


This tip is from Lynn: To have less bulk on the back of your pieces--use 1 longer stand of floss.  Double, then thread the two ends into the needle together, when you go through the fabric catch the loop.  There will be less floss on the back of your stitching.  THIS METHOD WORKS WELL FOR REGULAR FLOSS, BUT I DO NOT SUGGEST IT FOR OVER-DYED FLOSS.


HAND CRAMPS---If you get hand cramps from holding your needlework, try holding a bar of soap in them for a few minutes!  You will be amazed; your cramps will go away!  I've read about putting a bar of soap---not Dove--in your bed for leg cramps,---which I do--and now someone tried it for hand cramps and of course, it works great!


Look for an app for your smart phone, it will help you figure the size of the pattern and the fabric needed for stitching.  Saves time and frustration!


Some customers like to stitch one strand floss over 1 thread linen. If you are using Valdani threads---the three strand balls-- for this, I suggest you run your thread through THREAD HEAVEN or bees wax before stitching. This would probably be a good practice for most floss.

When I have a piece where the floss colors change often, and the floss tails have created some bulk on the back of the fabric; I add 1-2 layers of cotton quilt batting between the stitched piece and the foam core or matt board.  This helps to hide the bulk.  If you plan on adding glass to your frame you will need spacers to keep the fabric from pressing on the glass. I do not add glass, but that is because I take photos for my covers and send models to needlework shows etc. Glass adds extra weight to my shipping cost.