How to Use Counting Pins in Your Cross Stitch

So we had a discussion on Facebook and here about using counting pins, especially on larger projects. I mentioned that I was looking at ordering some and wanted to hear everyone’s experiences. In an effort to better understand the whole concept of using counting pins in counted cross stitch I turned to Tommye J Bunce (aka TJB Designs) and asked for a brief explanation of how these beautiful tools worked to make our stitching easier……

(by the way, hop over to http://facebook.com/tjbdesigns and give her fan page a “like” if you haven’t already)




—–TJB counting pins explanation for cross stitchers—–

Counting pins are a must for anyone who does counted thread embroidery. They will scare away that ugly frog!! The tips are blunt like tapestry needles, so they won’t split the threads of your fabric. Rubber earring nuts are used to hold the pins in place.

The most common way to use them is when moving from one stitched area to another spot where you want to start stitching. For instance, if your next stitching point is 12 stitches left and 15 stitches down from completed stitch “A”, using the counting pin to count 12 stitches to the left of stitched point A. Insert the counting pin into that hole, bring it back up 2 or 3 stitches away and put the nut on the pin to anchor it. Take a second counting pin and count down 15 stitches from where the first pin was inserted. Insert the second pin at that point and anchor it. Then you can thread your needle and start stitching.

TIP: if you are truly paranoid, pick a completed stitch “B” in a different area, and figure out how far your new stitching point is from point B.

Repeat the counting and marking process, as before, from point B. If you come up in the same place as you did when counting from point A, you’re ready to go. If you don’t, recount. If you still don’t, you probably made a mistake in your previous stitched area somewhere between A and B. (you probably weren’t using counting pins then. LOL)

Another popular use is when stitching long bands or rows. Insert a counting pin every 25 or 50 stitches, or whatever number you are comfortable with. That way you don’t have to count the whole row over and over again trying to figure out when you are done.

This photo isn’t a good demonstration of the counting and marking process, but it does show how to anchor them.

And, of course, all are welcome to visit my Etsy shop for more counting pins, many of which are color coordinated with (super pretty) scissor fobs. http://etsy.com/shop/tjbdesigns

And to keep up with new products, be a fan of TJBdesigns Facebook page. http://facebook.com/tjbdesigns


A special thank you to TJB Designs for this great explanation and for getting me off the fence about ordering a set of counting pins. Actually, two sets. I ordered these and these from TJB Designs Etsy shop on Sunday afternoon. I figured if I didn’t get to stitch I could at least shop for stitching goodies!

I grabbed both the large and small size because even though I usually stitch on evenweaves and would be using the small size pins, I do have a project coming up in my stash that I think those large pins will come in handy for – besides that they were pretty and they matched! You know how that goes 😉

As always, happy stitching everyone!
Loretta


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