Cross Stitch Terms and Acronyms Defined

Cross Stitch Terms Defined

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There are TONS of cross stitch terms out there.

I learned how to cross stitch when I was 10 years old, and even at 35 I still didn’t know many cross stitch terms.

When I discovered the world of FlossTube and Facebook Cross Stitch Groups I sat dumbfounded trying to figure out what this “LNS” everyone was talking about and why I couldn’t find that craft store chain anywhere.

So in this post I’m going to explain what different cross stitch terms mean. Hopefully you won’t be trying to find the craft store chain LNS like I was 🙂 Or maybe you won’t be wondering things like:

What does aida mean?

Why does every cross stitcher seem to hate frogs so much?

Where is that freaking LNS brand everyone keeps going on about?

Why do stitchers want to “WIP”?

Why are stitchers so obsessed as to if the others use the railroad?

Why are some cross stitchers so confused about parking a car?

Cross Stitch Terms Cross Stitchers Need to Know

Aida – This is the most commonly used fabric for cross stitch. It has evenly spaced holes where you put your thread through to make x’s in cross stitch.

Back Stitch – This is a stitching method used in cross stitch to outline shapes and it is usually in a darker color.

BAP – Big Ass Project.

Blending Filament – these are threads that sparkle or glisten and are used either alone or with regular thread colors.

Chart – This is your pattern for your cross stitch.

Confetti – These are stitches in cross stitch that are usually just a stitch or 2 and scattered around the pattern. Confetti can also be an area where the stitcher had to keep changing colors of thread frequently.

Cross Country – This is the opposite of parking. With Cross country stitching you complete stitches that are far away from the others sometimes finishing an entire color throughout a project until continuing onto the next.

Evenweave – This is another type of fabric that is popular in cross stitch. It is softer than aida and has a higher fabric count. The weave is even in this fabric making all squares the same.

Fabric Count – This is referring to the number of holes in each inch of cross stitch fabric. Aida cloth usually has a lower count than evenweave or linen.

FFO – Fully Finished Object or Finally Framed Object

FlossTube – This is on YouTube, it’s where stitchers talk about stitching, showing their current projects, finished projects, and stitchy hauls. Some even have stitch with me’s where they talk while videoing their stitching.

Fractional Stitches – fractional stitches are just that a fraction of a stitch. They are usually used to smooth edges instead of having sharp corners from full crosses. Fractional stitches can be 1/4 or 3/4.

French Knot – These are small knots that are made by rapping the cross stitch thread around the needle and then pulling your needle down through your fabric. These are the bane of many stitchers existence, and it’s ok to hate them with a passion.

Frogging/Frog – Frogging is when you made a mistake on your stitching and you have to remove/rip out stitches to fix it. When this happens stitchers will say the frog has come to visit.

FS – Forgotten Stash. If you are a stitcher then you will understand how often this happens!

Full Coverage – This type of cross stitch is where the entire area is made of stitches, there are no places where the fabric shows through.

HAED – This stands for Heaven And Earth Designs. They are a company that designs cross stitch patterns based off artists paintings/works. All HAEDs are full coverage and can be very large.

Half Cross Stitch – This is where you only do a half of a cross stitch instead of a full stitch. So instead of having a “X” you will have a “/”.

Haul – just like beauty and fashion, stitchers have hauls too.

Linen – Linen is another type of fabric used in cross stitch. It usually has the highest fabric count when it comes to cross stitch fabrics. It is made from linen thread and woven to allow you to make cross stitch squares. Linen is more traditional looking and not always even at all times, it can be harder to stitch on for some stitchers.

LNS – Local Needlework shop/store. These are locally/individually owned (“mom and pop”) needlework stores. You will find a much better selection of patterns, floss and fabric for cross stitch in LNSs vs Big Brand-name Craft Stores like Micheals or JoAnns.

Homemade Needle minder _ DIY Needle Minder
This is one of my homemade needle minders that I made from a broach necklace I ordered off

Needle Minder – These are small and cute things with a magnet. They can be made from anything that you want that’s small and then the magnets are used to keep it on your stitching project and also hold the needle when you aren’t using it.

ONS – Online Needlework Shop

ORT – Old Raggedy Threads or Orphaned Random Threads. These are the clippings that are left over from your projects. Sometimes stitchers like to keep these and make Christmas ornaments out of them.

Parking – This is a method used in cross stitch where instead of stitching one color and then starting another color once finished with your thread, you stitch in rows or columns (some people also do diagonal) leaving the thread color in the next place you will stitch it once you are done with it in that row/column. This technique is usually used on large cross stitch peices, especially HAEDs or full coverage.

PHD – Projects Half Done.

Railroad Stitching – This is where when stitching back down through your fabric you take your needle and put it between the thread strands. This helps stitches lay flatter and look better, also some say it helps reduce tangling of the thread.

RAK – Random Act of Kindness. This is where stitchers send gifts to other stitchers.

Round Robin – aka RR – this is where a project is passed around from person to person until it is complete. Sometimes done locally other times stitchers will mail the project to others in the round robin.

SAL – Stitch Along. There are tons of these, you can find many on Facebook in the Facebook Cross Stitching Groups.

Slug – These are on linen fabric, they are where the woven linen fibers get bigger in places.

Stash – As with any crafter, cross stitchers tend to collect lots of patterns, fabrics and thread, this is their stash.

Stitch Buddy – these are you cute pets that like to sit with you when you stitch, and sometimes sit on your patterns or projects.

Tweeding – This is where you use strands of different colors instead of the same color to stitch. Think of it as blending colors.

UFO – Unfinished Object.

WIP – Work In Progress. (WIPs is just plural)

#WIPwednesday – this is a hashtag that is popular on Instagram and other social media, where stitchers share their current projects (WIPs) on each Wednesday.

Cross Stitch Terms & Acronyms Defined #crossStitch

Whew! That’s all for right now. I’m sure there might be some in there I forgot.

If there’s any you can think of let me know down below and I’ll get it added!

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