What Does Anchor Mean In Cross Stitch

As an embroiderer, you must ensure that your stitches hold firmly on the fabric you are working on. Cross-stitching and every other form of embroidery should be durable. The durability of embroidery is determined by how the stitches are made.

What Does Anchor Mean In Cross Stitch?

An anchor stitch is a stitch that you make at the beginning and end of your embroidery to hold it in place on your fabric. It is an easy-to-make stitch that allows you to keep your fabric neat by eliminating large knots to hold your stitches.

To keep your embroidery stitches firm and stable, you need an anchor stitch. With this stitch, you are sure that your cross stitch hand embroidery will hold for a long time.

How To Make An Anchor Stitch In Cross Stitching?

Method 1. Loop In Your Garment

Step 1. Prepare your fabric or garment for embroidery. Before you start stitching, make sure that your garment or fabric is washed, dried, and ironed. This ensures that you can see the part of the fabric that you are working on well. It also helps to keep your fabric or garment in a good condition after you have finished embroidering on it.

Step 2. Using your embroidery needle, find and pick out a single strand of fiber from your fabric. This will make sure that the anchor stitch you make will be secure. Since the anchor stitch should be invisible, you don’t have to make it on a large portion of your fabric. Hence why you only need a single fiber.

Step 3. Push your threaded needle through the single strand of fabric fiber. Pull through until only a small portion of your thread is left on the other side. Make sure that you are using an amount of thread that will pass through the single strand easily. Depending on the fabric you are using, you can use two strands of embroidery floss.

Step 4. Go back through the strand as you have already done and pull your needle through it again. This will create a loop. Go around the loop with your thread. Then insert the needle through the loop from the back and pull gently. Once the thread has reached the fabric, you will find that you have made a fine knot. You have successfully made your first anchor stitch.

Step 5. Proceed with cross stitching on your fabric. When you reach the end of your cross stitching, repeat the above steps to make an ending anchor stitch. Anchor stitches ensure that your stitches are held in place in the fabric firmly. This prevents them from unraveling at will and ensures that your hand embroidery is durable.

Step 6. Insert your needle right next to the stitch you made at the end of your cross stitching. Make a small stitch underneath the garment the bring your needle up a small distance away from the anchor stitch. Pull the thread gently until any visible knot on the surface of your fabric disappears.

The anchor stitch is a neat stitch to use to hold your cross stitching firmly onto your fabric. Its knots are not visible on the fabric. Thus it will be difficult for an untrained eye to see where you started and finished your stitching.

Method 2. Knotless Loop Anchor Stitch

Step 1. You will need an Aida fabric that is suitable for cross stitching, embroidery thread, embroidery hoop, and an embroidery needle that is suitable for the fabric count that you are using. Make sure that your fabric is clean and that it doesn’t have any wrinkles on it before you start cross stitching.

Step 2. Hoop your fabric and thread your needle. Embroidery thread has six strands. You will only need one strand for this. Separate the strands of your thread, pick and pull out one. Fold it in half and thread it through your needle with both ends of the thread going in. When the thread goes through the needle, you will notice that it forms a loop at the bottom.

Step 3. On your hooped fabric, start stitching. You will start at the center of the fabric. You will need to mark the center of the hooped fabric before you start stitching for accuracy. At the center of the fabric, bring your needle up from the back of the fabric. Push it up slightly before you push it back down. When pushing the needle back down, use a different hole on the Aida fabric from the one you used to bring it up.

Step 4. When you push your needle back down the fabric, turn your hoop around so that you are looking at the backside of your fabric. Put your needle through the hoop on your thread and gently pull until the loop is on the fabric.

You have made your anchor stitch successfully. You can proceed with your cross stitching confident that your stitches are neat and firmly in place on your embroidery fabric.

Method 3. Anchor Stitch With A Knot

Step 1. Bring all your cross stitching materials together. You need a hoop, embroidery thread and needle, and your Aida cross stitching fabric. Your fabric should be clean and ironed. You can use up to two strands of embroidery thread. Or, you can choose to just use a single strand. Hoop your fabric and get ready to cross stitch.

Step 2. Thread your needle. Once your thread is through the needle, tie a knot at the end of the thread.

Step 3. Bring your needle up from behind the fabric. Pull it all the way through until the knot touches your fabric. Then, using another hole on your fabric, insert the needle back down. Tuen the hoop around. You will observe that your stitch is firm on the fabric.

You have successfully made a knotted anchor stitch.

Step 4. When you have finished cross stitching, turn your hoop around and cut off any excess threads around your knot.

Method 4. Bury Your Thread Anchor Stitch

Step 1. Prepare your fabric by hooping it. Make sure you have Aida fabric or any other fabric that you prefer for cross stitch. Also, make sure that it is clean and ironed.

Step 2. Thread your embroidery needle. You will need a single strand of embroidery floss. Also, make sure that you have the right embroidery needle for the cross stitch fabric that you are using.

Step 3. Make at least a single row of your beginning cross stitch pattern. Before you get your needle back up again, turn your hoop around. Lay the ends of your thread on your Aida fabric at the next hole and push your needle through the fabric. You will do this for several stitches before you have buried the full tail of your thread.

You have successfully made an anchor stitch without a knot for your cross stitching.

How To Change Colors When Cross Stitching?

Cross-stitching projects may need you to use different colors of thread. This makes for an appealing final product, especially if you are using an already existing cross stitching pattern. Therefore, you need to know how and when to change thread colors.

Map out your pattern on the fabric. Note every point of the pattern that requires a color change. Then make sure that you have near you all the color threads that you will need.

When cross stitching always start your stitches at the middle of your hooped fabric. Anchor your initial stitches and proceed until you get to the point where need to change thread colors. Your last stitch in one color should end with your needle down.

Cut off the thread. Thread your needle in a different color thread. At the point where you ended the previous stitch, start the new one in a new color thread. Bring your needle from the bottom to the top in the new color. Anchor your new color thread stitches and proceed until you need to change colors again.

How To Read A Cross Stitch Pattern?

An experienced cross stitch embroiderer understands how to read and follow a given cross stitch pattern. This enables them to reproduce the pattern onto fabric as it is on paper.

To successfully read a cross stitch pattern, you need to understand it first. A cross stitch consists of the following things that help you understand how to make it.

First, it has gridlines. These are thick lines that mark sections of the cross stitch pattern. They can indicate the use of different colors or thread thicknesses on the pattern. They are usually in a 10 by 10 grid of stitches on the Aida fabric. Thus, they are easy to follow.

The cross stitch pattern also has colors and symbols. These signify sections of the cross stitch pattern with different colors and thread thickness.

You also have arrows on patterns. Arrows indicate the direction in which your stitches are moving. Some sections of the cross stitch may move up, down, or sideways.

Finally, your cross stitch pattern has a key. The key unpacks the pattern. It enables you to understand the pattern. It explains the grids, the colors, and even how many strands of embroidery floss you need to stitch different sections of the pattern.



I'm Jessica Flores, a professional fashion designer and an expert seamstress. Crafting has always been a deep-seated passion of mine, one that has flourished and evolved over the years. I've dedicated considerable time to both studying and practicing in the realm of fashion and sewing, amassing a wealth of experience and skills. It brings me great joy to share these insights and experiences with you all, hoping to inspire and foster a similar passion for the art of sewing.

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