Thursday, 8 August 2013

Cross Stitch Jargon Buster

A lot of people on forums use cross stitching jargon that newcomers to the craft will not understand.  I have been cross stitching for about 15 years and when I joined the online community I had no idea what people were talking about.  What's frogging?  How do you know if you are stitching confetti?  So I thought I'd do a little jargon busting guide that people could look at and get answers to their questions about cross stitching Jargon!


This stands for the cross stitch patterns by All Our Yesterdays.

Artist Trading Card (ATC)

An artist trading card is a small cross stitch design on a small card, normally the size of a playing card.  There are normally exchanges run every month for these types of cards.

Confetti Stitching

This occurs when there are lots of little areas (normally 1-5 stitches) of one colour and you have to keep on changing your thread colour.  This often occurs in more detailed work (such as HAED - see below for what this is!).  The term confetti comes from the fact that the stitches are spread over the fabric, almost as if confetti had been dropped on the aida.


This is an abbreviation for the magazine Cross Stitch Crazy.


This is an abbreviation for the magazine Cross Stitch Card Shop.


This occurs when people get together to exchange cross stitched gifts.  This normally follows a specific theme, such as Christmas or Halloween.  People send their stitched piece, along with a note, to their partner and they also recieve a gift.


Frogging is a term used when a cross stitcher makes a mistake and they are forced to pull out the work that they have done until they fix the mistake.  It is called frogging because you have to 'rip out' the work that you have done and it sounds like a little frog.  You have to RIP IT out RIP IT out RIP IT out.  Sounds quite cute like that!


This is simply an abriviation of the website Heaven and Earth Design.  Heaven and Earth Designs are large, very detailed works that are, in my opinion, absolutely stunning.  They are very intricate works and using only whole cross stitches.  Would be best for a more seasoned cross stitcher!


This is an old cross stitching term and basically means the scraps of thread that are left over from your project.  The ORT stands for Odd Random Threads.


Parking is a unique term in cross stitching but it is not something that everyone does.  Parking refers to the way in which people have multiple needles threaded at once.  People start stitching in one colour and, when they are ready to move on to another, they 'park' the colour and take up a new needle.  Then, when they are ready to come back to the original colour, they can pick it up and start stitching again.  This is not a technique I use personally but it can be very beneficial when you have a large project with lots of confetti stitching!


This is a lovely abbreviation which means Random Act of Kindness.  This happens when someone sends you a random gift, out of the blue, that you were not expected.  Having been the recipient of a RAK, I can say it is a lovelly act and something that people should do more often.

Round Robin (RR)

A round robin is a type of exchange that is organised on a cross stitching forum or website.  In this type of exchange you start stitching a design and then mark out the next sections of the design, depending on how many people are in the Round Robin.  Everyone in the exchange will do this.  You would then forward on your piece to the next person.  At the same time you would recieve another person's stitched piece for you to start on.  When you have done your section, you would then pass it on to the next person.  In these type of exchanges you always send to the same person and always receive from the same person.  In the end your stitched piece will return to you complete!

Stitch Along

A stitch along is again organised on a forum or website.  In this a group of people decide to do the same design at the same time.  They then post pictures online once a week as a form of encouragement.


This is another abbreviation for UnFinished Object.  This refers to any cross stich project that you have started but have not completed (mainly due to picking up another one!)  Unfortunately nothing to do with little aliens! :)


This is an abbreviation that stands for Work in Progress.  This is any project that you are currently working on (note currently working on...otherwuse it's a UFO!)  If you are on cross stitching forums, people will generally use this term when showing pictures of their current work.


This is an abbreviation for the World of Cross Stitching magazine.

Well I hope this jargon buster has been helpful and will help you break through the jargon and get to the real meaning at the bottom. 

Thanks for reading and stay stitchy! x x x

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