If you are a beginner stitcher prefer to use Aida cloth. Its weave forms clearly distinctive squares in the fabric, which eases the placing of stitches.
Another option is using waste canvas. It forms a grid for stitching which can be easily removed later.
Material Type: Aida Generic White
Sewing Count: 14/inch or 55/100mm
Design Size: 32 x 56 stitches
Sewn Design Size: 2.3 x 4 inches or 58 x 102 mm
Suggested Material Size: 8.2 x 9.9 inches or 208 x 252 mm
Stitch Style: Cross-stitch Using 2 strands
Tension in your stitching is by far the easiest thing to correct, especially if you’re using a hoop – pull tight but not so tight that you stretch the hole at all. If you stitch in hand you have to be more careful.
I find that pulling the thread mostly through and then using my little finger in the hand holding the needle to “flick” the tail the final bit gives perfect tension and is reproducible for each stitch. Pay attention to the tension you’re applying as, if you stitch in different directions or do “patches” of stitching over the piece, you’ll pull it in weird directions.
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