You can find my parking tutorial here
What is Gridding?
Gridding is the process of dividing a piece of fabric into 10x10 stitch blocks corresponding to the divisions on a cross stitch pattern, which helps prevent counting errors. In patterns where there are a large number of colour changes and very compact stitches, counting errors happen often and are difficult to fix due to the size and density of the stitching.
Gridding is one of the techniques that I saw referred to a lot when I first started stitching Heaven and Earth Design (HAED) patterns. HAED patterns are large, complex charts which have high detail but are often stitched on a small count fabric, such as over 1 on 25ct or 28ct. My first attempt progressed at a snail's pace because I frequently missed stitches, requiring a lot of backtracking. When I began gridding, all that changed.
What to use to grid your fabric:
Some stitcher's sew the grid onto the fabric but I found it aggravating to try to avoid catching the gridding threads under my stitching . Instead I use a washable fabric marker, which I find quicker and easier. For this method you need; fabric cut to size, a washable fabric marker, a ruler (below is a seam gauge, but an ordinary ruler or tape measure will work) and a pin.
First: Make sure the marker you choose is washable. Fade over time markers generally vanish too quickly, which would lead to re-gridding your fabric multiple times. When you start gridding, please make sure the pen you are using is your WASHABLE marker.
Second: Test your chosen marker on a piece of scrap fabric and try washing it out. Some need a bit of a warm wash to remove them. If cold water doesn't work, try heating the water slightly.
Third: Do not use the fabric marker on hand dyed fabrics unless you are certain they are colour fast. Also it is difficult to know how the marker might react with the fabric dyes.
I usually grid fabric by pattern page rather than doing the whole piece at once. I have found that over time and with repeated handling the washable marker will start to fade slightly.
Start by laying the fabric on a flat surface and make sure that you are comfortable. After a while it can be difficult count the holes in the fabric, so I often I use a pin to help me.
Step 1: Measure your fabric border. For large pieces I plan to frame, I leave 3 inches excess on all sides. Measure in 3 inches from the upper left and the same from the top and mark these points on your fabric.
|Measure in three inches from the left|
|Mark this on your fabric|
|Measure 3 inches from the top|
|Mark this on your fabric|
Step 2: Mark where the two measurements intersect.
|Mark where the two measurements meet|
|Count across 10 strands from where you marked your fabric|
|Draw in your page edge line and your first grid line|
|Count across your next 10 strands for your second grid line|
|Draw in your second grid line the same as the first|
Step 6: Add an additional 1 or 2 columns to make subsequent pages easier to grid.
|Continue on until you have marked in all your grid lines plus a couple extra for the next page|
|Count down ten strands and mark in your first horizontal grid line, mark the border at the top of the page if you wish|
|Draw your lines a little past the last vertical grid line to make continuing the grid for the next page easier|
|Here shows that my vertical lines where a bit short so I simply drew them a bit longer to finish gridding the page|
|First page is now fully gridded with some extra rows and columns to make subsequent gridding easier|
|Now you are ready to start stitching|