XStitch Magazine Review

xstitch magazine cover winter 2017

On our series covering the best cross stitch magazines we review the newest, and most contemporary mag, XStitch.
To do this review we’ve compiled a series of reviews from industry leaders, as well as feefo reviews.
xstitch magazine cover 1
Traditionally cross stitch gets the rep of being about teddies, flowers and all things cottage, however following the end of a few eminant cross stitch mags, Mr X Stitch, a previous pattern designer for the CrossStitcher magazine decided to take on a new challenge, and make a cross stitch magazine for all the young contemporary stitchers. As a direct result, the mag has a very different edge to its competitors, offering stylish pages, well written content, and a great heap of important cross stitchers (the first magazine had 12 designers from all over the world, including Jane Greenoff and Emily Peacock).
 

How has no one ever made a magazine like this before?! THIS is what I want.

instagram

Inside you’ll find only 20 patterns, but each will be crafted to a specific and topical theme each edition. Up to 50 designers submit patterns and only the best are chosen. These are then converted into 4 pattern types which are all downloadable with the mag. In addition to the usual content such as topical articles and reviews there is also an online playlist chosen by the designers to listen to as you read.
The biggest thing you’ll notice however, is there aren’t any adverts. The magazine has been put together for the readers, and its not full of filler.
 
As the only contemporary magazine on the market, it will either appeal or not, however I think that’s its charm.
 
$7 per quarter; all copies come with digital and print versions, downloadable patterns in 3 formats and online playlist
 

Loads of patterns
Lots of mainstream patterns
Large readership
Not many modern patterns
Expensive outside of the UK
Not many freebies

Score: 9.9/10
142 reviews on feefo

 
 
If you liked this review, but you’re looking for something a bit more traditional you might like our review of the CrossStitcher, or The World Of Cross Stitching review.

What is the best cross stitch magazine?

cross stitch favourites magazine cover

There are loads of cross stitch magazines out there, and with magazines like Cross Stitch and Needlework and Cross Stitch Collection coming to and end, I felt it was a good time to go through some of the most popular cross stitch magazines out there and give a bit more detail so you can pick the best one for you.

CrossStitcher

crossstitcher magazine cover
$2 – $6 per month; digital and print

Currently the second most popular cross stitch magazine out there, but on the rise, CrossStitcher focuses on modern cross stitch. The contemporary, bright, bold designs are better suited to a 16-50 age bracket, with great finishing ideas, and loads of freebies every issue. Its also the only magazine to offer a digital only option, which at $2 is a steal in itself, although with a physical copy for only $6 it might be worth getting that, as you get the digital copy for free.
Many prominent artists have been featured, including myself back in 2012, 2013 and 2015
Score 9.4/10
Full CrossStitcher review

The World Of Cross Stitching

the world of cross stitching magazine cover$6 – $12 per month; digital and print

The World of Cross Stitching (or TWOCS as its sometimes known) is the longest running cross stitching magazine in world wide production, and you can see why quite quickly; its very mainstream. If this is what you’re looking for then its a great magazine, full of patterns, and the largest in size on the list. It plays up on being British for the American market, and so as a Brit you might find it a little unrealistic, but it has lots of other animal, teddy, flower, heart, etc based patterns. They theme on seasons heavily, to the point where every issue is a holiday of some kind. They include free items, but these tend to be knickknacks and not pattern stitching items, however they do include waste canvas often, which can be hard to get your hands on. In recent years its started to struggle as people have moved to other magazines on the list, however still commands a massive following.
Score 9.2/10
Full The World Of Cross Stitching review

Cross Stitch Crazy

cross stitch crazy magazine cover
$12 – $14 per month; print only

Cross Stitch Crazy is a very similar magazine to The World Of Cross Stitching, however tends to appeal to the English market better, with less American holidays, less playing up to being British and more kit giveaways. However, its main draw back, which people are very vocal about is its Christmas period. For the three months leading, all the magazines are devoted to Christmas. This tends to get on people’s nerves a bit. Other than that, its a good magazine, but it might be worth a flick through before buying each month as its a bit hit and miss.
Score 8.3/10

Cross Stitch Gold

cross stitch gold magazine cover
$7 – $9 per month; print only

Cross Stitch Gold appeals to the established stitcher, with sometimes VERY complex and large patterns, focuses towards traditional. All the patterns are from established designers, such as Joan Elliott, and most of the projects will take you more than a month to finish. There are no freebies, and most patterns are focused on landscapes, portraits, houses, fairies, samurai, etc much like traditional cross stitch patterns.
Score 8.0/10

Cross Stitch Favourites

cross stitch favourites magazine cover
$5 – $8 per quarter; print only

A new comer to the cross stitch magazine scene, its demographic is hard to pin down. Almost every cover has “cute” written on it in large, and patterns tend to side with teddy bears and baby congratulations. Its only been going a year, and doesn’t theme for seasons, but barely comes with any free gifts, and never includes enough to make a pattern from the mag.
Score 6.1/10

Enjoy Cross Stitch

enjoy cross stitch magazine cover
$11 – $14 per month; print only

Enjoy Cross Stitch Magazine is a new magazine, out less than a year, and clearly aimed at getting young girls into cross stitch. The patterns are all very easy, oriented towards pink, and the magazine comes with enough included to get at least 3 patterns made. Each magazine is themed, but never seasonal. However, of all the magazines on the list, its the only one that has a lot of “other” magazine content. You’re likely to find interviews with popular artists, snippets from books, and quizzes not related to cross stitch.
Score 4.9/10

XStitch

xstitch magazine cover 1
$7 per quarter

Made by MrXStitch this kickstarter based magazine was created as a direct opposite to the girly magazines the scene is full of. Its simple message, is bringing cross stitch up to date, with very modern patterns, and features that a lot of magazines don’t have; such as everyone gets print and online versions, with larger patterns to see better, a podcast of songs to go with all the patterns, a online community for further support and showing off, etc. Unlike the rest of the entries on the list XStitch is not full of patterns by one main designer, but instead each issue has 12 different designers from around the world (including people like Jane Greenoff and myself), specifically chosen for the themes, which are must more radical than the usual.
Score 9.9/10

Just Cross Stitch

just cross stitch magazine cover
$7 per month; print only; USA only

The only US only magazine on the list, Just Cross Stitch has been going just over 30 years, and has had a bit of a rocky start since it was sold last year. The patterns are sometimes inspired, but can occasionally look tired. It has a modern design, and most patterns follow this ideal, and it features lesser known internet cross stitch celebrities. Its big pull is the Christmas ornament issue (not to be confused with the Christmas issue coming out the month after), which includes a large supply of free things, and features nothing but unique ways to make cross stitch ornaments. Its worth looking into if you’re US based, but they currently don’t have any plans to supply the rest of the world.
Score 7.6/10

The World Of Cross Stitching Magazine Review

the world of cross stitching magazine cover

On our series covering the best cross stitch magazines we review the biggest world wide cross stitch magazine, The World Of Cross Stitching.
To do this review we’ve compiled a series of reviews from industry leaders, as well as feefo reviews and at least a year of continuous subscription to the mag.
the world of cross stitching magazine cover
When people think of cross stitch magazines, the first one they think of is The World Of Cross Stitching. Its one of the longest running magazines and has over 44,000 monthly readers, making it the largest international cross stitching magazine. As a result when flicking through, you see mainstream patterns; tailored to make sure they’re are as accessable as possible. Whilst this can appeal to an average cross stitcher, the younger or male cross stitchers tend to feel very underwhelmed by the teddy, flower and heart patterns that adorn most issues.

The teddy was just so cute, it even got my daughter into cross stitching!

facebook

In regards to the content itself, almost all of the patterns are by the four editors/designers who aren’t known for being big players in the field. At least 20% of the magazine is devoted to full page adverts for various companies. The patterns themselves are mostly small (under 5 hours stitching time), with one 24+ hour piece in each issue.

Its market share shows that cross stitch clearly isn’t on they way out, however with its slightly over played British vibe and traditional patterns, its lost market share recently to alternatives like the CrossStitcher which appeals to a younger crowd.

$6 – $12 per month; digital and print

Loads of patterns
Lots of mainstream patterns
Large readership
Not many modern patterns
Expensive outside of the UK
Not many freebies

Score: 9.2/10
17213 reviews on feefo

If you liked this review, or are looking for something similar you might like our review of the CrossStitcher, or a quick review of the biggest cross stitch magazines.

Cross Stitcher Magazine Review

The Cross Stitcher 300th Edition

On our series covering the best cross stitch magazines we review the more modern cross stitch magazine, CrossStitcher.
To do this review we’ve compiled a series of reviews from industry leaders, as well as feefo reviews and at least a year of continuous subscription to the mag.
cross stitcher magazine cover
As the main competitor to The World Of Cross Stitching magazine, the CrossStitcher takes a different angle to the world of cross stitch, with a much more modern take. The patterns are modern, and feature unique ways of finishing stitches, framing, and witty new takes, which allows it to be the main cross stitch magazine for the younger and more modern crowd. They tend to vary patterns inside from 60-90 equally spaced between small, medium, and large patterns. Unlike many other magazines they tend to advertise using actual content, suggesting a site to get a frame, etc instead of full page adverts.

If you like very modern and contemporary designs then that’s probably your best bet. They use lots of bright, bold colours, fun finishing ideas etc

reddit (/r/crossstitch)

They are also well known for the free stuff you get, allowing you to at least complete 2 patterns each issue with the freebies provided, although it should be noted the freebies aren’t the highest quality. Its by far the cheapest magazine on offer at the moment, and there are no high fees to pay for postage, especially so with the digital versions.

The ability to be modern and constantly on the cutting edge is how the patterns are sourced; they ask big players in the cross stitch field such as MrXStitch, Maria Diaz, flossandmischief, Jacqui P, Emily Peacock, and Jane Greenoff (founder of the Cross Stitch Guild) to supply patterns.

$2 – $6 per month; digital and print

Loads of patterns
Lots of mainstream patterns
Large readership
Not many modern patterns
Expensive outside of the UK
Not many freebies

Score: 9.4/10
16421 reviews on feefo

If you liked this review, or are looking for something similar you might like our review of The World Of Cross Stitching, or a quick review of the biggest cross stitch magazines.

The Best Cross Stitch Calculators

yarn tree cross stitch calculator

A cross stitch calculator is basically a requirement for all stitchers. Sure, if you wanted you could do the maths, but who has time? And who want’s to check it three times over to make sure its right? Neh, instead, pull out the calculator.
There are a few out there now, each doing slightly different things. We’re going to roundup all the best ones in one post, with their pros and cons.

The Best – Lord Libidan’s

This post has started for a simple reason; I wasn’t happy with the ones available. So I took all the best features from all of the below calculators and combined them into one. Which we (of course) belive is the best, but we’ve also got loads of support from reddit!

Pattern Size: 

Pattern Size: 

Fabric Count: 

Each stitch covers? 

Extra fabric for border? 

Extra fabric for framing? 

 stitches wide by
 stitches high

 threads per inch

Stitched area will be: 

Stitched area will be: 

Fabric should be: 

Fabric should be: 

 inches wide  inches high

 CM wide  CM high

 inches wide  inches high

 CM wide  CM high

Use a size  cross stitch needle

Use  strands of floss for stitching

Use  strands of floss for backstitch

Cross stitch calculator created by LordLibidan.com 


Yarn Tree

yarn tree cross stitch calculator
Yarntree’s calculator has previously held the title as the best due to its extra features. It allows you to select extra aida a the sides for framing and gives you both inches and centimeters, but it also simplifies this down by just asking it you want it or not, doing all the fancy maths in the background.

Crossstitch.com

crossstitch com cross stitch calculator
The original online calculator, crossstitch.com do a lot right, however with slightly less choice than Yarntree, always comes away without fully doing the job.

Needlework Tips & Tricks

needlework tips and tricks cross stitch calculator
Barely known for anything else, needlework tips & tricks’ calculator has gained a lot of momentum due to it being more mobile compatible than the others mentioned (other than our own), however will a lot less options, tends to be a quick reference calculator to give an approximate, and not exact measurements.

123Stitch

123stitch cross stitch calculator
An extreamly simple calculator, 123stitch tried to link it to a sales procedure that didn’t really work out. Now it serves as the only most basic of sums, which might be better off done in your head.

Best Free Cross Stitch Generators

cross stitch pattern creator software screenshot

Free Online cross stitch generators:

patternsforyou.com (FREE) – 7.5/10

Based on 1042 reviews

myphotostitch.com (FREE) – 7/10

Based on 302 reviews

craftdesignonline (FREE) – 5/10

Based on 46 reviews

Pic2Pat (FREE) – 5/10

Based on 78 reviews

Free iPad cross stitch generator:

Cross Stitch Saga (FREE ($4 upgrade)) – 9/10

Based on 127 reviews

Magic Needle (FREE) – 7/10

Based on 3 reviews

Free download cross stitch generator:

Stitch Art Easy! (FREE) – 4/10

Based on 14 reviews

What’s the best cross stitch pattern software?

I often get asked “What’s the best cross stitch pattern software?” , and it shouldn’t surprise you that there are lots of options. This post details the most used cross stitch programs on PC, Mac, Online and iPad with online polls and feefo review scores. Updated September 2018.

Jump to PC
Jump to PC (Free)
Jump to Online (Free)
Jump to Mac
Jump to iPad & iPhone
Jump to Android
Jump to Android
Jump to Unsupported Replacements

Best PC cross stitch pattern software:

WinStitch ($52 ($47 with discount)) – 10/10

Based on 832 reviews
Use this link to save yourself $5 when you buy!

PC Stitch ($50 ($20 with discount)) – 9/10

Based on 1024 reviews
You should also use the code “PCS11UPG” to save $30 when you buy!

KG Chart ($35) – 8.5/10

Based on 1112 reviews

BlendThreads (FREE) – 8/10

Based on 37 reviews

Istitch 2 ($30) – 7/10

Based on 31 reviews

Sew and So Cross Stitch Designer ($42) – 6/10

Based on 46 reviews

HobbyWare Pattern Maker for cross-stitch ($60) – 6/10

Based on 57 reviews

Ryijy Stitch Designer (FREE) – 6/10

Based on 7 reviews

DP Software Cross Stitch Pro Platinum ($182) – 5/10

Based on 47 reviews

StitchCraft ($155 to $830) – 5/10

Based on 213 reviews

STOIK Stitch Creator ($51) – 5/10

Based on 98 reviews

Stitch Painter ($199/FREE) – 5/10

Based on 23 reviews

ILSoft Stitch R-XP ($99) – 3/10

Based on 13 reviews

Stitch Art Easy! (FREE) – 4/10

Based on 14 reviews

Cstitch (FREE) – 3/10

Based on 4 reviews


Best FREE PC cross stitch pattern software:

BlendThreads (FREE) – 8/10

Based on 37 reviews

Ryijy Stitch Designer (FREE) – 6/10

Based on 7 reviews

Stitch Art Easy! (FREE) – 4/10

Based on 14 reviews

Cstitch (FREE) – 3/10

Based on 4 reviews


Best ONLINE cross stitch pattern software:

stitchfiddle.com (FREE) – 9/10

Based on 1523 reviews

patterncreator.com ($7.50) – 8/10

Based on 257 reviews

patternsforyou.com (FREE) – 7.5/10

Based on 1042 reviews

myphotostitch.com (FREE) – 7/10

Based on 302 reviews

pixel-stitch.net (FREE) – 7/10

Based on 57 reviews

stitchyourphoto.com ($5 per pattern) – 6/10

Based on 4 reviews

The Folklore Company ($9/FREE per pattern) – 6/10

Based on 17 reviews

DMC Snap & Stitch ($10/FREE per pattern) – 6/10

Based on 36 reviews

Thread-Bare ($10 per pattern) – 6/10

Based on 12 reviews

PictureCraftWork ($12 per pattern) – 6/10

Based on 4 reviews

craftdesignonline (FREE) – 5/10

Based on 46 reviews

Pic2Pat (FREE) – 5/10

Based on 78 reviews

StitchBoard (FREE) – 5/10

Based on 13 reviews

Photo2CrossStitch ($5 per pattern) – 5/10

Based on 8 reviews


Best MAC cross stitch pattern software:

MacStitch ($52 ($47 with discount)) – 9/10

Based on 543 reviews
Use this link to save yourself $5 when you buy!

stitchfiddle.com (FREE) – 9/10

Based on 1523 reviews

DP Software Cross Stitch Pro Platinum ($191) – 5/10

Based on 47 reviews

Stitch Painter ($199) – 5/10

Based on 23 reviews


Best iPad & iPhone cross stitch pattern software:

Cross Stitch Saga (FREE ($4 upgrade)) – 9/10

Based on 127 reviews

StitchSketch ($8) – 9/10

Based on 251 reviews

Magic Needle (FREE) – 7/10

Based on 3 reviews

Cross Stitch Camera ($4) – 5/10

Based on 36 reviews


Best ANDROID cross stitch pattern software:

eCanvas for cross-stitch PRO ($3) – 8/10

Based on 92 reviews

XStitch Designer ($1) – 7/10

Based on 220 reviews


Best LINUX cross stitch pattern software:

KXStitch (FREE) – 6/10

Based on 7 reviews


Unsupported Software Replacements:

Photoshop Swatches (PC)

REPLACEMENT: Ryijy Stitch Designer (FREE) – 6/10
The only usable free alternative, Ryijy is open source and works independantly from Photoshop, but with a very similar process.
 

MyriaCross (PC)

REPLACEMENT: WinStitch ($52 ($47 with discount)) – 10/10
MyriaCross gave some of its code to WinStitch, so they could replicate their features. As a result, its the best, and closes alternative.
 

Easy Cross (PC)

REPLACEMENT: WinStitch ($52 ($47 with discount)) – 10/10
Slightly less easy to use, but a full software option.
 

PixelCraft (ONLINE)

REPLACEMENT: stitchfiddle.com (FREE) – 9/10
A slightly improved version of PixelCraft.
 

StitchCraft (MAC)

REPLACEMENT: MacStitch ($52 ($47 with discount)) – 9/10
A similar, but much more advanced program.
 

Spriter (MAC)

REPLACEMENT: stitchfiddle.com (FREE) – 9/10
Just as simple to use, but without the need for installation. In addition has slightly better editing tools.
 

Cross Stitch 2 Go HD (IPAD)

REPLACEMENT: Cross Stitch Saga (FREE ($4 upgrade)) – 9/10
A slight improvement on Cross Stitch 2 Go HD, with a low price tag.
 

X-Stitch (IPAD)

REPLACEMENT: Cross Stitch Saga (FREE ($4 upgrade)) – 9/10
A better alternative app, with more features.
 
 
I’ve also created a great infographic on which is the best cross stitch pattern software for easy selection.