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I’ve given this a rating of 1 out of 5 because out of all the crafts that I have tried this was the least taxing on me. If i was feeling okay then it didn’t use up much energy at all. Of course this depends on how/where you craft. I do cross stitch lying down in bed with my work on top of me. If you’re planning on sitting up propped on cushions or at a desk you will be using more energy as sitting upright hunched over work gets tiring very quickly. How much mental energy this takes depends on what you are planning to stitch, if its a simple idea or pattern then you don’t have to use much, especially if you end up just filling in larger areas or straight lines as you don’t have to think about that much.
I’ve given this a higher dexterity rating of 3 out of 5 as you are using needles and they are very small, you have to be able to hold on to them for a long time and threading needles when you change colour and such could be really difficult (you can get threaders that help you with this though). The repetitive nature of this added with the small needle could be difficult or painful for some and there isn’t really anything you can do about the small needle like you can with other crafts like crochet or needle felting.
I’ve given this a 1 out of 5 as you really don’t need to know much technique to get started. It can be pretty confusing if you are buying all your supplies separately, but if you buy a cross stitch kit then all your supplies are….supplied, and all you have to do is get started. You may want to look up how to secure a thread when you start using it and when you’re finishing with it but that’s all you need to know to get started. This website has thousands of great cross stitch kits from just a few pounds for the small ones, if you’re just starting then go for a simpler one (not the massive pictures with loads of colours!) and you’ll be stitching away in no time.
I’ve given this a 3 out of 5 rating because although there aren’t many new stitches or techniques that you need to learn there are other things that can get difficult or confusing. Like I mentioned in the last part, the supplies and equipment you need is quite difficult to get your head round. If you’re looking online at all the different types and sizes of needles and fabrics its easy to get confused. But once you’ve found a starting point (kits are good for this) its a bit easier to expand your knowledge step by small step. For example, 14 count Aida fabric is where you should be starting from, this is whats supplied in most kits you buy. But as you get better you can get smaller count fabric which means the ‘squares’ are smaller and more intricate and you can also transfer to any fabric once you’ve got confident. Patterns also get bigger and more complex, spanning many pages and many colours but you can progress as you want to, there are loads of brilliant things to make without getting to advanced.
I’ve given this a 2 out of 5 for cost. Most of the things you need are relatively inexpensive but the cost can add up. You can get lovely kits that are pretty big for around £20, though there are loads of smaller ones you can pick up for much less. If you are buying supplies separately, then you will need to buy the thread colours that you want (DMC is the most commonly used brand and they cost 69p each from sewandso), Aida fabric to work on (depending on the size you buy, this starts from £5.75 but you could buy a larger amount and cut it down to size), and a pack of needles which only cost a couple quid and should last you a while. Optional accessories include an embroidery hoop to hold your work on, I use one as I find it easier to work with the fabric but you may prefer not to, scissors, storage for threads and other aids such as a lamp and magnifying glass or aids that hold the work for you. These can all add up but the initial outlay to give it a go to see if you like it isn’t that much. If you decide you like the craft then you can buy patterns that you want to make, design your own or there are free resources online too.