Most needlecrafts are touted for their calming and meditative properties, but I think cross stitch might be even more relaxing than other crafts in a way because it is so slow. You have to have patience for a pattern to materialize stitch by stitch, and nothing makes you more in the moment than making a picture one movement at a time.
Leah Lintz took this idea to the next level with her book Cross-Stitch to Calm: Stitch and De-stress with 40 Simple Patterns.
She calls her patterns bold, cheerful and graphic, and they’re definitely not frilly or girly like traditional cross-stitch patterns. They often include colorwork, like a striped elephant or a checkered crab, that makes them a little more interesting to knit and gives them a fun look. She also skips columns or rows of stitching regularly to make stripes without having to use a second color.
The patterns are divided into categories such as creatures, nature, symbols and words. There are all sorts of interesting patterns here that will suit a lot of tastes, from beach motifs to animal heads, stylistic flowers and fruits to hearts, guitars and words like eat, family and home.
Projects are shown with large charts and a color stitched sample, though any colors can be changed to suit the thread you have at home or the colors in your decor.
There are a lot of cute things here I’d love to stitch to decorate around the house or use on cards or in other ways. These designs seem like they would be interesting and entertaining without being too much of a challenge, the perfect thing for TV stitching or when you just need to wind down.
About the book: 112 pages, paperback, 40 patterns. Published February 2016 by Interweave/F+W, suggested retail $16.99