Needlepoint Questions Answered

Do you have a needlepoint question you’d like answered free?

Just use my free Ask Janet service. I’ll do my best to answer your question and, if I can’t I’ll give you ideas of places to find the answer.

I’ve helped hundreds — why not you?


  1. fran says

    When I buy a canvas I usually rely on the advice of some one who is more knowledgeable than I am.
    However this time I am going to work on an 18 count canvas and was given a #8 thread but it is not covering the canvas.
    I think a #5 would cover well. What is your general rule of thumb to determine thread for canvases(mostly cotton threads).
    Should it be a 3 or 5 with polished cotton. I have looked thru my books and can not seem to find any guide lines.
    Thank you

  2. says

    Fran —

    Most books only give the most general of guidelines because this information varies. While most stitchers would find #8 perle too thin for 18 mesh, others might like the lighter coverage or may stitch with a tension that allows them to use this thinner thread.

    The stitch you are using can also affect this. Straight stitches, for example,always need slightly thicker thread.

    Finally the thread might fit, but the thickness of it might look wrong for your canvas.

    Even so, there are some guidelines for stitch coverage. These work for most stitchers for most stitches. And make a great starting point for your stitching. But don’t be afraid to adjust based on what you like.

    Here are some guidelines for common threads:

    Floss (silk or cotton):
    3-4 strands on 18-mesh canvas
    6 strands on 13- & 14-mesh canvas
    #8 on 24-mesh (Congress Cloth)
    #5 on 14- & 18-mesh
    #3 on 12- & 13-mesh
    Crewel Wool:
    2 strands on 18-mesh
    3 strands on 13- & 14-mesh
    4 strands on 12-mesh
    Persian Wool:
    1 strand on 14- & 18-mesh (straight stitches might need more)
    2 strands on 13- & 14-mesh
    3 strands on 12-mesh

    This is a starting point, your results may vary.

    Keep Stitching,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>