Freakily Asked Questions

What happened? Is this still the Subversive Cross Stitch I know and love?  

Yes! We finally revamped our website after too many years. Everything is still the same behind the scenes—hopefully even better!


Do I have to create an account to shop now?

NO! You can check out as a guest or you have the option to create an account. Creating an account will allow you easy log-in for future visits, you can check on past orders and you won't have to enter a shipping address every time. To create an account, simply designate a password on the Thank You page after you place your first order. Please note that the phone number field is optional. I won't prank call you, don't worry!


What happens when I buy a PDF from you?

PDFs are delivered directly via email once you pay and check out. Downloads are limited, so PLEASE download and save each PDF to your computer, otherwise I end up spending all my time re-sending orders. Ack!

Each PDF is just like a pattern in any of our kits: one side features a full-color pattern; the other side includes instructions. You can read the PDF from your portable device or print it out to use again and again.

Of course, PDFs aren’t to be shared because they are copyrighted designs sold for on a single-use basis. By not re-distributing these patterns, you're keeping my small home business going. I appreciate your honesty and restraint! Who needs bad karma, right?


What's in a kit? How is the Basic Kit different from the Deluxe Kit? 

Both kits have a full-color pattern, instructions, thread and material. The Deluxe Kit also includes a wooden hoop and two needles. The material is 14-count silver-grade white Charles Craft, which I have professionally die-cut with zig-zag edges to prevent messy fraying. The thread is DMC six-strand cotton (so you can easily find the colors at any craft store) and the needles are size 24 tapestry. In 2012, we switched from clumsy, hard-to-print and shop-fragile paper envelopes to poly bags, but not just any poly bags. Ours are made from plants, compostable and biodegradable; they contain a minimum of 60% post industrial recycled material. So, they're not hate-able. See images at left.


I'm buying this as a gift and I have no idea what to choose... help!

The Deluxe Kit is for the stitcher on-the-go, the beginning stitcher or the unorganized stitcher who'd rather have everything they need in one handy place. Basic Kits are for those who already have their own hoops, needles and a stash of thread. If you're buying several kits for one person, you probably only need one Deluxe Kit—they can use the hoop and needles with any Basic Kits. If you're not sure, give a gift certificate!


I'm not crafty, can I do it? Will it take days or years?

Counted cross stitch is one of the easiest forms of stitching because the material is a grid. It's kind of like connect-the-dots. It's enjoyable for crafty types, but also for people who like to do puzzles or solve problems. The pattern and instructions are very clear, all you have to do is read through them and you're good to go. I think you'll be surprised at how quickly you'll finish a piece—it's more a matter of hours than years. A  night or two of stitching in front of the TV should do it, or a cross-country flight. Then you're done—instant bragging rights! Remember: cross stitching is fun for a girl or for boy, young or old, reserved or gregarious. It's an equal opportunity pastime. For extra help, check out our animated instructions. 

I got my kit, now how do I transfer the pattern to the material? 

Counted cross stitch is not transferred like an iron-on. In the cross stitch world, this happens very rarely, usually for children's kits that are very large and simple. The rest of it is called counted cross stitch because you transfer the image by counting the squares in the material as you work. I know that sounds daunting--you don't have to count ALL of them!--but it's really enjoyable once you get into it, I promise! Try it out and if it's still hard to get started, try looking on youtube for a video tutorial on cross stitch or check out our How-To page. 

I'm done - now what? 

Slap it in a frame or if you're handy you can make it into a pillow. Look around craft stores for tacky items with cross stitch material built in, like pet bowls, diapers or guest towels. If you’re going to frame your work, I highly recommend Stitchery Tape (available in the Supplies section, where you can also purchase our signature ornate gold frames. Share your creations with us by posting a photo in the Subversive group on Flickr! 

Gosh, do I HAVE to pay for shipping? 

Yes, my policy has changed on this point after nine years because I have never raised prices on my kits (even though materials and postage both keep going up). I do my best to keep the cost down. You also have the option to add Priority Mail during checkout. 

SHIPPING SCHEDULE: When will my order arrive, dammit? 

I ship as soon as possible, but I’m still a one-person home business. Please check our current Shipping Schedule for more information. Priority Mail orders ship first and arrive faster. If you're in a TIZZY, email me and we can always FedEx or I can just start running in your general direction with kit in hand. 

Maybe I don't like Paypal. Do you take checks? 

I prefer Paypal since it makes transactions go smoothly and quickly—I’ve been using Paypal since 2001 and I just love them. If you'd rather pay with a CHECK, that's cool: please click here for a printable form 

Will signing up for your newsletter make you like me more? 

Are you kidding? If you sign up for my newsletter, I will love you forever and ever. Plus, you'll be the first to know about new stuff we'll be best friends. No spam and usually no more than one email a month. And, if I annoy you, you can unsubscribe and walk right out the door. You won't even have to see me cry. 

I want to take our relationship to the next level: do you sell wholesale? 

I thought you'd never ask! Sure, I can get it for you wholesale. Email me for the scoop. 

I want to sell my own stitched pieces of your work. Is that okay? 

I haven't developed a licensing program because I don't want to discourage your creativity, but at the same time please realize this is how I make my living. I trust that you will realize my patterns are copyrighted and you shouldn't use my original designs or design elements if you're starting your own company. But if you want to sell a few pieces based on my patterns that you've stitched, either online or at a craft fair, all I ask is that you please credit Subversive Cross Stitch and mention the URL If you're selling on Etsy, please don't use the tag "subversive cross stitch" because that is a little misleading since it is a trademarked proper name. I feel like there's room for everyone and I don't want to discourage your creativity. As long as we operate on a system of mutual trust and respect, I won't worry about a licensing program just yet. However, if you're talking about recreating my work on a larger scale, then of course we need to talk since everything I do is officially copyrighted. If in doubt, just ask! 

Who did the graphics for your pins? Who did your website? 

Matt Hinrichs designed the "retro girl" that is on some of my pins and postcards. He also provided the illustrations for my book and for the animated instructions page. My pins are cranked out by the fabulous folks at Busy Beaver Buttons, who always do an incredible job. The creative genius behind the totally overdue 2012 reworking of my website is my dear friend Molly Thornberg (check out her blog, digital mom) And I never could have gotten it finished and out the door without the technical wizardry and kindness of Melanie deDon, Superstar (she truly saved my neck)! Final, ongoing touches by the awesome Beth Been at Groovee Fortune in Austin, who has worked with me before. I highly recommend her for fast help at a great price. 

Will you sponsor my cause / my craft group / me in AA? 

One of the good things about working for myself is that I can contribute patterns or kits to a few events and fundraisers. I'm particularly partial to animal rescue groups and women's rights organizations. I've also sponsored small craft groups that have had Subversive Cross Stitch theme nights. Pitch me an idea and I'll do what I can. Can't help you on the AA thing, though. I'd be a bad influence there. 

Are these the same kits I saw in Urban Outfitters or a store somewhere? 

Yes! Three of my kits were carried in Urban Outfitters' retail stores, print catalogs and online in 2004-2005. Urban also carried my book, notecard sets, and the blue Q products. You may also have seen them on the web at's Red Hot Shop or BUST magazine's Boobtique, to name a couple. You can also find them at the fabulous Crafty Planet in Minneapolis, Princess Animal in San Francisco and lots of other shops throughout the US and UK. In 2010, Noted produced a posh version of my kits in French, German and British English. These can be found at museum shops and other stores throughout the UK and Europe. Also, Subversive has had a bunch of press that I can’t keep up with anymore, so who knows? I even stitched a custom cover for Parade magazine, I get around. If you see me in the press, wave and feel free to tell people you know me personally. 

I saw your stuff at a gallery show. Do you sell finished, framed pieces? 

Yes, I have finally started to take on custom and commercial work after a long break. Check out my Custom page to see some examples and let me know what you have in mind. 

I really appreciate your feedback and suggestions, and I STRONGLY encourage you to strike out on your own—there are several ideas in my book to get you started. I hope you'll drop me a note and share your stories of subversive adventure! Mi casa es su casa, so please make yourself at home and let me know if you need anything.

Thanks for visiting!