Gingham Valentine's Day Heart: Free Cross-Stitch Pattern

Updated on January 30, 2018
Free gingham heart cross stitch pattern
Free gingham heart cross stitch pattern | Source

Gingham Heart Cross-Stitch Pattern

This quick and simple cross-stitch pattern uses the striking gingham pattern in beautiful reds. I think it would make an ideal gift for a loved one this Valentine's Day.

Use a basic frame to turn it into a reminder of your love, or use this pattern with waste canvas and embellish a piece of clothing or gift bag with it for a cute and affordable gift! Complete the set of three designs (below) for a stunning display that can be used to decorate your home this February.

What You'll Need

  • Stranded cotton thread in bright red (DMC 321), dark red (DMC 814) and white (DMC B5200)
  • White 18 count Aida fabric (approximately 7x7")
  • Scissors
  • Cross-stitch needle
  • Frame with 4x4" aperture (optional)

Gingham Valentin'es Heart Cross-Stitch Chart
Gingham Valentin'es Heart Cross-Stitch Chart | Source

Cross-Stitch Key

Symbol
Colour
DMC Thread
-
Bright red
321 (2 strands)
|
Dark red
814 (2 strands)
.
White
B5200 (2 strands)
Backstitch Outline
Dark red
814 (1 strand)
Gingham has always been a popular fabric in dressmaking
Gingham has always been a popular fabric in dressmaking | Source

What Is Gingham?

Gingham is mostly a lightweight to medium-weight cotton cloth that's woven in a very distinct pattern. The stripes go both horizontally and vertically, creating a checked design. The first gingham fabric had stripes only going one way though, and this type was available until the late Victorian period.

Gingham is most commonly made using two colours: white and a bright colour. The most common colours in gingham are the primary colours: red, blue and yellow. However, this design can be made with any colour.

The design is created as the threads in both directions meet, creating various shades.

  • White + white = white squares
  • Coloured + coloured = dark-coloured squares
  • White + coloured = light-coloured squares

Since its invention, gingham has remained a popular fabric, mostly because it's affordable and is associated with Summer.

However, its use in popular culture has helped keep gingham in high demand...

  • Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz wore a gingham dress
  • Gingham shirts were a favourite of the 1960s mods
  • Designer brands such as Ben Sherman and Fred Perry have created gingham shirts
  • The football club Man U. will be wearing gingham during the 2012-2013 season

A Brief History of Gingham

Often associated with the dresses worn by southern belle's in America, I was surprised to learn that the famous checked gingham pattern was actually created in Manchester, England, during the mid 1700's.

Originally plain stripes, a factory in England decided to play with an idea and created stripes going both horizontal and vertical, resulting in this instantly recognisable design that has remained popular today.

Gingham is most widely used for casual dresses and shirts, and it has never really been seen as suitable for formal wear due to its low cost. You'll see gingham mostly in the summer, as the traditional fabric is lightweight and brightly coloured. It also has no right or wrong side so is ideal for reversible items.

Other popular uses for gingham include the linings of picnic baskets and outdoor table cloths, again because of its association with warmer weather. This led to gingham having the nickname 'tablecloth pattern'.

The actual word 'gingham' originates from the Malay word for striped, 'genggang'.

Set of three Valentine's Heart cross stitch patterns ~ free online
Set of three Valentine's Heart cross stitch patterns ~ free online | Source

Make a Valentine's Hearts Cross-Stitch Set

This design is the second in a set of three cross-stitch hearts for Valentine's Day. Make them and explore various styles!

The full set includes:

Feel free to share the link to this pattern, but please do not replicate it or sell it in any way.

© 2013 Karen Creftor

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    • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile image

      Susan Haze 2 years ago from Sunny Florida

      This is a beautiful cross stitch heart. I love the pattern. I think I will use it to make a pillow for my granddaughter.

    • KarenCreftor profile image
      Author

      Karen Creftor 5 years ago from Kent, UK

      What lovely comments, thank you! I'm glad you like it :D

      If you like this, make sure you check out the other two that are in the set.

      Please come back and let us all know if you give the patterns a try!

      ~Kaz x

    • faythef profile image

      Faythe F. 5 years ago from USA

      Very pretty

    • TToombs08 profile image

      Terrye Toombs 5 years ago from Somewhere between Heaven and Hell without a road map.

      A beautiful and easy pattern! love these!

    • purl3agony profile image

      Donna Herron 5 years ago from USA

      This is beautiful! Thanks for sharing it:)

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