One Strand or Two?
Skeins of floss consist of multiple strings of thread in one. DMC cotton thread, for instance, comes with 6 threads per length of floss. This means that for each length of thread you pull from the skein, there are 6 separate strands of floss.
When starting a project, you will need to figure out whether you should be using one strand or two. Charts will frequently list this information in the instructions section. This decision goes hand and hand with what type and count of fabric you are stitching on.
For now, we will focus on the basics. The photograph on the left shows a needle threaded to stitch with one strand of floss. The photographs below show a needle threaded with one strand, and with two.
The most important thing to know about stitching and number of strands is that it directly impacts the coverage you will get on your fabric.
When some stitchers are just starting out, they will try a few different samples of fabric and floss combinations to see what the coverage is. This can save you from a lot of heartache if you choose the wrong combination and can’t push yourself to stitch the project through to the end.