A recent post on Kotaku displayed a stunning example of video game devotion in a cross-stitch. The above creation, “Bitter Luigi” by John at Sprite Stitch is really just too cool for words. The amazing thing is how simple it is to create an intricate and detailed creation such as this.
The first step is to find or create a pattern. The pattern you decide on will determine what kind of materials you will need to pick up. If you’ve never sewed before, you’ll want to go with a small pattern, perhaps something that can fit in a 30×30 square grid. You’ll also want to go with a very simple color scheme – pick a design which only has three or four different colors.
Sprite Stitch has some great patterns available there or mentioned in links and is probably the best place for a beginner to start. Personally I would recommend something small with only a few select colors. That way it could be finished within an hour or two and won’t be too expensive should things go wrong. The Legend of Zelda or Kirby patterns at Sprite Stitch are fantastic for beginners.
If you’re particularly handy with paint or Photoshop, you can also make your own patterns. Just visit a sprite archive, like Sprite Database, and pick out a sprite that you like. If you have Photoshop, then Mega Man Stitchin’ has a great guide for making a grid overlay on top of sprite images. If you don’t, then simply enlarge the sprite on whatever paint or photo program you have and print out a copy.
The sewing is really very simple, and can be a relaxing and therapeutic hobby once you start and get used to the flow of sewing. Make sure you start in the center of your canvas. If you’re going to do this more than once, invest in an embroidery hoop to keep the material taut. Then choose a color to start with. Remember, with embroidery floss you don’t use the whole thing. You separate the thread into two or three small strands and use that smaller portion to sew with. Then just sew X’s onto the grid in the proper places, following the pattern. A good idea is to have a pencil nearby. If you’re working on a bigger pattern, then cross off the rows you have already sewn so you don’t lose track. Yarn Tree has a great tutorial and some stitching techniques that may help.
It really isn’t that difficult. After visiting the site suggested above, you could start immortalizing your own favorite video game moments. Or, if you’d rather not, you could always buy “Bitter Luigi” on eBay.