I picked up cross stitching when my mom hand-stitched a silk pillow case for me as 10-year-old birthday gift!
I was so impressed by this exquisite pillow case (a piece of Hunan Xiang Embroidery, actually), and I became so attached to it, that I still bring it with me each time I move to a new place (Linus van Pelt, you are not alone! : ).
When I confessed to my mom that I was interested in learning how to cross stitch, she found the perfect excuse to present me with all my parents’ shirts, blouses, and pants that needed re-stitch! “This is where you should start”, she told me. And she was probably right since my stitching skills improved greatly and I soon managed to move to more complex patters and refined techniques.
Today, stitching for me is a great way to relieve the stress of the day and feel relaxed. Besides, the cross stitches become great personalized gifts for friends and family members who can appreciate the time and effort I have put in (although I have yet to see someone carrying my stitches wherever they go… : )