Using Beads in Cross StitchWritten by Katrina Renouf
Many people like to add embellishments to their cross stitch, and a great way to do this is with beads. In many situations, it’s also another way to avoid doing dreaded French knot!
Beads usually cover one space instead of a cross stitch. I would suggest sewing beads after their surrounding cross stitching is complete because they need to be well secured, and lie on top of cross stitches. For regular and small size beads, use one strand of floss or for heavier beads you can use two strands. There is also black or white "Nymo" beading thread, and there is "invisible" YLI thread which can be used for beading. If you can’t find these, use a color of thread that is either close to color of bead, or similar to background, so that thread doesn’t detract from bead.
The size of needle usually depends on size of bead. With seed beads use a fine pointed needle such as a quilting needle, appliqué needle or beading needle. The hole in most beads is too small to be used with a regular cross stitch needle. Beading needles are long and flexible with very narrow eyes. You can also use a regular hand sewing needle in a pinch, because they’re only ones thin enough for beads to fit over. All of these needles are more difficult to thread though, you will probably need a needle threader.
Tips For Buying Your First Model Train SetWritten by Robert Anderson
When getting started in model trains, don't get put off by all different scales on offer. Model train scales are really very simple. When deciding what scale train set to purchase, just keep in mind that O, S, HO and N are most common scales in use. Of those, HO is most widely used scale.
The best way to get started is purchase a 'starter train set'. These starter model train sets are designed to give beginner everything he or she needs to get up and running. Starter train sets contain all basics: a locomotive, cars, track and accessories. As far as cost; starter train sets are usually best value for money, because model train set manufacturers use them as bait to lure new people and get them hooked on model trains.
Why HO Scale Trains Are A Popular Choice
HO (pronounced “H-Oh”) scale is most popular model railroading scale and that's why there is generally a wider selection of accessories available including locomotives and rolling stock. The model train manufacturers really produce and cater for large HO market because most modelers prefer a middle-of-the-road size. But, although HO scale is convenient for most people, it is difficult to run 50-car trains on even medium-sized HO scale layouts.