I have always loved Voltron. The cartoon was out when I was in 4th grade and I was a huge fan! Still am! At some point, our household acquired a Voltron coloring book, which I still have (but cannot currently locate due to the state of disarray in which my bookcases exist).
Over the years, I have mulled over a craft project involving Voltron, but could never really get one off the ground. I don’t have the artistic chops to build a pattern from scratch, and all of the images I could find online weren’t quite right for my purposes. I did find one, finally, but couldn’t find anyone to turn it into a cross-stitch pattern for me.
Turns out, there is quite a bit of software out there that will take an image and turn it into a cross-stitch pattern for you. Trouble is, they’re VERY basic and will take every single color value in the image (so instead of reading an outline as “black,” it reads it as “30 shades of lightest grey to darkest brown but DEAR GOD NOT BLACK”). This left me with an image that was maxed out at 300 colors and needed a shit-ton of fixing before it would be stitchable.
Since I had a few major projects to do for my classes before graduating last semester, I sat down with the software and edited Voltron, stitch by stitch by stitch. I’m a proud procraftinator. This process took me over 50 hours and was very nearly a disaster. I was so close to having the pattern utterly perfect when the file got corrupted and I couldn’t edit it further. LUCKY FOR ME, I save often and had something ready to go that was literally 5 stitches away from being 100% perfect. Whew. I’d changed all the errant stitches to BRIGHT PINK so when I come across them in the pattern, they should be easy to fix.
Once the pattern was done, the first problem I ran into was sizing. This thing is going to be LARGE. But it could have been even larger. Cross-stitch uses gridded cloth that comes in various sizes, from 11 squares per inch upward. There are a number of stitch calculators online that allowed me to put in my dimensions and come up with the right size for this project, and the only reasonable size requires 22-count cloth. Which had to be woven specifically for my order by elves in Norway or something.
So we are talking TEENY STITCHES, man. And the thing is still going to be 51 x 27 inches. Can’t wait to see what it costs to frame it, when I finish it, in 2020.
It ended up being about 39 colors, overall.
And just over 250,000 stitches.
Here is the GIANT ORIGINAL IMAGE, for which I will not apologize:
And here is the latest in-progress image:
If you want to follow along, I will blog it here since my personal website is borked and doxxy. You can follow me on Instagram if you want (@pieceofyourlife) which is mostly pictures of my idiot dogs, my magnificent cat, beer, and the occasional stitching update.
It’s gonna be a long ride, friends. Get comfy.