QR Code Cross-Stitch: Great Idea, But Does It Work?

Sewing Projects

CD case frame 4

Cross-stitched QR codes have been popping up all over the web: I loved the idea, but was somewhat skeptical as to whether QR readers would recognize x-shaped stiches as perfect pixels and be able to read the code (especially since my stitching is a bit… heterogeneous, shall we say?)  So I did a science and tried it out.  I was inspired by a tutorial from MAKE but there are many others online: just go to a QR generating site like qrstuff and stitch away!  I recycled an old CD jewel case into a frame: tutorial at the end of the post.

I decided to stitch up one of my favourite quotes from House, to put on my desk at work:

Look Stupid House Quote 2

I’m not sure how to attribute the quote other than to the TV show: it’s not clear who did the graphic design (if you know, please tell me so I can give them credit).  After making a text-based QR code at http://www.qrstuff.com, I printed it out so I could take it with me.  I found it easier to cross-stitch if I drew a grid on top of the code:

QR code printout

So… did it work?

QR code scanned

Yay!  I reject the null hypothesis and conclude that my horrible stitching is actually clear enough to be read by a QR reader.  Go science.

For a frugal (by which I mean free) and eco-friendly way to display your cross-stitch, you can make use of one of those old CD jewel cases you have gathering dust in a closet somewhere.  I’d hung on to this one since it was my friends’ album, and since no harm is done to the CD or case in the process, I can still listen to the music, and if they ever move back to Canada I can pretend I didn’t make crafts with it ;)

Step 1:  Put bristol board or other stiff card inside the front of the case and trace around it.  Cut out the shape, place it inside the front of the case, and trim if necessary.

CD case frame 2

Step 2:  Use an x-acto knife to cut out a window large enough for your cross-stitch.  Slide it back into the case, and tape the cross-stitch cloth inside, using the album liner to sandwich it in place.

CD case frame 3Step 3: Go relax, you’re done!  This is a very short tutorial.

CD frame case 5


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