Licensing the symbol set

Posted 20 May 2020 by JC

Let me be clear right up front: I love stitch maps. I love how drawing a chart without a grid can bring clarity to many stitch patterns. Having one symbol per stitch, letting each symbol point to those of the row below into which it’s worked... well, for me, it’s magic.

That said, I know a lot of people are still fond of grid-based charts. And drawing them is a lot easier if you have access to a good tools. Stitchmastery is an excellent choice that comes with many symbols. But if you want total flexibility? You want to use a general-purpose vector drawing tool, like Illustrator or Inkscape.

And this is where we roll back around to stitch maps. If you’re going to draw charts with a general-purpose tool, you need to get your hands on a symbol set. You can draw your own, of course – or, as of today, you can license the symbols used here at

The deal is this: when you license the symbol set, you get nearly 300 clear, consistent symbols in the form of PDF and SVG vector data files. Each symbol is a named “group,” and each group includes an invisible rectangle. These rectangles are crucial, as they let you easily snap symbols to a grid. Consider, for example, this chart for Gathered Daisies:

gathered daisies sample chart

I drew it in Illustrator, using symbols from the symbol set. Using Illustrator meant I could define the grid as I wanted, number the rows as I wanted, and add color as I wanted. Using the symbols meant I didn’t have to draw symbols from scratch.

The symbols are all drawn at a scale of eight grid squares to the inch – but since we’re talking about vector drawing tools, you could of course scale the symbols larger or smaller as you wished, while keeping perfect clarity. And from Illustrator or Inkscape you could save your finished charts in any format you like.

So, are you intrigued? If you’d like to know more about using the symbol set, email me. I’d be happy to answer any questions you might have!

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