News, Views, and things we like (Note that any designs shown may not be created using our software)

Windows Defender - too keen?

Friday 3rd August 2018

We have become aware of people having trouble installing anything (not just our app!) on their Windows 10 computers. Symptoms include being told the hard drive is full during installation, or messages about Favorites folder when the app is running.  This is Windows Defender being ruthless about what it allows you to do. In some cases it has been known to block installs completely, even of Microsoft’s own products such as Office!

If you have trouble installing, Defender can be turned off temporarily during install. That will allow you to install properly, and the desktop icon will be created without the (incorrect)  ‘drive full’ message.

Defender can and usually should be turned back on afterwards.

However, if you then get message after message about ‘favourites’ folder being used (which is a normal part of windows use), you may want to grant our app permission to run unimpeded.

To do that for WinStitch (or any other trusted application), you need to ‘Add an Exclusion’

  • Go to Start  > Settings > Updates & Security  > Windows Security > Virus & threat protection > Virus & threat protection settings > Add or remove exclusions.
  • Under Add an exclusion, select the files, folders, file types, or process. The exclusion will apply to subfolders within a folder as well.
  • Select C:`\program files x86\winstitch 20xx\winstitch.exe
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Wednesday 1st August 2018

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Finished the cute avocado and cat pun. An avocato.

This one has been featured on the official dmc facebook page :)

You can find the pattern here:

Loving this one!

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A quote

Wednesday 1st August 2018
Thank you very much for your prompt and very helpful assistance with this.  The dead laptop was a major crisis in lots of ways but you have made one bit much better CP august 1
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A quote

Tuesday 24th July 2018
I have been fiddling with Winstitch today and I have to say that I absolutely love it and found it very easy and enjoyable to use.  I think it’s well worth the price and it’s clear that the people who made it have invested a lot of time making it perfect… :) Krisztina T
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A quote

Monday 4th June 2018
Everyone thinks I’m a brilliant designer. I’m not – just an ordinary human needlepointer with one powerful piece of design software!  Thanks.  Yet again. Barbara R. June 2018
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A quote

Wednesday 28th March 2018
I just wanted to tell you how much I LOVE your onion skin option and your how-to on recreating a chart.  I am currently stitching a large commercial chart and it has one  area where the chart has gone terribly wrong.  Using your onion skin instructions I was able to create a new chart to work from for that small area.  It has made stitching the design correctly so much easier. JoAnne Troy March 2018
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Stylus acting strangely in Windows?

Tuesday 20th March 2018

It appears Microsoft have been making changes to the way stylus devices work in Windows 10.

If your stylus is not drawing properly, this MAY help:

“In response to overwhelming feedback from our Windows Insiders, the Windows 10 Fall Creator’s Update changed how the pen behaves when it isn’t doing its primary function of laying down ink. The pen now scrolls/pans content,”
we also changed the behavior for legacy Win32 applications that weren’t specifically designed for pen. These applications instead rely on Windows to convert pen input into another form of compatible input, such as mouse. While we try to test as many of the most popular applications used with pen before releasing, there is a chance that one of your favorite applications wasn’t covered as part of our validation, relies on input conversion, and may not function as intended after this change.”

So, type CMD at the start menu to get a DOS window open.

In that, type
reg add HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Pen /v LegacyPenInteractionModel /t REG_DWORD /d 1 /f

and press enter.

nb: Ursa Software are not responsible for Microsoft software changes of this nature, or the effects of running the command line above, which itself was provided my Microsoft.

Anytime you want to switch legacy applications back to the behavior introduced in the Windows 10 Fall Creator’s Update, execute this: “reg add HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Pen /v LegacyPenInteractionModel /t REG_DWORD /d 0 /f”

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Making Money by Design

Thursday 8th March 2018

This is a question received recently but it crops up now and then, so here it is as an FAQ:

‘I’m considering buying MacStitch and I wanted to make sure first whether I’m allowed to sell patterns made with it on Etsy and other marketplaces and if there is any special version requirement for it.
Thanks in advance,


Of course you are! :)
We don’t even ask you to mention the software you use.
Loads of people are doing it, and you don’t need any special version, although the Premium edition has better tools for generating PDF files.
Good luck!

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A video

Thursday 8th March 2018

We just added a nifty way to remove unwanted background from imported images. Simply select the area you want to keep, and choose ‘Erase Background’

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A quote

Tuesday 6th March 2018
Thank you so much for an amazing product and even more amazing customer support! Greg A.
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Feeback received Feb 18.

Tuesday 20th February 2018

“My 2014 version (though I discovered I also have a 2017 version lurking on my computer) was herky and jerky and giving me fits with the Yosemite operating system on my Mac.  Just bought and downloaded the 2018 version.   Oh, lord, it works like butter.  I love it, and I love Ursa!   Thank you, thank you for all you do.”

Pam J

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MyriaCross Closure

Tuesday 2nd January 2018

At the time of writing, it seems that Myriacross (one of our competitors) has ceased trading. We are taking may calls and emails from people who are now looking for a new software to design cross stitch charts.  Understandably, they are also keen not to lose existing work.  

We are happy to report that we have been able to obtain a conversion program that can convert Myriacross charts for use with WinStitch and MacStitch, making the switch as painless as possible.

We do make a small charge for the service as it is a manual job and can take up some time.

(This service can also be used to convert charts to and from PCStitch and Hobbyware formats, if you find yourself stuff for those!)

There is a link below, but please email with any questions you may have!

Convert your old charts?

MacStitch and WinStitch will directly import charts from PCStitch (up to version 7 format.)

For a small fee, we will convert charts from other software (eg Hobbyware, Myriacross, PCStitch 10/11)  to our format: 

Up to 12 designs for a one-off fee of £8.
Just email the designs, we convert them, and email them back.
If we can’t do it, we will refund the fee. Simple!

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MacStitch Premium now 64bit

Saturday 16th December 2017

When Apple released Sierra, we noticed things start to slow down a lot when compared to El Capitan, in all applications, not just MacStitch.

Normally we expect new machines and processors to make the software faster each year, but two things are slowing down new Apple machines.

First: Sierra itself. In most of our tests, drawing graphics on screen takes longer in Sierra.. some tests are 6 times as much in 32bit software, and twice as much in 64bit.

Second: Retina screens. These have lots more dots, and throw around lots more memory. So using a retina screen adds more slowdown.

We have been shipping 32 bit deliberately until Sierra came out, for compatibility reasons. 

Now, to get back some of the lost speed, we have released MacStitch 2017 in a 64 bit build

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Friday 1st December 2017

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Here’s a free weather-themed cross stitch chart. Next, I’ll do a pretty snowflake.

Here’s a great and cheerful pattern, perfect for when the weather doesnt match the mood!  Nice one, Colleen  #theworldinstitches 

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Thursday 23rd November 2017

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You voted for it and now it’s here! Beauty and the Beast mini frames are now in the store. The perfect little stocking filler for the Disney lover in your life ❤️🌹

How cool is this? :)

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Mac OSX High Sierra and 32bit

Thursday 28th September 2017

Don’t Panic!

There are quite a few sites suggesting that High Sierra won’t run 32bit apps.

Don’t worry: this is just click bait, and it’s wrong.

In fact, it is the last version to run 32bit apps ‘without compromise’.. so your existing MacStitch app will be good for another 3 years at least.

But MacStitch 2018 is due out by December, and will be available in 64bit as standard, with a 32bit version ‘on demand’ if it is needed.

Apple’s statement on this: (our bold)

64-bit Requirement for Mac Apps

June 28, 2017

At WWDC 2017, we announced new apps submitted to the Mac App Store must support 64-bit starting January 2018, and Mac app updates and existing apps must support 64-bit starting June 2018. If you distribute your apps outside the Mac App Store, we highly recommend distributing 64-bit binaries to make sure your users can continue to run your apps on future versions of macOS. macOS High Sierra will be the last macOS release to support 32-bit apps without compromise.

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New DMC Threads

Monday 18th September 2017

DMC have released 35 new thread colors.. 1 to 35

A new thread set is available to download from our freebies page, but be aware: these colors are not available everywhere and it may not make sense to create image conversions using these new colors until they have made their way into the shops!

Link Here

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Clipboards problem (MacStitch)

Sunday 10th September 2017

We are hearing from a few people that the Clipboards option is causing trouble.. (freezing or crashing).

If this affects you, please follow these steps:

Go to the View menu. Select ‘Support Folder’. Then delete the ‘RecentClips’ folder. (It will be recreated when you start the app)

That should clear the issue for you.

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New XStitch Magazine

Friday 1st September 2017

Looking for a cross stitch magazine with a modern attitude? 

XStitch is just what you need! Buy your copy now from :

and you can find them on Facebook at

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Theres a right way, and theres a wrong way...

Wednesday 9th August 2017

Just thought we would share this ‘stock video’ which is quite amusing - why would you even try to sew like this?

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GOGO Cross Stitch App & colors

Saturday 5th August 2017

We’ve found a great little app available for iPad and Kindle, where you can get all the relaxation and therapeutic values of cross stitch but without having to buy all that thread and cloth. GoGo Cross Stitch App lets you ‘cross stitch’ on screen, either using their built-in charts, or following bought patterns.  We have put links to the app below.

The reason we are giving them a mention is firstly, they are nice people! , and secondly, some of our own customers wanted to design charts for use in GoGo app, so needed a set of threads which match the GoGo color palette.

We are pleased to provide these as a download, and they will be part of future installs too.

Here is a link to get the threads file.. download and save into documents/macstitch/threads to use it.

And here is a link to the GoGo Cross Stitch App on the App Store:

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Purple Haze Crochet

Wednesday 12th July 2017

We very much like this Fairy Tale pattern from Purple Haze. Check them out on Etsy!

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Corner to Corner Crochet

Wednesday 12th July 2017

Heres a great pictorial page showing how to do the C2C crochet method!

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Coming Soon?

Saturday 27th May 2017

Its that time of year again.. The 2017 editions have been out for 6 months, and we issued 18 updates so far, with some new features.  But we like to get a bundle of brand new things ready for the 2018 edition, and this is the time of year when the new features list is finalised and work begins.  So if you have a great idea that you want to see in our software, now is the time to tell us. We cant promise every new idea will make it (for example we still havent found a way to get the cloth to go through your printer!;>  )  but if we like it, we’ll do our best to do it for you.  Email now! 

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We like this:

Saturday 27th May 2017

Heres a link to a chart by our favorite polymath Viv Powers. Check out her work on!

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Monday 10th April 2017

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Happy weekend … Easter is not far, if you interest to make some Easter craft!! this 2 little bunnies are good to try ~ 💖🐰🐰💖 #crossstitchersofinstagram #crossstitcher #crossstitch #xstitch #xstitchersofinstagram #needlework #happyeaster #needlepoint #stitch #happyweekend #redbeardesign


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Monday 10th April 2017
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Monday 10th April 2017
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Monday 10th April 2017
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Windows version running slow?

Thursday 16th March 2017

Many apps, ours included , can be brought to a crawl by external applications. If your program is running slowly, check out what your virus checker is doing: it may be interrogating every file opened or saved.

DropBox, a popular storage system , is a real performance killer if it is trying to duplicate files while you work. Ditto OneDrive, so check your settings for those to make sure that they arent constantly churning away in the background handling everything you do. Let them update only periodically and you will see things improve in lots of your apps!

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Thursday 9th March 2017

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Day 8 - Where #marchmeetthemaker⠀

The North East of England is where I hail from - I love it!⠀
Here’s my (just for fun!) little homage to Newcastle and Gateshead in the style of Pretty Little Cities.

Our home town too. Lovely work. I’m sure the Tyne never looked quite so inviting when I was a lad.. :)

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Thursday 9th March 2017

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General Leia Organa

Shout out to Silvousplaits’ Leia Hair tutorial for giving me the information I needed to create the stitch for Leia’s hair

How cool is this?

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Backstitch letter issue

Tuesday 31st January 2017

Since January, we are sorry to find that some of the new lowercase letters in the backstitch fonts have been shown to be corrupted in the build. 

We are working to fix those as fast as we can.

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New DMC Stitchable Mesh

Tuesday 3rd January 2017

DMC have a new ‘fabric’.. stitchable mesh. Its a bit like tapestry cloth, but in smaller hpi. Silver one side, gold the other, it looks like it could help create some great works.

We really liked this from the ‘Scrap Shoppe’ blog:

(Ursa Software was not sponsored for this post)

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Web sites!

Wednesday 14th December 2016

We had some downtime last week. No-one likes that, but the company we had been using for our site had become unreliable, and support was almost non-existant. When the site went down, it was the last straw.  We changed hosts, and we have been amazed at the Service , and the speed of the new site. Finding our site speedy?  We genuinely recommend SiteGround

If you want a faster site, please click on the link below  and talk to them.

 (yes, we get a small referral fee if you use this, but we would recommend them even if there wasnt!)

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Auto-Tabbing in Sierra

Monday 7th November 2016

In MacOS Sierra, a new feature was introduced that changes the way new windows are opened. It groups your document windows together and presents them as tabs, much as you will have seen in browsers such as Safari and Chrome.

This is a setting in preferences, and can be set to ‘never’, ‘only when full screen’, and ‘Always’

MacStitch will be affected by this setting if you have it set to ‘Always’.

However, when tabs are turned on, MacOS doesn’t tell MacStitch that the window size has changed. Buttons at the bottom of the window will be invisible. To correct that, please slightly resize the window by dragging the corner by a pixel or so. Versions of MacStitch from December 2016 onwards wont be affected by this.

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Friday 21st October 2016

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Cross Stitching on Crochet.. we love it!

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Thursday 13th October 2016

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This is amazing. Oversized canvas and large crosses of wool / cotton.

Source: charlotte lancelot : the Canevas collection for GAN

What could YOU make?

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Wednesday 12th October 2016
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A video

Sunday 9th October 2016

Well, this was interesting.. DMC threads being made. (French with English subtitles)

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Friday 30th September 2016

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Getting there!

:)  Not long now…

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Two Machines?

Friday 2nd September 2016

One question we get asked a lot is ‘If I have a desktop and a laptop, do I need to buy two copies’.

No.. we are happy for you to install MacStitch or WinStitch on both the computers you own.. we know people often go out taking laptops with them for example.

If you want a copy of MacStitch AND WinStitch, we can do that for you at a huge discount.. just send an email and we can tell you about it. :)

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Wednesday 31st August 2016
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Upgrading to 2016

Saturday 27th August 2016

We do a variety of program levels, including Std and Premium. Until now, if you had an old program and wanted to upgrade to a new one, you had to upgrade to the Premium edition at the same time.

Well, we’re happy to report that due to popular demand (well, a couple of nice emails..) , we’ve added a link to allow you to move from MacStitch Std or WinStitch Std to the 2016 equivalent for a small charge.

So if you dont need to invest in Premium, now you don’t have to!

The upgrade page is at:

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Saturday 6th August 2016

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Block 12 was a quick stitch. Half of the sampler is done at this point 😊

Really nice work here. The odd spot of color adds interest to the piece, too. :)

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OSX 10.12 beta

Friday 8th July 2016

The next version of OSX is in beta and due out soon. Apple have introduced new more stringent security measures to check downloaded apps (following a case last year where someone managed to create malware versions of some Apple code)

We know that under OSX 10.12, downloaded programs can sometimes be ‘super examined’ , causing them to take much longer to start. 

This is likely to affect MacStitch, so if you decide to use OSX 10.12 beta, please expect beta issues like this. We are working on it.

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Getting ‘Copy and Paste’ just right.

Sunday 3rd July 2016

When you copy an area and go to paste it, the pasted motif is ‘held’ at the centre of the area.  You can move it around under control of the mouse, and then click to place it where you want.

If the mouse gets close to the edge of the grid area, it will scroll to allow you access to previously hidden parts of the design.

But when you are zoomed in , the number of squares on screen could be small, so any scrolling will look like large ‘jumps’

Placing a pasted area no longer needs to be ‘right first time’.

If you paste as a LAYER then what is pasted is not ‘fixed in place’

Just click on it, and it will appear with a green selection border. Use the mouse to drag it where you want, square by square if you need to.

(To paste as a Layer, use CMD-L or CTRL-L instead of CMD-V or CTRL-V)

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Sunday 3rd July 2016

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Poro keyrings. :)

Cute and quick.. if you are looking for gift ideas, keyrings like these little gems could be just the thing! 

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Fuzzy Symbols in the PDF?

Sunday 26th June 2016

If the symbols in the Advanced PDF export are ‘fussy’ or indistinct, check the ‘Quality’ settings on the PDF export screen. This optrion sets how much compression is applied to images in the PDF.

Low quality gets a smaller file, but fuzzy symbols.

High quality gets better looking output.

The option is on the ‘Metadata’ tab:

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Peacock & Fig A link

Monday 6th June 2016
Peacock & Fig

Dana Bathos’ new blog site: worth a look around.. :)

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