Today, you’ll learn how to make your own DIY stitch markers for your crochet and knit projects. These are custom, laser cut stitch markers with labels to help you keep track of stitch and row counts, right vs. wrong sides, and your crochet hook size.
If you have a laser cutter (like the xTool M1), grab the free SVG file for all the stitch markers. Don’t worry if you don’t have one: you can still use this tutorial to make adorable custom stitch markers with metal charms. Yay!
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Free Stitch Marker SVG File
If you want to follow along with the full tutorial to make your own stitch markers, you’ll need the free SVG file! This is what you’ll upload to your laser cutter software to cut out your stitch markers.
The free SVG file includes 57 different options for stitch markers, including hook size in both letters and millimeters, right/wrong side, and numbers for tracking rows/stitches.
To grab your freebie, fill out the form below ⬇⬇
Why Make DIY Stitch Markers?
Stitch markers are an essential part of any knitter or crocheter’s toolkit. In crochet, there are at least eleven different ways to use stitch markers. That’s a lot, right?
If you’ve been crocheting for a while, you probably have dozens of stitch markers and progress keepers in your project bag, notions pouch, and hidden between the couch cushions. I’m always finding extra stitch markers and little pieces of yarn around my home.
Sure, you can buy a huge pack of plastic ones on Amazon for less than $10, but the cutest stitch markers for your social media and product listing photos are handmade. Just like fancy hooks, custom stitch markers instantly boost the beauty and professionalism in your photos. Take a look:
Pretty, right?! And homemade stitch markers aren’t just gorgeous, they’re also functional. If you use the free SVG file, your stitch markers can help you remember essential crochet information like hook size, row count, and the right/wrong side.
Supplies / Materials for DIY Stitch Markers
To laser cut your own wooden rounds, you’ll need:
- xTool M1 hybrid laser and blade cutter
- 3mm basswood plywood (also included in the xTool premium materials box)
- DIY stitch markers SVG file (free download)
- Computer with xTool Creative Space (XCS) software (free to download)
To make the actual crochet stitch markers, you’ll need:
- 16 mm lobster clasps or 12 mm leverback hooks
- 8 mm jump rings (I have this multipack that also included pliers)
- 2 pairs of jewelry pliers
- Laser cut stitch marker rounds AND / OR metal charms
The xTool M1 Laser & Blade Cutter
When xTool asked me to try their M1 laser and blade cutter, I immediately knew I wanted to make my own wooden stitch markers. After designing my stitch markers in Illustrator, I uploaded the SVG file to xTool Creative Space (XCS) and marked which parts should be cut, engraved, and scored.
With the 10W M1, it took about five minutes to engrave and cut six sample stitch markers. Once I knew the designs worked, I cut a whole bunch more DIY stitch markers. They’re so handy to have around!
I used a sheet of 3 mm basswood that came with the xTool materials bundle, but you could use another type of plywood or solid-colored acrylic. The M1 can cut wood up to 10mm thick and acrylic up to 3mm.
➡ Read the full xTool M1 review here.
How to Make DIY Stitch Markers (Crochet & Knit)
Follow along for a step-by-step tutorial on how to create your own DIY stitch markers for crocheting or knitting. The tutorial includes instructions for making your own round wooden stitch markers using the xTool M1. If you already have another brand of laser cutter/engraver (like a Glowforge), it should work too.
If you don’t have the xTool M1 or another laser cutter, grab your metal charms and skip to step seven.
1. Download the DIY Stitch Markers Template SVG
Once you’ve downloaded the stitch markers SVG, open it in xTool Creative Space by clicking “Image” (upper left corner) and selecting the file.
2. Set up the xTool M1 laser cutter and settings
Turn on your xTool M1 and make sure the exhaust pipe is aimed outside. Next, place your sheet of 3 mm basswood on either the triangular prisms (included with the machine) or the honeycomb riser (add-on), and connect the machine to your computer. Once it’s connected, you should be able to see the basswood in XCS, thanks to the M1’s camera.
On the right side of the screen, select “Laser flat” from the top dropdown. Then choose “3mm Basswood Plywood” from the Material dropdown. The thickness should auto-populate based on your selection.
Finally, choose “Triangular prism” from the Height raised dropdown. The triangular prisms come with the M1. If you’re using the honeycomb riser base, choose “no.”
3. Prepare the project for cutting
Select the stitch markers you want to make and delete any excess markers. The SVG file has hook letters, hook sizes in millimeters (mm), RS/WS, and numbers for counting rows or chains. I selected three stitch markers for the demonstration.
Each part of the stitch marker is separate, so you’ll need to select all the parts to move it. You can select by holding SHIFT and clicking on each part, or clicking and dragging to highlight around each marker.
Move the stitch markers to the part of the wood you’d like to cut. This may be a top corner if it’s a brand new piece of wood, or squeezed between previous cuts if you’re reusing wood.
SVG files open as “score” by default, so you’ll need to make some adjustments. Select each part of the stitch marker and choose score, engrave, or cut on the righthand menu.
For the stitch markers, you’ll need to select “cut” for the outermost circle (the edge of the stitch marker) and for the smallest circle (the jump ring hole).
Select “score” for the interior circle (purely decorative) and “engrave” for each letter/number on the inside of the stitch marker.
4. Begin Processing
Click the green “Process” button in the lower righthand corner of XCS.
Framing helps set up the laser and center your image properly. To frame, click the green “Framing button” below the image preview.
You’ll see a “Tips” pop-up, which explains how to frame. Click the round button on your xTool M1 and wait for the framing to stop. Click it again for a second round of framing. Then, click the green “Framing completed” button to move on.
6. Cutting your DIY stitch markers
Once framing is completed, click the green “Start” button in the upper left corner of your screen. Your xTool M1 will begin cutting and engraving your DIY stitch markers. Make sure you stay in the same room in case of any issues with cutting.
When cutting is completed, remove your stitch markers from the xTool M1 machine. The holes at the top should fall out as you lift them.
7. Attach the jump rings to your stitch markers
Using both pairs of pliers, carefully open the jump ring (photos a & b). Place a set of pliers on either side of the break/opening and gently pull one side toward you and one side away from you.
Once the gap is large enough, slide the wooden stitch marker or metal charm onto the jump ring (photo c).
8. Add the clasp
Slide the lobster clasp or leverback hook onto the jump ring (photo d above).
Note: Crocheters can use either type of clasp on their stitch markers, but if you knit you should use the leverback hooks. They’re more circular so you can slide them over your knitting needles.
9. Close the jump ring
Using both sets of pliers, close the jump ring. Gently push the two sides back together to close the gap. Your first DIY stitch marker is complete!
10. Make a lot more handmade stitch markers!
Now that you’ve made your first one, rinse and repeat until you have a whole collection of custom DIY stitch markers for all your crochet and knit projects.
Check out these laser cut crochet earrings too!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
How big are the laser cut stitch markers?
Each stitch marker round is about .78 inches in diameter, but the great thing about SVG files is that they’re vector images. This means that you can make your stitch markers bigger or smaller without loss of image clarity. However, I wouldn’t go much smaller or the text will be hard to read.
Once you add the jump ring and clasp, your crochet stitch markers will be approximately 1.5 inches in length.
How do you use stitch markers in crochet?
Here’s a post to walk you through 11 different ways to use stitch markers in crochet.
Can you use these stitch markers for both crochet and knit projects?
Yes! These stitch markers are removeable, thanks to the leverback and/or lobster clasps. If you’re a crocheter, either type of clasp will work out well. If you’re a knitter, you should use the leverback clasps so the stitch markers can slide over your knitting needles.
I don’t have a laser cutter, can I still use this tutorial to make my own stitch markers?
Absolutely — You have three choices: ask a laser cutting friend or shop to make the wooden rounds for you, use metal charms instead, or purchase an xTool M1.
If you’re on the fence about purchasing a laser cutter, check out our xTool M1 review.
More Stitch Tutorials & Patterns
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