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A very persuasive package, for creating embroidery patterns

Project description

A very persuasive package, for creating embroidery patterns.

ih is a Python command-line tool for generating cross-stitch patterns from source images.

Would you prefer to use a website instead? Try ih as a Service

As seen at PyCon US 2019

How to cross-stitch

Check out this amazing Cross Stitch Carpentry lesson!

ih technical details


Requires Python 3.7+ and pip:

pip install ih

ih is now usable as a CLI.

CLI Usage


  -p, --palette [lego|floss|floss-dmc|newlego|perler|alpaca|floss-pdx|wool|🧵|🧶|🦙]
                                  Palette to use. See for provenance
                                  [default: wool]

  -s, --scale INTEGER             Rescale factor  [default: 1]
  -c, --colors INTEGER            Limit palette to at most N colors.
                                  [default: 256]

  -r, --render                    Render preview of resulting artwork
                                  [default: False]

  -g, --guidelines, --print-ready
                                  Show guidelines, and print without colour
                                  [default: False]

  -o, --fileformat [html|term]    Output file format  [default: html]
  -f, --outputfolder TEXT         Output folder
  --version                       Show the version and exit.
  --help                          Show this message and exit.

Example usage:

ih -p alpaca -r -c 4 demo/demo_image.png -f demo/

For the demo image (source, freetoedit) using the alpaca palette, render the result in up to 4 colours, to the output folder demo/

Open demo/demo_image.html to see the result.

sample render


Use --print-ready for printing. ih will:

  • Use print-css functionality to ensure the print view is black+white
  • Use js to dynamically split wide charts. Requires jQuery via CDN.

When printing, the page order will be legend, then a series of columns of chart.

Install from source

Using git and virtualenv:

git clone
cd ih
virtualenv venv
source venv/bin/activate
pip install -r requirements.txt

ih as a module

See its use in ih-aas

Package name origin

Disney's Lilo and Stitch:

Jumba: What?! After all you put me through you expect me to help you just like that?! Just like that?!
Stitch: Ih.
Jumba: Fine.
Pleakley: Fine? You're doing what he says?
Jumba: Uh, he's very persuasive.

Data provenance


Sourced from and


Sourced from the medium colour on swatch previews from

Oct 2020: This is the palette dervived during the PyCon 2019 talk, but was replaced with a better palette. It still remains available through floss-dmc


Yet another floss-to-hex palette offered by and converted to ih format. The original spreadsheet can be found here.

Note that they also provide a couple of other handy tools including a floss use calculator!


Sourced from the medium colour on swatch previews from


Source from Kaggle dataset colors.csv (source)


Based on Perler Manufacturer information (source one, source two)


Source from Jill Rowling


LILO & STITCH is a trademark of Disney Enterprises, Inc.

LEGO® is a registered trademark of The Lego Group.

PERLER BEADS is a trademark of Stitch Acquisition Group.

Aurora test image (test/images/aurora.jpg) by Jonathan Bean from Unsplash:

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