Earlier in the year, I took the plunge into the world of evenweaves and linens. Some get confused because the counts are so high: 28ct, 32ct, 36ct. Relax.... What you have to remember is counts this high just means you're probably going to be stitching "over two" which essentially equates to 14ct, 16ct, 18ct if you were using aida. So, what's the "over two" language I'm using?
Simple. When stitching a design on an evenweave or linen fabric, work each cross stitch over two threads of the fabric. This means you should count across and up two holes instead of one in order to create each half of the X. What I do is count 'one, two' each time I make a stitch. It helps until you get the hang of it. The diagram below is a visual example of what I'm talking about:
My first project stitching "over two" is Japanese Garden by Martina Weber. It'll be 17x17 when finished and contains lots of specialty stitches. What was I thinking?? LOL It'll be gorgeous when finished. A completed pic of it is in my sidebar to the right. If you've never stitched "over two" before, I would choose something MUCH smaller and easier so you get the hang of it. I would also recommend you try evenweave first, as opposed to linen. I've been told it's easier. Since starting JG, I've made several smaller projects on linen. Linen or Evenweave, I like them both. The fabrics look more refined than aida. I haven't given up the aida, though!