Computer Generated Charts, Pro's & Con's

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Having seen the many computer generated charts for sale on E-Bay, I thought I would buy one and compare it to the original. I have bought a couple of these over the time I have been on E-Bay and been horrified when confronted with a twenty page chart that needs 100 colours (and the patience of a saint!)
The chart in question, in its original form is an adorable picture from the Margaret Sherry (heritage) and shows Santa holding a sack with an armfull of brightly wrapped presents.
Here is an example of the computer generated chart:It is very hard to see where one part ends and the other begins the computer generated one consists of 4 sheets of a4 size paper, no back-stitch and a whopping 44 different DMC colours, to some people having no back-stitch will be a bonus, but in my opinion I think that for a picture that measures roughly 3 inches when completed 44 colours and 4 sheets of chart are slightly O.T.T!
Here is an example of the original chart, bearing in mind it is of the same image:
The original chart contains just two chart sheets one for the cross stitch and one for the back-stitch, the original picture uses a total of 19 DMC colours, and is very easy and a joy to work from. The symbols are clear and the use of an extra chart means its a lot easier to add the backstitch, which brings the finished picture to life.
Fair enough the computer generated charts are a LOT cheaper that the originals, but I think when you weigh it up the originals can be used again & again.
I would certainly reccomend you question the seller throughly before you purchase a computer generated one, key questions to ask should be:
1.Finished Size?..(you dont want to be stitching it for the next two years after all!)
2. Number of sheets the chart is printed on?
3. Number of threads used? (all the money you save buying a chart, you may have to spend on threads!)
Don't be afraid to ask questions, its your money after all. If its a good, reputable seller, they should be happy to answer any queries you have
If in doubt, why not buy a cheap cross stitch programme that enables you to convert your own pictures into stitches?  They are great fun and can be picked up quite cheaply on E-Bay or downloaded fron the internet, that way you will have some idea of what to expect when you buy these charts.
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