I am fairly new to counted cross stitch. I love it, but
it is such a strain on your eyes and keeping up with where
you are and if you put the right amount of X'S there is
really a challenge. Any ideas would be appreciated.
I use one of the magnetic rulers and boards out there to hold the pattern and keep my place at the same time. I also work in color sections and look at what has to be stitched with that color before starting. It always helps to work in small sections from the center of the design and work outwards.
I learned to use a ruler a long time ago when typing single space copy to keep my place so the transition was easy for me to do.
Many of the boards come with extra magnetic strips, so I will block the section I am working on with the strips.
Make a working copy enlarging it as needed. Most deigners will allow you to do that. Try using a highlighter to cross out what you have stitched. That way you can still see what you are doing, but also what you have done.
I do enlarge my pattern (one of my main gripes with the pattern companies who reduce patterns to save money and not my eyesight) and still block off the sections.
I haven't done many large patterns just ones I've done myself, but what I have heard and agree with is highlighting what you've already done, work in small areas and another thing I heard to do is with a tailors pencil (you know those pencils you can even get at Wal-Mart that are blue or white that write on fabric) anyways use the pencil to mark out blocks of ten like the patterns are to help you keep with the pattern.
I also enlarge my pattern and cross off with the blue wash out pen or any kind of marker the areas that you have done.I also use the magnet board and strips to block off areas as i am working on them.Make sure to have a good light.DH bought me one of those table top daylights.Works very well.
I use a sticky note to keep my place. They're cheap and easy to move around.