I'm not sure whether this question is suitable for this forum or not, but I'm going to give it a try anyway. If it's not, can someone please point me to the right direction? Thanks.

The Story:
My mom loves cross-stitching. She is subscribed to multiple communities(?) on Pinterest. She wants to recreate a couple of the images she finds but they always have lines from the cross stitching. I would like to help her by editing the existing images, so the don't have the cross-stitching lines.

Example Images

If you zoom into the image you can see that the colors are not hi-def at all. I have tried reverse image-searching but I haven't been able to find anything.

Now my question is:
How do I remove the cross-stitching effect on the image. Don't worry, i'm not asking anyone to do this for me. I would just like to find out how I can remove the effect.

Good news! I'm starting to answer my own question.
I've removed the white and black border around the image and devided the image width (and height) by the width of 1 stitch (which was 3 pixels, on this image).
But I still have more colors than desired, which was expected.

enter image description here

More questions
How do I get rid of the extra colors on the edge of the segments?

  • 3
    For my money... redraw it by manually tracing it in a vector application.
    – Scott
    Jan 17, 2019 at 22:43
  • It'd be quicker to do pixel tracing in Paint or Photoshop rather than Illustrator. Jan 18, 2019 at 16:58

1 Answer 1


I realize you tagged your question as one for Adobe Photoshop, however it would be better to recreate the image using a vector image editor instead, such as Adobe Illustrator, CorelDraw, or even Inkscape which is free.

To recreate the image and simplify it, shouldn't be too much work. Using the original image to trace over by hand, you could draw the whole outline of the figure first, then use that as a clipping mask over areas of colour fill with a white stroke. Then overlay the whole thing with a copy of the clipping mask shape of the figure, and add a white stroke.

Here's a partially completed example done in Inkscape, but the same is possible with other vector image editors. Obviously I rushed this, but you should get the general idea.

So that you can see what's going on, I outlined the clipping mask temporarily in blue, showing the underlying filled and stroked shapes.

enter image description here

Here it is with the clipping mask applied, and the outer outline stroke changed to white.

enter image description here

  • 1
    +1 I started to post something similar when I saw this.. then just.. well gave up when I realized I'd have to explain the masking.. and this wasn't tagged with Illustrator. :)
    – Scott
    Jan 18, 2019 at 17:51
  • 1
    Yeah @Scott, I thought the same as you since it is tagged "Photoshop", but this isn't really a job for Photoshop anyway.
    – Billy Kerr
    Jan 18, 2019 at 18:29

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