What the Ort?

Orts. What are they? The actual definition of ort is "a morsel left at a meal." Over time, cross-stitchers have claimed the word ort to mean the little scrap of floss that remains when you snip your floss and are left with the pieces from the eye of the needle.

So what to do with them? Toss them? Save them? Personally, I have always just thrown them in the garbage, but I feel bad (can't be good for pollution) and think that I should probably start saving them.

Why save my orts?

Some stitchers claim to throw their orts outside for the birds, but this kinda makes me cringe. While I know they are doing it with the best of intentions, it's actually quite harmful to birds. The dyes used to colour the floss can be toxic, and strings that are too long can become tangled around birds legs, neck, etc. On the bright side, you can save your orts for many other cool projects.

There are stitchers who just save their orts in a jar and end up with a time capsule of past projects stitched. If you look at Pinterest, the ideas on what you can do with ort are endless. Here are just a few:

  • Coasters
  • Jewellery
  • Bowls
  • Picture Frames
  • Bookmarks
  • Needle Minders
  • Magnets
  • Tea Lights

Do you save your orts? Let me know in the comments below!