As in many areas of interest, cross stitch has terms that are unique to our hobby. The following is an explanation of terms from the cross stitcher's language.
Graph. This is the pattern or design you chose to stitch. There are thousands to choose from.
Evenweave fabric. The fabric for cross stitch is woven in an even manner so that you know exactly where to place your needle. To keep the fabric from raveling either sew the edge on a sewing machine or use Fray Stop to prevent fraying. (or stitch around edge by hand with needle and thread)
Needle. A tapestry needle is used, usually a size 24 or 26 (size 26 is smaller than size 24). This type of needle has a blunt point and a large eye. Use a size 24 for stitching on 14 count fabric; use a size 26 for fabric with a stitch count
greater than 14.
Floss. Embroidery floss is a cotton thread used for stitching. Floss has 6 strands, but usually you will use only 2 strands at a time for stitching and 1 strand for backstitching. On hardanger fabric (22 count) you usually will use only 1 stand; on 11 count Aida use 3 strands to stitch and 2 to backstitch. Most books and graphs suggest either DMC or Anchor brands. However, designers are starting to use the hand-dyed threads more and more.
Embroidery Hoop. A plastic embroidery hoop is helpful to hold the fabric while you stitch. Remove the fabric from the hoop when you are not stitching to keep from getting "hoop marks".
Scissors. You can start out with any pair of scissors, but pretty soon you will want to get a nice pair of small embroidery scissors. Get a good quality pair with sharp points. A good pair of scissors makes stitching a lot more fun.