Cross stitching from a suitcase: an interview with My Lilac Suitcase


03 December 2021
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Get to know Tatiana Romero, a.k.a. My Lilac Suitcase, who shares how she decided her business name, her colourful ‘Casas Coloridas’ design, and top tips for beginner cross stitchers…

Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and your business?

My name is Tatiana Romero but everyone knows me as Tati, who carries the suitcase in Mi Maleta Lila (more on that below!). I started my cross stitch brand in 2013 when I lived in my hometown Maracaibo in Venezuela – I currently live in Mexico City. My native language is Spanish but I offer my designs in both English and Spanish.

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How did you decide your business name?

The name ‘Mi Maleta Lila’ (‘My Lilac Suitcase’ in English) is because, for a time, I stored all my cross stitching equipment and materials in a suitcase. Now that I have a space at home for this work, my suitcase comes in to my mind where I keep every thought while boarding my lilac world and I share them on my blog, store and my social networks.

Tatiana Romero Purli Spring cross stitch

Purli Spring

How did you get into cross stitching?

I’ve done all kinds of crafts since I was little, but I started with cross stitch around 2009. A coworker introduced me to cross stitching and since then I’ve taught myself the craft. I started searching the internet for how to cross stitch, what materials to use and which ones were better and I spent a lot of time reading instructions on designer websites and magazines.

Why did you decide to start your own business?

I started with a cross stitch blog in Spanish – where I still post, teach how to do cross stitch and tips for beginners and experienced cross stitchers, while stitching designs from my favourite designers, eventually modifying them to my liking – until I decided to stop it and work on my own style. I thought that surely many stitching friends would like my designs, so then I decided to make it available to everyone.

Tatiana Romero rabbit cross stitch design

Where do you get your design inspiration/what inspires you?

I work with cheerful color palettes and modern and cosy designs that allow us to introduce new cross stitchers to art. Nature and everything you can do outdoors inspires me. Each space that I can customise with cross stitch catches my attention.

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What’s your favourite cross stitch creation to-date? Can we see?!

One of my all-time favourites is ‘Casas Coloridas’ – a design of colonial houses in my hometown, with vibrant colours and a cheerful air.

Tatiana Romero Casas Coloridas cross stitch

Tatiana Romero Casas Coloridas cross stitch with thread

Casas Coloridas

Crafts are known to be excellent for wellbeing – how vital do you find crafting for your own mindfulness and wellbeing?

I started with cross stitch to control my anxiety and I turned this practice into my daily meditation. I see the importance of cross stitch in the wellbeing of the cross stitchers who practice it, so I’ve dedicated myself to teaching on my blog, YouTube channel and networks every detail that helps improve skills while having fun.

Tatiana Romero YouTube teaching

What are your top tips for beginners/those who’d like to start cross stitch? 

  • Enjoy it – don’t stress looking for perfection.
  • If you want to do it better every day there’s a lot of content on the web and in magazines that teach you tips to improve your stitching. Read and practise. 
  • Ask other experienced stitchers how they do certain stitches you need to learn.
  • Start with small projects, requiring few threads.
  • Keep your material organised – this will help you start and finish your projects with ease.
  • Keep your hands clean at all times to keep your work impeccable.

Are you into any other crafts and if so, what are they?

I love crochet, traditional embroidery and sewing, although I don't have much time to do anything else as I dedicate myself 100% to cross stitch!

Tell us about your craft room/work space…

When I design I do it in my small embroidery space – a minimalist space, with light colours. I like that everything is organised and stored.

Find out more

Etsy: mimaletalila.etsy.com
Instagram: @MiMaletaLila 
YouTube: /MiMaletaLila


Look out for an adorable set of Christmas cross stitch charts from Tati, coming to the blog soon… In the meantime, get started with our cross stitch guide for beginners.