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Cross-stitched "Battle of Grunwald" or how the probably largest, manually prepared cross-stitch on the world was created.

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Battle of Grunwald
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  "The Battle" pattern was created with HaftiX. The program is available here: "Download" page as well as the application manuals.
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What is the "Battle of Grunwald" project?

    The "Battle of Grunwald" or more simply the "Battle" is a name of a spontaneous project consisting in cross-stitching Jan Matejko's painting "Battle of Grunwald" in its natural size.
    Originators are Ms. Janina Panek and Mr. Adam Panek from Dzialoszyn (Poland). The inspiration came from Adam, who observing Janina at cross-stitching, made a joke: 'You cross-stitch so much that up to now you would cross-stitch the "Battle of Grunwald"'. This is how it started. The seed of a crazy thought, many of which never see the light of day, has undertaken a real shape through the efficient work of the organisers.
    The project coincides with 600th anniversary of the Battle which is coming forward and the date of 15 July 2010 was set as the final date for finishing the works.
    "Battle of Grunwald" is one the most known, valuable and recognizable Polish paintings. It is also characterised with its enormous size. Its author, Jan Matejko, eternised on it the scenes of one of the largest battles of the Middle Ages in Europe which took place on 15 July 1410 between the forces of the Teutonic Order and united Polish-Lithuanian forces and less numerous reinforcement troops of Ruthenians, Tatars as well as people from Moldavia and Czech.
    This site is created in remembrance of the accomplishment and it contains a set of information about the abovementioned work. It is worth to write about it because the cross-stitch is unique in many regards.

Basic information about the "Battle of Grunwald" cross-stitch

    The cross-stitch pattern contains 50 parts but at the very bottom of the image the parts are more than three times lower than the other ones, therefore during cross-stitching they were connected on a one piece of canvas with parts neighbouring from the top. So, there are 40 parts which will comprise the image.

Division of the pattern into parts
Battle of Grunwald - division

The "Battle" in numbers:
Expected size of cross-stitch9,87 m x 4,26 m (32.38 x 13.97 feet)
Real size of cross-stitch9.20 x 4.05 m
Size of the pattern4304 x 1835 crosses (7 897 840)
Volume of patternThe pattern consists of 50 books, each 20-77 pages (altogether: 3,270 pages), excluding legends and covers.
Number of colours:220
Average number of colours in one part:100
Theoretical length of threads used:150 km (93 miles)
Real length of threads used:unknown, but it will be much longer than 90 km (56 miles), the initial calculations did not take into consideration long ways on the reverse side of the cross-stitch
Works preparation time6 months (June 2008 - December 2008)
Cross-stitch creation time1 year 9 months (December 2008 - August 2010)
Pattern creation time1 year 3 months (November 2008 - February 2010)
Estimated real cross-stitching time 4.5 working years

    The pattern was designed by Grzegorz Zochowski with use of HaftiX application. All parts of the pattern were created at once which took several days including tests and preparation of the photo but they were not optimised. Next, each part was manually simplified and corrected. It took several dozen months in stages but resulted in saving at least one month per one part of cross-stitch. Number of colours after manual editing was reduced by ca. 90, reaching the average value of 100 colours per part.

    Both the pattern and some fragments of the cross-stitch were created "after hours", since a part of people participating in the project works professionally and has family duties.


    June 2008 - Mr. Adam Panek turns to Grzegorz Zochowski, the author of HaftiX application with a request to prepare the pattern of the "Battle". In the nearest days the first attempt to process a photo found in the Internet into the cross-stitch pattern takes place. It aims at testing the potential of HaftiX and not preparing the very pattern itself. It is known from the beginning that there are no generally available photos of sufficient quality to be used for this purpose and it will not be worth to get involved in cross-stitching a giant if it is impossible to do it satisfactorily. Search for possibility to get or take a picture starts.

    July - September 2008 - search and selection of supplier of materials (canvas, threads) in progress. The scale of enterprise is far beyond financial possibilities of the organisers. Therefore, the organisers are looking for a thread manufacturer who would be the official sponsor of the project in exchange for materials. Talks and negotiations with one of them are being held.
    Reproduction of the "Battle" in electronic form is purchased.
    The "Penelopa" circle, active at the House of Culture in Dzialoszyn announces a cross-stitch competition. The first group declaring the willingness to cross-stitch parts of the painting emerges from the participants.

    October 2008 - The sponsor requires samples of patterns and cross-stitch to be prepared. First parts of the pattern are created. They are handed over to the sponsor, along with other information required by it. The sponsor pays attention to colour incompliance of one of elements with the original and withholds its support. The remark was justified - the analysis of the purchased photo reveals a clumsy modification on some graphic application. The first copies of the pattern go to rubbish bin.
    On 29 October the complaint procedure concerning the photo of the "Battle" starts. Ideas appear on taking own photo in the National Museum.

    November 2008 - change of supplier of materials. In the negotiations it is settled that it would not give them for free but sell in preferential prices - almost five times cheaper than in a shop which so and so requires high amounts to be collected. Adam Panek starts a many-month crusade for the "Battle". He will be the main catalyst of the enterprise as far as financial matters are concerned.

    On 20 November the complaint is admitted and we receive a high-quality photo. 50 parts of "raw" pattern and several parts of optimised patterns are created immediately since for 29 November the first meeting of organisers with the pattern author is planned along with handover of first several parts of the patterns. As the first, the smallest, lower parts of the image are prepared since it will be quicker to prepare them and the stitchers will be able to start work.

    January 2009 - the thread manufacturer moved its factory in the previous months and changes production technology. It turns out that the threads of the new batch stain. The cross-stitching women have colourful fingers. Feedback goes to the manufacturer's representative and the whole batch of threads is replaced.

Ms. Janina Panek with her part of the pattern. Person looking to the left - Ms. Joanna Galkowska who also cross-stitches the "Battle".
Janina Panek

    September 2009 - on 13 September a family picnic is organised in Dzialoszyn - "Farewell to the Summer" - the profit is appropriated for implementation of the "Battle of Grunwald" project. Two days later, the first photos of cross-stitch fragments are published at

    January 2010 - there is a shortage of colours used in the "Battle" on the market within several hundred kilometres from Dzialoszyn.

    February 2010 - on 10 February the last part of the pattern is created.
    At the end of the month all parts of the pattern are assigned to their stitchers.

    March 2010 - on 5 March one person gets suddenly sick - people willing to take her work are looked for. On 7 March a replacement person is selected. Two days later she receives a set of materials and continues interrupted work.
    An attempt to piece two parts together.
    Slowly the legal status of the work being created and property rights are constituted and cleared out slowly.

Four parts of the cross-stitch pieced together.

4 May 2010

6 July 2010.

    30 August 2010, 1620 - embroidery is finished.

Last cross.

    11 September 2010 - first unofficial public show.

Part of the embroidery.

Dobryszyce (Poland), 25 September 2010 - befor official show.

The stitchers and organizers.

Kleszczow 26 September 2010.


Janina Panek
Adam Panek
Malgorzata Dzwonek
Good spirit.
Grzegorz Zochowski
Pattern author.
Individual parts of the cross-stitch
x1 y1
Person stitching: ElZbieta Kowalska

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x2 y1
Person stitching: Janina Panek

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x3 y1
Person stitching: Anna Krol

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x4 y1
Person stitching: Zofia Osinska

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x5 y1
Person stitching: Barbara Prudlak

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x6 y1
Person stitching: ElZbieta Kowalska

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x7 y1
Person stitching: Anna Kusmierek

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x8 y1
Person stitching: Jan Andzinski

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x9 y1
Person stitching: Wieslawa Sztandera

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x10 y1
Person stitching: Monika and Slawomir Derecki

Size: 407x433 crosses (176 231)
x1 y2
Person stitching: Ewa Kiedos

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x2 y2
Person stitching: Lidia Tokarska

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x3 y2
Person stitching: Anna Krol

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x4 y2
Person stitching: Anna Stochnialek

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x5 y2
Person stitching: Zenobia Kulka

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x6 y2
Person stitching: Wanda and Dorota Humieniuk

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x7 y2
Person stitching: Dorota Bernys

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x8 y2
Person stitching: Dorota Humieniuk and Teresa Pegza

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x9 y2
Person stitching: Wanda and Dorota Humieniuk

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x10 y2
Person stitching: Monika Derecka

Size: 407x433 crosses (176 231)
x1 y3
Person stitching: Wioletta Skowronska

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x2 y3
Person stitching: Wanda and Dorota Humieniuk

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x3 y3
Person stitching: Aleksandra Filocha

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x4 y3
Person stitching: Elzbieta Sasula

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x5 y3
Person stitching: Janina Panek

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x6 y3
Person stitching: Barbara Frankiewicz

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x7 y3
Person stitching: Danuta Jalocha

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x8 y3
Person stitching: Teresa Pegza and Teresa Pegza

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x9 y3
Person stitching: Ksawera Wojciechowska

Size: 433x433 crosses (187 489)
x10 y3
Person stitching: Justyna Galczak

Size: 407x433 crosses (176 231)
x1 y4 + x1 y5
Person stitching: Jolanta Liotka

Size: 433x536 crosses (232 088)
x2 y4 + x2 y5
Person stitching: Urszula Kur

Size: 433x536 crosses (232 088)
x3 y4 + x3 y5
Person stitching: Wieslawa Paweloszek

Size: 433x536 crosses (232 088)
x4 y4 + x4 y5
Person stitching: Malgorzata Zajac

Size: 433x536 crosses (232 088)
x5 y4 + x5 y5
Person stitching: Janina Panek

Size: 433x536 crosses (232 088)
x6 y4 + x6 y5
Person stitching: Barbara Walasinska

Size: 433x536 crosses (232 088)
x7 y4 + x7 y5
Person stitching: Joanna Galkowska

Size: 433x536 crosses (232 088)
x8 y4 + x8 y5
Person stitching: Dorota Humieniuk and Teresa Pegza

Size: 433x536 crosses (232 088)
x9 y4 + x9 y5
Person stitching: Dorota Bernys

Size: 433x536 crosses (232 088)
x10 y4 + x10 y5
Person stitching: Marzena Marczak

Size: 407x536 crosses (218 152)


    (PL) Image gallery

    (PL) Videos showing work in the HaftiX application on the last part of the pattern part 1, part 2.

    Exemplary part of the patterns (x7 y3) in a form of HFT file to be downloaded (2.3 MB). You need HaftiX to open it.

    Site devoted to the painting of Jan Matejko "Battle of Grunwald".

    Site devoted to the battle of Grunwald.

Account number.

    We kindly ask for help in completing and maintaining the "Battle". Money paid to the account no.

    Account no (IBAN): PL 95 1140 2004 0000 3102 5288 3230
    Bank name and address: BRE Bank S.A. INTERNET BANKING, al. Mickiewicza 10, 90-050 Lodz
    SORT CODE - 11402004)

    will ensure the basis necessary for finishing, maintaining and public presentation of the cross-stitch and will be used to re-finance own contribution of persons involved in the project. Please name of transfer "Battle of Grunwald". Thank you.

Media about the "Battle".

    14.09.2009 (PL) Radio ZW Family picnic in Dzialoszyn
    16.02.2010 (PL) Gazeta Wyborcza
    16.02.2010 (PL) Gazeta Czestochowa - Teutonic Knights of milions crosses
    16.02.2010 (PL) Gazeta Bialystok - Teutonic Knights of eight million crosses
    18.02.2010 (PL) TVP TeleExpress
    18.02.2010 (PL) Radio ZW Cross-stitched Grunwald
    19.02.2010 (PL) Radio RMF FM - "Wstawaj szkoda dnia"
    20.02.2010 (PL) TVP Wiadomosci
    20.02.2010 (PL) Fakty TVN They are cross-stitching the battle of Grunwald
    20.02.2010 (PL) TOK FM
    25.02.2010 (PL) TVP INFO
    21.03.2010 (PL) Gosc Niedzielny nr 11/2010
    04.04.2010 (PL) Niedziela nr 14 (dodatek "Niedziela Czestochowska") "Stitching Battle!" ( scan1, scan2 )
    08.05.2010 (PL) Express ilustrowany (dodatek "Blizej Ciebie Tygodnik Powiatu Pabianickiego" nr 18/476) "Grunwald from needle..."
    15.05.2010 (PL) WENA 3/2010 - "Battle of Grunwald"
    08.06.2010 (PL) - "How womens from Pabianice stitching Grunwald"
    10.06.2010 (PL) Gazeta Radmoszczanska 23/2010 "Needle, thread and knights" (PDF)
    25.06.2010 (PL) Serwis Niedziela - "Embroidery 'Battle of Grunwald'"
    07.07.2010 (PL) TVN 24 "Prosto z Polski" - "Grunwald in 8 mln crosses"
    08.07.2010 (PL) Przyjaciolka nr 14/2010 - "Copying Grunwald with needle and chisel"
    09.07.2010 (PL) Gazeta Bialystok - "Krzyzacy z krzyzykow na finiszu"
    15.07.2010 (PL) Maleman nr 11 - "Krajobraz przed bitwa"
    17.07.2010 (PL) TVN Fakty Sztuka bitewna
    12.08.2010 (PL) Zycie na Goraco - "Kobiety zdobeda Grunwald"
    12.09.2010 (PL) Gazeta Lodź - "'Bitwa pod Grunwaldem' z osmiu milionow krzyzyków"
    13.09.2010 (PL) Radio ZW - "Pokaz obrazu 'Bitwa pod Grunwaldem'"
    17.09.2010 (PL) "Nasz Tygodnik", dodatek do "Dziennika Lodzkiego" - "Haftowane cudo"
    24.09.2010 (PL) "Dziennik Lodzki" Kleszczow: haftowana "Bitwa pod Grunwaldem"
    25.09.2010 (PL) "Gazeta Wyborcza" - Prezentacja haftowanej kopii obrazu "Bitwy pod Grunwaldem"
    25.09.2010 (PL) TVP "Teleexpress" - Wyhaftowana "Bitwa pod Grunwaldem"
    27.09.2010 (PL) "Dziennik Lodzki" Haftowana "Bitwa pod Grunwaldem"
    27.09.2010 (PL) "Niedziela" - Z krzyzykami na Krzyzakow
    27.09.2010 (PL) Telewizja NTL Radomsko - Krzyzykowa Bitwa pod Grunwaldem
    27.09.2010 (PL) "Zycie Pabianic" - Nasze Bitwe pod Grunwaldem haftowaly
    30.09.2010 e-Belchatow - portal informacyjny - Haftowana replika
    05.10.2010 e-Belchatow - portal informacyjny - Bitwa w Belchatowie
    and many Internet websites quoting information from PAP (Polish Press Agency) or any other media.

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