This morning I timed myself doing a short row of cross stitch. I didn't rush, and I didn't dawdle, I just wanted a fairly accurate idea of how long the stitching takes.
I took 5 minutes, 35 seconds to complete one row of 20 stitches. This averages out at 16.75 seconds per complete cross stitch (both directions).
My Kewpie pattern measures 200 x 166 stitches. A total of 41,500 stitches.
On that basis, it would take me 695,125 seconds to stitch the entire pattern. (193 hours, 5 minutes and 25 seconds).
This estimation doesn't take account of the additional time needed to thread needles, bind off thread, count, un-pick and re-stitch, swear and re-count, un-tangle thread, etc. With this in mind, I have rounded the figure up to a very reasonable 220 hours.
If we were to consider a working week is 37.5 hours, it would take a couple of hours shy of 6 working weeks to complete the pattern.
Considering that the minimum wage in the UK is currently £5.52/hour, it would cost £1,242 in minimum wage man-hours to stitch this pattern (not including the purchase of materials, etc).
For the benefit of my American readership (I know you're out there - Google Analytics tells me so!) - this is US $2,462.89 at today's exchange rate.
Wow. I dread to think how much that would work out as on my actual salary. :oS