There are many different types of stitches that can be used for sewing. In this comprehensive guide, we will discuss 19 of the most common stitches. Each stitch has its own unique purpose and can be used for a variety of projects. Whether you are a beginner sewer or an experienced seamstress, this guide is sure to teach you something new!
1. Decorative Stitches
A decorative stitch is a type of stitch that is used for decoration on fabric. There are many different types of decorative stitches, and each one has its own unique look. Some decorative stitches are simple and easy to learn, while others can be more complex.
Decorative stitches can be used in a variety of ways. They can be used to add embellishments to a project, or to create borders or designs. Decorative stitches can also be used to make fabric look more interesting and unique.
If you are interested in learning how to do decorative stitches, there are many different tutorials available online. There are also many books and magazines that focus on decorative stitching. If you are lucky, you may even be able to find a class or workshop in your area that teaches decorative stitching techniques.
2. Fagoting Stitch
Fagoting is an embroidery stitch that can be used to create beautiful decorative edges. It is made up of a series of small, looped stitches, and can be used on both thin and thick fabrics. Fagoting can be worked in a variety of different colors, making it a great way to add some extra color and detail to your projects.
To work the fagoting stitch, you will need a threaded needle and some fabric. Begin by bringing the needle up through the fabric, then make a small loop with the thread. Bring the needle back down through the fabric near where it first came up, then make another loop with the thread. Repeat this process, making sure to keep the loops close together. You can experiment with the size and spacing of the loops to create different effects. When you’re finished, tie off the thread and trim any excess.
Fagoting is a great way to add some extra detail to your projects, and it’s a technique that can be used on a variety of different fabrics. Give it a try the next time you’re working on a project!
3. Straight stitch
Straight stitch is a type of stitch that is used to sew fabrics together. It is created by passing the needle through the fabric in a straight line. This type of stitch is most commonly used for seams and hems. Straight stitch can also be used for decorative purposes, such as quilting.
When using straight stitch, it is important to ensure that the fabric is properly aligned. This can be done by placing pins along the seam line, or by using a fabric marker. It is also important to make sure that the needle is inserted straight into the fabric, and not at an angle. Crooked stitches can cause the fabric to pucker.
Straight stitch can be sewn by hand or by machine. When sewing by hand, the stitches should be tight and even. When sewing with a machine, the stitch length should be set to medium or long. The stitch width should also be set to medium or wide. This will ensure that the stitches are adequately spaced apart, and that the seam will be strong.
If you are new to sewing, it is a good idea to start with straight stitch. Once you are comfortable with straight stitch, you can move on to other types of stitches, such as zigzag or French seam.
4. Slant Pin Stitch
The slant pin stitch is a type of embroidery stitch that can be used for outlining or filling in designs. It’s named for the way the needle moves in relation to the fabric – at an angle, rather than straight up and down. This makes it a good choice for adding detail and texture to your work.
To do the slant pin stitch, first make a small loop with the thread, and hold it between your thumb and forefinger. Then, take the needle and insert it into the fabric at the desired location. Move the needle upwards until it’s almost out of the fabric, and then angle it over to the side so that it enters the fabric again. Pull the thread through, and repeat the process until you’ve finished the stitch.
The slant pin stitch can be used on a variety of fabrics, including linen, cotton, and even silk. It’s best for projects that require a lot of detail, such as lace or doilies. However, it’s also a good choice for basic embroidery designs, and can be used to add a touch of personality to any project.
5. Ermine Filling Stitch
An ermine filling stitch is a type of decorative stitch that is often used to add embellishments to fabric. The stitch is created by making small, evenly spaced stitches in a row, and then pulling the thread tight to create a pleated effect. This type of stitch can be used on both light and dark fabrics and can be used to create a wide variety of designs.
One of the advantages of the ermine filling stitch is that it is relatively easy to learn and can be used to create a wide variety of designs. It is also a good choice for beginners, because it does not require a lot of experience or skill to create beautiful results. The stitch can be used on a variety of fabrics, including cotton, silk, and wool. It can also be used to create a variety of textures, including smooth, ridged, and bumpy.
The ermine filling stitch is a great choice for adding embellishments to fabric. It can be used to create simple designs or more complex patterns, and can be adapted to fit a wide variety of fabrics. It is also a good choice for beginners, because it is easy to learn and produces beautiful results.
6. Blanket stitch
The blanket stitch is a popular hand sewing stitch used for hemming and seaming. It can also be used for decorative purposes, such as adding detail to a project. The stitch is worked by passing the needle in and out of the fabric, with a loop of thread left on the surface of the fabric between each stitch. This loop can be pulled tight to create a firm seam or hem. The blanket stitch can also be used as a basic running stitch, by simply passing the needle in and out of the fabric without leaving a loop on the surface.
The blanket stitch is a versatile stitch that can be used for a variety of purposes. It is easy to learn, and can be worked with a variety of thread colors and fabrics. It is a great stitch for beginners, and can be used to create simple or detailed projects.
7. Chain stitch
Chain stitches are also called linked stitches because they are created by linking a series of single stitches together. This makes them very sturdy, which is why they are often used for seams and hems.
To make a chain stitch, first make a loop with the thread and hold it between your thumb and first finger. Then, insert the needle into the loop and pull the thread through. Repeat this process to create a chain of stitches.
When you are finished, tie a knot in the thread to secure it. You can also use a stitch holder to keep the stitches in place until you are ready to sew them down.
8. Cross stitch
The art of cross stitching is centuries old, and it remains a popular form of needlework to this day. Cross stitching is a type of embroidery in which you stitch X-shaped designs on a piece of fabric using thread. The beauty of cross stitching is that it’s both easy and relaxing to do, and the results can be quite stunning.
To get started, all you need is a cross stitch pattern, some fabric, thread, a needle, and scissors. The fabric can be any color or type that you like, but it’s best to choose something with a relatively even texture so the stitches will show up clearly. You can buy cross stitch patterns online or at your local craft store, or you can print your own designs.
Once you have your pattern and fabric, it’s time to start stitching. First, cut a piece of fabric that’s large enough to fit the pattern perfectly. Then place the pattern on the fabric and secure it with pins. Make sure the design is facing the right way before you begin stitching.
To stitch a cross, simply bring the needle up through the fabric at one corner of the X, then down through the fabric at the opposite corner. Repeat this process until the entire design is complete. Be sure to knot the end of your thread securely each time you change colors.
When you’re finished stitching, remove the pins and trim the fabric edges to create a neat finished edge. Then admire your handiwork!
9. Lazy Daisy Stitch
The lazy daisy stitch is a popular embroidery technique that can be used to add beautiful detail to your projects. This stitch is worked by creating a small loop with the thread, and then bringing the needle up through the middle of the loop. The loop is then pulled tight to create the desired effect.
This stitch can be used to create everything from simple flowers to complex designs, and it can be used on a variety of different fabrics. It is a great option for adding a touch of personality to your projects, and it is also relatively easy to learn. If you are looking for a quick and easy way to add some flair to your embroidery, the lazy daisy stitch is definitely worth a try.
10. Stretch Zigzag Stitch
The stretch zigzag stitch is a great way to finish off the edge of a stretch fabric. It’s easy to do, and it creates a nice, finished look.
To do the stretch zigzag stitch, you’ll need a sewing machine that has a zigzag stitch option. First, fold the fabric so that the edge that you want to finish is facing out. Sew along the edge using the zigzag stitch, making sure to keep the fabric taut as you sew. You may need to adjust the width and length of the stitch depending on the fabric that you’re using.
11. Scallop Stitch
The scallop stitch is a type of embroidery stitch that creates a scalloped edge. It can be used for borders, edging, or filling in designs. To create the stitch, first make a few basic stitches in the desired direction. Then, take the needle up at the point where you want the next scallop to start, and make a small stitch in the opposite direction. Bring the needle back up at the same point, and make a small stitch in the original direction. Repeat this process until you reach the end of the row.
12. Feather stitch
Feather stitch is a type of hand embroidery stitch. It is used to create delicate, detailed designs, and is often seen in traditional folk art. The feather stitch can be worked horizontally, vertically, or diagonally. It can also be combined with other stitches to create more complex patterns.
To work the feather stitch, first make a small, looped stitch. Next, take the needle down through the center of the loop. Bring the needle back up just below the original loop, and insert it into the loop from the front to the back. Finally, bring the needle out through the top of the loop and pull tight. You should now have a small “feather” shape. Repeat these steps to create additional feathers.
The feather stitch is a great way to add delicate detail to your embroidery projects. It can be used on a variety of fabrics, including linen, cotton, and silk. Try using it to add accents to pillowcases, table runners, or other home decor items. You can also use it to embellish clothing, such as blouses, skirts, or hats. Experiment with different colors and thread combinations to create unique designs.
13. Tree Stitch
A tree stitch is a type of embroidery in which you use a running stitch to create a design that looks like a tree. This stitch is usually worked on a piece of fabric that has been folded in half so that the design will be symmetrical when it is finished. You can use any color of thread that you want, and you can vary the size of the stitches to create a more or less detailed design.
The tree stitch is a very versatile stitch that can be used to create many different types of designs. You can use it to create trees, flowers, and other plants, or you can use it to create abstract designs that look like landscapes or nature scenes. The sky is the limit when it comes to the possibilities for designs that can be created with the tree stitch.
14. Zigzag Stitch
A zigzag stitch is a type of stitch that goes back and forth in a zigzag pattern. It’s often used to secure two pieces of fabric together, or to add some extra strength to a seam. Zigzag stitches can also be used to create decorative borders or patterns on fabric. They’re a popular choice for quilting, because they add a bit of extra detail and texture to the finished project.
To sew a zigzag stitch, you’ll need a sewing machine with a zigzag stitch setting. This can usually be found on the machine’s settings dial or menu. Once you’ve selected the zigzag stitch, set the width and length of the stitch to the desired specifications. Then, simply sew along the edge of your fabric in a zigzag pattern. Be sure to backstitch at the beginning and end of each row to secure the stitches in place.
If you’re not comfortable using a sewing machine, you can also sew a zigzag stitch by hand. Just use a sharp needle and strong thread, and sew in a zigzag pattern along the edge of your fabric. This can be a bit tricky, so it might take some practice before you get the hang of it.
Zigzag stitches are a versatile sewing technique that can come in handy for a variety of projects. Whether you’re quilting, hemming a skirt, or reinforcing a seam, a zigzag stitch can be a helpful tool to have in your sewing arsenal.
15. Slant Pin Stitch
The slant pin stitch is a decorative embroidery stitch that can be used to add visual interest and texture to your projects. The stitch is worked by inserting the needle at an angle into the fabric, then bringing it out again in a slanted direction. You can use any type of thread for this stitch, but I recommend using a thicker thread to make the stitch more visible.
Backstitch is a popular embroidery stitch used to add strength and definition to seams. It can be worked in any direction, making it ideal for curves and corners. The stitch is formed by passing the needle up through the fabric from back to front, then down through the fabric again a short distance away. A small loop of thread is left on the surface of the fabric, which is then pulled tight to form a knot.
Backstitch is a versatile stitch that can be used for both decorative and functional purposes. It is a good choice for outlining shapes and adding details to patchwork quilts. Backstitch can be worked in any color, making it a versatile stitch for adding interest to your embroidery projects. Backstitch is easy to learn and is a great choice for beginner embroiderers.
Some tips for working the backstitch
- When starting a new row of stitching, make sure to leave a sufficient tail of thread on the back of the fabric. This will be used to anchor the stitch when you finish.
- To make the stitch tighter, pull on the loop of thread after it has been pulled tight. This will create a knot on the surface of the fabric.
- When working around curves, make sure to keep the stitches loose and fluid. If they are too tight, they will pucker the fabric.
- For a neater finish, trim any excess thread after stitching is complete.
17. French knot
A French knot is a type of knot that is used to create a decorative effect in embroidery. It’s made by wrapping the thread around your finger a few times, then making a small loop and pulling the thread through the loop. You can make French knots in all kinds of different colors and sizes, and they add a lot of detail to your project. French knots are also sometimes called “Irish knots” or “Scottish knots”.
18. Satin stitch
Satin stitch is a type of embroidery that uses a single thread to create a very smooth and even surface. This type of stitching is often used for lettering, filling in large areas, and creating delicate details. It can be used on a wide variety of materials, including fabric, felt, and paper.
To create satin stitch, you will need a threaded needle and some fabric or other material to embroider on. Begin by bringing the needle up through the fabric at the starting point of your stitching. Then, take the needle down in the same spot, but pull the thread taut so that it forms a small loop. Bring the needle up again a short distance away from the first stitch, and repeat the process. Keep stitching in this way until you have filled in the desired area. When you’re finished, tie off the thread on the back of the fabric to secure it.
Satin stitch is a beautiful and versatile embroidery technique that can be used to create stunning pieces of art.
19. Herringbone stitch
The herringbone stitch is a versatile stitch that can be used for a variety of purposes. It is a strong stitch that is perfect for securing seams, and it can also be used to create decorative features on fabric. The herringbone stitch is created by sewing two lines of parallel stitches in opposite directions. This creates a zigzag pattern that gives the stitch its distinctive appearance. The herringbone stitch can be used on both fabric and yarn, and it is a popular choice for knitters and crocheters. The herringbone stitch is simple to learn, and it can be used to create a variety of different patterns.
There are many other types of stitches, but these are some of the most common. Experiment with different stitches to find the ones that work best for your projects. Happy stitching!
Frequently Asked Questions
What Type of Needle Should I Use for Each Stitch?
When it comes to choosing a needle for each stitch, it’s important to consider the type of fabric you’re working with and the size of the stitches. For example, if you’re working with lightweight fabrics, like silk or chiffon, a sharp needle is best as it won’t damage the fabric. Alternatively, a ballpoint needle works best for knits and other stretch fabrics because it won’t snag the fibers. When stitching thicker fabrics, like denim or canvas, an embroidery or topstitching thread should be used along with a sharp or universal point needle to ensure your stitches will hold up.
Are There Any Other Types of Stitches I Should Learn?
If you’re looking to take your stitching skills to the next level, there are certainly a few other types of stitches you should consider learning. Stem stitch, blanket stitch, French knot, lazy daisy stitch and fishbone stitch are just a few of the techniques that will add extra flair to any project. With practice and patience, you can master these techniques and create beautiful works of art with them!
How Do I Know Which Stitch to Use for Different Fabrics?
When you’re starting out with sewing, it can be difficult to know which stitch to use for different fabrics. Different fabrics require different kinds of stitches, so it’s important to understand the differences in order to create a quality project. When working with heavier fabrics, like denim or canvas, a straight stitch is usually best because it provides more strength and durability. For lighter fabrics such as cotton or silk, a zigzag stitch is recommended because it adds flexibility and stretches with the fabric. It’s also important to consider the type of seam you need when selecting a stitch; for example, for seams that need to stretch go for a zigzag stitch instead of a straight one.
What Is the Best Way to Maintain My Stitching Tools?
Maintaining your stitching tools is an important part of sewing. It’s best to keep them clean and sharp to ensure the highest quality of stitches. You can use oil or WD-40 to lubricate metal parts and a soft cloth for cleaning. It’s also important to store your sewing tools in a safe place, away from moisture, dust or any other damaging element. Taking good care of your tools will help them last longer and make them easier to use.
What Are Some Tips for Mastering Different Stitches?
Mastering different stitches can be a challenge, but with some practice and focus it’s certainly possible. Some tips for mastering different stitches are to start off simple by practicing the basic stitches like running stitch and back stitch. Then move up to more complex ones like the French knot or chain stitch. It can also help to take your time and focus on each stitch individually until you feel comfortable with it. Additionally, watching tutorials online and studying diagrams of stitches can provide helpful guidance. Lastly, don’t get discouraged if at first you struggle – just keep practicing!
I’m a stay at home mom with our two kids. I really enjoy doing crafts with my kids however, that is typically a challenge with how limited their attention span can be and how messy it gets. So, I’m always looking for ways to make crafting an enjoyable experience and creating fond memory for all of us.