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Fancy stitches are decorative
embroidery stitches used for special effects, for
Begin with a back stitch, not a knot. Where
a backstitch will be visible, allow a length of thread to
fall across the wrong side and catch it into stitches
made on right side. Finish a line with two tiny
backstitches. This was just the beginning of a
series of fancy stitches.
Running stitch is used for decorative designs; two rows in
contrasting colors, groups of two or three, diagonal
stitch: Outline the line of design with running
stitches, and with contrasting thread go over and under
stitches, using a blunt needle, but not through fabric,
to get an effect like twisted cord.
Backstitch with heavy thread for flower stems and to
emphasize tops of hems.
Stem stitch is made over line of backstitches with tiny
slanting stitches working from left to right. Gives a
fairly heavy trimming line.
stitch is heavier than stem stitch. Make stitches
straight towards you as in over-handing or
Chain stitch: Bring thread out from wrong side, insert
needle at same point and take a stitch, holding loop of
thread with left thumb. For a different effect, whip over
chains in a contrasting color. Used for stitching in a
line especially on peasant type clothes.
Magic or checkered
chain is made like chain with two contrasting
threads in needle. Keep one color to left holding thread
under thumb, make stitch with other color. Bring second
color to the left for the next stitch and hold under
thumb. Continue. Stitches of chain are in alternating
Lazy daisy is an elongated chain in a flower
Ladder or square
chain is made like a regular chain except that
needle is inserted, not in the same hole, but to the
right. A slanting downward stitch is made for each chain
from right to left.
Feathered chain: Make one loop, slanted to left of center.
Below and to the right of center, take a small upward
slanting stitch; make a chain stitch. Take a slanted,
small upward stitch below and to the left;
Outline stitch or
crewel: Make short upward stitches, keeping thread
to right, and bring needle out a little below point of
insertion in a straight line, or slightly to left of
center line. Or, work from left to right. More than one
row may be used for heavier effect. Outline stitch is
used for a fine, distinct decorative
Blanket stitch: Hold thread to left with thumb, insert
needle about ¼ inch up, make stitch down through loop.
Used for thread carriers, dainty edge trims, edges of
heavy materials which would be too bulky to fold
Closed blanket stitch: Make slanting stitches, first to one side,
then to other, with stitches meeting at top, thus forming
For blanket stitches, different feather
stitches, cross stitch and French knot see our Fancy Stitches