Want to learn the basics of hand embroidery with an easy online workshop – totally free?
Sign up for Embroidery 101 here. You’ll learn how to get started, the tools and supplies you’ll need, the four most basic stitches, how to transfer your pattern and how to display your work.
If you already know the basics – sign up for Embroidery 201. It’s also free! You’ll learn how to stitch on specialty fabrics like felt and stretchy T-shirts. Plus you’ll learn lots and lots and LOTS more stitches – all my favorites!
There are a lot of outline stitches you can use for different effects when you’re embroidering by hand – the running stitch is the easiest.
It’s a great stitch to start with – the first one I teach to beginning stitchers.
So watch the video and get stitching!
Remember – the “correct” way to do running stitch is where the length of your stitches is equal to the length of the space between the stitches. But that’s not the only way to do it!
I prefer to have more stitch and less space. Every once in a while, depending on the effect I’m going for – maybe raindrops? – I might want to have spaces longer than my stitches. It’s totally up to you!
If you want to practice your running stitch, here’s a free pattern to try. It uses just that one stitch!
Get the Raining Rainbows embroidery pattern here.
You can use the running stitch for more than embroidery. It’s the stitch I use for all my Big Stitch Quilting! Here’s a little peek at a project.
If you look closely you can see that the space between my stitches is WAY smaller than the stitches themselves.
If you want to practice the Big Stitch use of running stitches, here’s a free project to try.
Click here to go to the Big Stitch Polkadot Coasters pattern.
Hi Wendy. Thank you for your embroidery tutorials – at least on these I’m a bit more familiar 🙂 my grandmother taught me when I was a little girl! I have a doubt – which is the best stitch to embroider words? Thanks again,
I usually use backstitch for words – it works well for the tight turns that are in some letters. I also somtimes use split stitch because I like the raised texture, but it can be tricky if the curves are tight.
Wendi, thanks for the tip 🙂
where could i find some patterns to begin with
You can find a bunch of patterns in my shop at http://shinyhappyworld.bigcartel.com/category/embroidery-patterns. If you especially want to practice running stitch I recommend this pattern. http://shinyhappyworld.bigcartel.com/product/it-s-raining-rainbows-embroidery-pattern-pdf It’s all running stitch. 🙂
Embroidering on fleece seems to me to have problems. Doesn’t fit into standard hoop. And the split stitch really flattens out. Any suggestions?
Any time you embroider on a fabric with fluff or pile (fleece, velvet, corduroy, etc.) you need to use a thicker thread.
Can you tell me how o end the stitching neatly?
Also i noticed that you have a round frame around the fabric? What is that? Is that to tighten the fabric? Do I need one? Easy to use?
Here’s a video showing how to tie off your ends. http://wendigratz.blogspot.com/2011/08/how-to-tie-off-thread-on-back-of-your.html
That round frame is an embroidery hoop. I use them for all my stitching – it holds the fabric nice and taught while I stitch. This is the kind I use. http://shinyhappyworld.bigcartel.com/product/7-inch-embroidery-hoop and http://shinyhappyworld.bigcartel.com/product/4-inch-embroidery-hoop
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