The Running Stitch for Hand Embroidery

How to do a running stitch video tutorial

How to do a running stitch for hand embroidery video tutorial

One of the most basic hand embroidery stitches is the running stitch and I have made a video tutorial showing you how to do it. It is very simple and you may be wondering if someone really needs a tutorial for it. Well, over the last ten years of teaching in a classroom and teaching sewing in workshops (and on YouTube), I’ve learnt to not make any assumptions of prior knowledge. It may seem simple to those who have had experience with sewing, but to the beginning sewer this stitch could be just the start of a brand new sewing journey!

Let’s get into it then!

embroidery sampler easy sewing for beginners

How to do a Running Stitch for Hand Embroidery

What You will need:

You may like to check out these tutorials if you need help with getting your fabric ready in the embroidery hoop and the needle threaded up and ready to stitch.

Step by Step Video for How to do a Running Stitch

Or you can watch the video on Youtube here

See the whole Hand Embroidery for Beginners Playlist

Subscribe to my YouTube Channel here!

See which 6 hand embroidery supplies I recommend for beginners

6 essential hand embroidery supplies for beginners featured image

Two methods for Doing a Running Stitch

It’s always best to start with the needle coming up from the underside when doing hand embroidery. This hides all the little thread tails at the back nicely. To start the running stitch you pass the needle and thread all the way up through the fabric then, ensuring you have moved the needle over the required stitch length, you poke the needle and thread back down through the fabric and pull the thread all the way through. Repeat this process to create the running stitch. Up and down is all it is! This method is called the stab method and is great for beginners just learning hand embroidery.

running stitch example

The second method is called the sewing method. With this method you get the thread up through to the top of the fabric. Next you poke the needle through the fabric just like in the photo demonstration below. I use my other hand underneath the fabric to help guide the needle through in the right spot. The sewing method tends to need both hands working together. In the video above I show you how to finish off the running stitch in a way that keeps the back looking neat and tidy as well.

running stitch sewing method

Why not download my free embroidery sampler to practice your stitches as you learn them!

Free hand embroidery Design Download

There you have it. Be sure to check out the video instructions if the photo instructions are still unclear.

If you want to combine the running stitch with a great sewing project then I recommend this Sashiko denim tote bag sewing tutorial over at Vicky Myers Creations. The Sashiko method is a traditional embroidery style from Japan, which originally used the running stitch to repair and reinforce clothing. These days it is used as a decorative form of stitching and really is quite effective and looks like lots of fun to do!

running stitch sample

Until Next time, happy sewing!


How to do a running stitch square


Posted on

15 June, 2017

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