Perfect OUTLINE STITCH (Embroidery Stitching tutorials)

Learn to sew the Outline stitch, one of the best embroidery stitches for outlining.This stitch is best for stitching curved outlines.

outline stitch

Outline stitch, also known as Thread-up stem stitch, is very similar to stem stitch. If you know how to work a stem stitch, you can easily do the outline stitch. This is used (obviously) to give an outline to embroidery designs; In fact, a perfect outlining stitch.

Checkout instructions for other outline stitches like Back stitch ( & 2 variations),  stem stitch & 3 variations, chain stitch & 12 variations , Running stitch & 9 variations, Blanket stitch & 11 variations , Holbein stitch Pick stitch

The Outline stitch is a must-know stitch if you do any embroidery. One of the first stitches you learn as a beginner. This is the best one to use when sewing the outline of tight curves. It also works great for complicated linear designs.

The most important thing to note when sewing this stitch is to

The most important thing to note when sewing this stitch is ALWAYS to bring up the needle on the left side of the previous stitch, but always on the stitching line. Keep the Thread up above the needle while making this stitch ALWAYS. The stitches are kept even and small.

This instruction assumes that you are starting the stitch from the left side. Each stitch can be 1/4 inch or smaller stitches. And all of them should be of the same size.

How to do the Outline Stitch

Step 1.

Thread your needle with the embroidery floss. I am using two strands. Knot the thread at the end.

Step 2.

Bring up the needle from the back of the cloth with the knot anchored at the back at the start of the stitching line.

Step 3.

Take the needle down a stitch ( 1-2). Then bring up the needle almost half way back  (2-3 ) ( with thread kept up).OUTLINE STITCH

The above picture shows the sequence of stitches. Please note that the stitches are all made strictly on the stitching line.

Step 4.

Repeat for the whole design.

Depending on your design and the effect required, you can make a single line or double rows of this stitch. When neatly worked, it looks splendid, outlining a design.

outline stitch

If you have made the outline, you should fill it too. There are many ways to fill embroidery designs. You can checkout 6 of my favourite filling stitches here.

filling stitches

Extra info : Outline stitch is the first stitch used on top in smocking . Each plait is taken up in one stitch as you work with the gathered fabric with outline stitches. Check out the tutorial for smocking. It is also used in Redwork.

Related Posts:

Hand embroidery FAQ

Hand embroidery stitches couching stitches

how to embroidery flowers

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Author: Sarina Tariq

Hi, I love sewing, fabric, fashion, embroidery, doing easy DIY projects and then writing about them. Hope you have fun learning from sewguide as much as I do. If you find any mistakes here, please point it out in the comments.