Rose Embroidery – 12 ways to make embroidered roses easily

Easy but beautiful ways to do rose embroidery
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Ask 5 people in your vicinity about their favourite flower  and 3 of them will say rose. I did and this was so for me.  What is not to love about a rose – the colour, texture, smell and beauty unparalleled among flora. Rose is a divine flower – the flower which is associated with goddesses of love. Rose has a symbolic meaning of love, trust, desire and passion.

To stitch a rose in embroidery is easy. Take any embroidery pattern book and you will find scores of pictures of roses. Infact rose will dominate the pictures of flowers. Once you have transferred the design on to your fabric for embroidery you will have to decide on how to embroider it. That is what this post is all about.

If you would like to design your own rose embroidery designs and learn to draw some easy rose flowers you can check out this post on 5 ways to draw and paint a rose.

easy rose painting

How to stitch Rose in Embroidery

1. Outline stitch rose

Rose stitched with back stitches
Back stitched outline rose

This is the simplest way of stitching a rose. Just the outline is made with any of the outline stitches like stem stitch, Chain stitchback stitch. Here I have used back stitch for the rose and stem stitch for the leaves.

Chain stitch filling the rose design

2. Satin stitched roses

satin stitched petals of the embroidered rose

You can use Satin stitches to fill designs that are less than 1/2 inch in width; more than this and it can look messy. Checkout the post on Satin stitches for more details 

satin stitches filling the rose design

satin stitched petals of roses in embroidery

More details on how to draw and stitch the above design can be found on the tutorial to make a shopping bag

With satin stitch you cannot fill a design which is more than 1/2 inch wide – it will look uneven. There is a method to fill big designs with satin stitch. Make more than one row of satin stitch inside the design and then connect them with straight stitches smoothly and evenly.

Drawing of a rose

Filling the petals with satin stitches

Different colors used to fill petals

This rose embroidery design is from the post on Master the Art of Embroidery on clothing

Rose embroidered with satin stitching inside individual petals

3. Buttonhole stitch roses

Blanket stitches used to embroider outline of the rose petals

Closely made blanket stitches are used to either fill the rose or work on the outline. If you use a cast on stitch rose like the one in the post on 3D flower embroidery post inside the blanket stitched petals it can look extraordinarily pretty. 

3D embroidery flowers - rose made with cast on stitches

4. Silk ribbon embroidery 

ribbon embroidery flowers

Ribbon embroidery work can be used to make the most beautiful roses ever. That too in many types and styles. From simple french knot roses to frilled and gathered roses there are many options for you if you want to work your rose embroidery work with ribbons. Checkout the ribbon embroidery flower tutorial for more details

folded ribbon flowers

5. Woven spider web rose

woven rose

This flower is an easy one and 3 dimensional.

You have to take the full strand of embroidery floss (with 6 threads) twice on a blunt needle. Knot the ends. Take another sharp needle and the same colour thread (one strand) and make a web with 9 tails like the  one in picture below.

Bring up the blunt needle from the center of the star stitch and start to Weave the thread under and over the stitches. Complete the whole circle and then take the needle to the back and knot again.

odd numbered straight stitches are made in a circle - embroidery floss is woven in and over the individual stitches

6. Bullion knot roses

Bullion stitch knots worked around a point to form a rose with a 3-d effect

For the bullion knot roses a small french knot is made first and then the bullion knots are made around the french knot. Checkout the post on Bullion stitch embroidery for more details.

bullion stitch

Use milliner needles with the eye the same size as the shank for making the bullion stitches.
First, as usual, put the needle in and out of fabric, with tip and eye showing.
Wrap as many times around the needle as possible with enough room at the top to get a hold of the needle.
When you have completed all the wraps, pull the needle through.
Smooth the bullion by rubbing the wraps between thumb and forefinger;  tie off. Make 2-3 similar stitches around the french knot slightly overlapping the previous one.

Make the small leaves by making straight stitches like a V in the bottom end of the flower. 

7. French knot roses

Roses embroidered with french knots inside

French knot by themselves look like a beautiful rose, but they are very small. When you make a number of them together they can take on the look of a rose.

8. Gold work roses

Gold embroidery rose

You can make these roses with a loop stitch made in a circle shape . Checkout the post on zardosi embroidery work tutorial for more details.

make loop like stitched with metallic thread - zardosi work

loops made with metallic thread

This  rose is made by passing the needle through the bullion metallic thread cut into small pieces and making loops around a center. Checkout the post on metallic thread embroidery for details on sewing with metallic thread

embroidery roses made with metallic embroidery stitches

9. Geometric  rose

A modern rose made with straight stitches and french knots in the middle

This rose is worked by making a center full of french knots and then working straight stitches around the center to look like petals.

10. Needle painting rose

Needle painting - rose

Needle painting uses long and short stitch to fill the inside of the rose design.When different shades are combined the gradation effect of the long and short stitch can make your work look like a painting – though mine is a long way from looking like one. Checkout the post on Needle painting for more on this hand embroidery technique

needle painting

embroidery rose design filled with long and short stitches

This rose embroidery design is filled with long and short stitches – but instead of a single strand, the whole 6 strands of the embroidery threads are used in the needle.

drawing of a rose on the fabric

First, the outline is done with the long and short stitches with a light coloured thread.

Long and short stitches worked with light and dark colored embroidery floss

The inner part is filled with more stitches with a darker shade of the same color.

rose embroidery done with long and short stitches

stem stitches, satin stitches are used to fill the stem and leaves

Another rose design

rose embroidery made on a chequered fabric

fill the design with satin stitches

sew a shift dress

shift dress pattern

shift dress pattern

Finish with an outline stitch between petals to emphasize and delineate them

11. Cross stitch roses

cross stitches made inside a rose drawing with shading

Roses are a favourite in cross stitch embroidery. There are a hundred ways you can make embroidered roses with chain stitch. Checkout this post on making cross stitch patterns from photos/ pictures as well as a beginner’s guide to cross stitch.

12. Rosette chain stitch Rose

rosette chain stitch worked to look like roses

This is a textured rose made with simple rosette chain stitches.Checkout the rosette chain stitch tutorial post for more details.

13. Cast-on stitch rose

cast on stitches used to fill the rose

Learn how to make this rose in this post on working the cast-on stitch here.

In a history book I read about a war named after a Rose. I donot know why and wonder at this unless they fought for a rose. Anyways I know that Rose is the official flower of the month of June. I know someone born in June who needs a rose embroidered something urgently – me myself.

If you donot know how to draw a rose freehand checkout the picture below for some very simple steps. Here are 6 easy ways to draw and paint a rose.

Drawing of a rose

Related posts: Make beautiful felt roses: 4 ways 

diy roses made with felt

15 different ways to stitch leaves for your flower designs 

leaf embroidery


easy to make embroidery motifs

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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.

12 thoughts on “Rose Embroidery – 12 ways to make embroidered roses easily”

  1. Sally
    Thinking I was ready, 1,2,3 start, I read your article about embroidery. My challenge is a quilt with all 50 States: Birds and Flowers. This was left to me by my Mother. I have know idea it is or where she bought it. My plan is to make two quilts, one for each daughter and one for our son. Right now, I feel as though I’m in Graduate school researching. Your information, I found accidentally by looking up embroidery thread. I have bookmarked pages of importance to my learning about embroidery. My Mother made this art look so easy. Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge of embroidery.

    • Hi Sally
      Embroidery is easy when it is interesting to you – if you have no interest, then it is hard. : ) I really commend your desire to pass on your mothers work to your kids – hope you will also find it easy and do a very good job.

  2. Hi. Your instructions for the spider web rose are incorrect. It says to make 8 spokes as in the photo but there are actually 9. You need an odd number of spokes or you end up going under and over in the same places all the time. An odd number makes it vary so where you went under, as you come back around, now you go over. Great list of floral techniques. I’m bookmarking!

    • Hi Allison
      You are right ; I have written 8 spokes though I have the 9 spokes in the picture. thanks for pointing it out – corrected

  3. I can’t see any of the pics, they just load forever, and I’ve tried 3 different browsers so I’m not sure which end the problem is on. Pls help!

    • Hi
      Thanks for pointing it out ; it seems to work on mine ; let me check in another computer and see
      thanks again

  4. Hello, I’m from England and I love your posts. I think the ‘rose war’ you remember is the Wars of the Roses, fought for the throne of England between the Houses of York and Lancaster in the 1400s. They were so called because the Lancastrians’ emblem was a red rose and the Yorkists’ was a white one. This marathon series of civil wars started in 1455 and went on for 32 years, ending when the Lancastrian Henry Tudor defeated the reigning Yorkist king, Richard III, and became King Henry VII.

    I hope I’m not boring you, but I live in an ancient town which still shows some of the scars from these wars in its buildings. We still have a well-preserved green space in the town centre where a church was destroyed by the Lancastrians – and has never been rebuilt!

    • You are not boring me at all – The detail you share is fascinating . Sorry for writing so flippantly about something so close to your heart & Thanks for reading

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