Satin stitch - just the sound of the word makes us think of something soft and smooth. Almost silky, it is a luxurious sounding name. Satin stitch is exactly like the sound of satin. It looks and feels soft and silky and it can transform a simple design into something luxurious as it fills in the spaces on any embroidery design.
The beauty of satin stitch is just how simple it is. It is sewn in simple straight stitches making it a fast and easy option to fill spaces and shapes.
This stitch is best on small to medium shapes as larger shapes result in long threads that can catch and pull. You can break larger areas into smaller areas of satin stitch to prevent pulled threads.
In this tutorial, I have outlined the hearts with a backstitch at the end. You can also sew the outline first and then satin stitch inside it. An outline is just optional and you can sew it whenever it is easiest for you.
Satin stitch is best sewn in an embroidery hoop to prevent you pulling the stitches too tight and causing puckering. For these samples, I used a 6 strand embroidery floss but finer work can be done with fewer strands.
If you are new to embroidery, read my article on how to embroider to learn about basic supplies and techniques.
How to do Satin Stitch
Step 1 - Mark Design
Draw your design using something that will not show or bleed into your finished design. Graphite pencil can be used if you are going to sew over the edges. Otherwise use chalk or removable fabric pens.
Step 2 - Starting Stitch
Begin with your needle and thread coming up to the right side of the fabric at a spot on the edge of the design at (1).
For best results, work from the middle of the design towards the outer edges. It is easier to control the format of the stitches and the finished effect in this way.
A leaf satin stitch, for example, would start in the middle and work out to the tip and then start again from the middle to the other end of the leaf.
Step 3 - First Stitch
Re-insert your needle directly across the pattern to the opposite side at (2).
Return to the right side of the fabric by inserting your needle from underneath, next to the first stitch at (3).
This is how the satin stitch looks when the needle is pulled through.
Step 4 - Repeat
This is the pattern to follow as you fill in the area with satin stitch. Try and get the stitches close together with minimal gaps.
Satin Stitch - Four Simple Steps
- Up from the back to start
- Down on the opposite side to make a stitch
- Up from the underside coming up next to the original starting point
- Back down again making another stitch and ready to continue in this fashion
Satin Stitch Variations
There are numerous variations of satin stitch if you want to explore its possibilities further.
Try long and short satin stitch or padded satin stitch and shadowed satin stitch. The stitch stays the same, but slightly different effects can be used to accentuate this lovely soft, smooth creative stitch – aptly named - satin stitch.
MORE EMBROIDERY ARTICLES
- Blanket Stitch
- Buttonhole Stitch
- Chain Stitch
- Chevron Stitch
- Couching Stitch
- Cross Stitch
- Double Herringbone Stitch
- How to Embroider
- Faggoting Embroidery
- Feather Stitch
- Fern Stitch
- Fishbone Stitch
- Fly Stitch
- French Knots
- Hand Embroidery Stitches
- Herringbone Stitch
- Lazy Daisy
- Running Stitch
- Sashiko Embroidery
- Satin Stitch
- Seed Stitch Embroidery (Rice Stitch)
- Stem Stitch
- Straight Stitch
- Web Stitch | Embroidery Tutorial
- Whip Stitch