Learn all about what is stitching, stitching crafts what you can create with stitching. Stitching is the basis of all textile arts and crafts and comprises various stitches and techniques.
What is Stitching Definition
Stitching is the art of creating stitches to decorate or join fabric. When used for sewing, it is usually done in a row with a needle and thread, either by hand or by machine. Stitching is used for sewing clothing, home decor, shoes, and many more items.
This term can also apply to knitting and crochet, where rows of stitches are created to form a piece of fabric.
What are the Types of Stitching
Stitching can be used for different purposes. In this article, I will discuss the following stitching types:
- Hand Stitching
- Decorative Embroidery Stitching
- Machine Stitching
What is Stitching by Hand
Hand stitching can be done when you are not able to use a sewing machine and can also be used for decorative purposes. Even today, hand stitching has a place in haute couture and fine sewing.
Until the 19th Century, when the sewing machine was invented, all sewing was done by hand. There is evidence of ancient people sewing furs and skins using bone needles with sinew threads.
Hand sewing needles come with different thicknesses and points to suit different fabrics. Your thread type and color should also match your fabric in order to get the most professional results.
Here are some of the most popular hand stitches and stitching crafts:
- Running Stitch - This simple up-and-down stitch can be used to sew seams, embroider and even gather fabric. It is the easiest and most versatile of all hand stitches.
- Backstitch - Backstitch, as the name suggests, uses a back-and-forth motion to create a strong, durable stitch. It is the strongest hand stitch for seams and hems. Backstitch looks neater on the top of the fabric, so is not suitable for items where both sides will show. This stitch is also useful for outlining in embroidery.
- Blanket Stitch - This hand stitch is used for decorative edges on blankets, embroidery, and applique. It is popular as there is a thread running along the edge, minimizing fraying and creating an attractive border.
What is Stitching for Embroidery
Embroidery stitching is used for decorative purposes rather than for function. It can be used to decorate clothing, home decor, and many other items. Embroidery is usually done using a combination of stitching types. Read more about what is embroidery and how to embroider.
Some of the most common stitching crafts and embroidery stitches for beginners are:
- Chain Stitch Embroidery - Chain stitches can be used for thicker outlines or singularly to create flowers and leaves.
- Fern Stitch - The fern stitch is commonly used for stems and leaves and looks great for decorative borders.
- Cross Stitch - This stitch can be used to create entire pictures and is an artform in itself.
- Buttonhole Stitch - The buttonhole stitch makes beautiful embroidery flowers with its thick edging.
- French Knots - These little knots are used for the center of flowers.
What is Stitching by Machine
Machine stitching is done using the sewing machine, which was invented by French inventor Barthelemy Thimonnier. This led to mass production and considerably sped up the sewing process. Read more about the history of the sewing machine.
The sewing machine will create a row of stitching with interlocking top and bottom threads. The row of stitching produced by a sewing machine is durable, neat, and of course, the fastest method of stitching.
Here are some beginner articles to help you learn machine stitching:
The main 2 sewing machine stitches you will use are the straight stitch and zig-zag stitch.
A straight stitch will be used for sewing seams, hems, and topstitching. The zig-zag stitch is primarily used to finish seams and stop them from fraying and is a necessity for sewing elastic and knit fabrics.
Other machine stitches include:
- Overcast Stitch - Overcast stitching stops the edges from fraying and is a great alternative to a serger.
- Blind Hem Stitch - Invisible wide hems can be created with this stitch.
- Buttonhole Stitches - This is an important sewing machine function as many clothing items need buttonholes. Your machine may do this manually or automatically.
What is Stitching in Knitting
Knitting involves using stitches to create fabric with 2 knitting needles and yarn. Most knitting stitches are a combination of a knit stitch and a purl stitch. Once you know these basic knitting stitches, you will be able to create countless variations and stitch patterns.
Some of the common knitting stitch patterns are:
What is Stitching in Crochet
Crochet is used for creating a fabric with a hook and yarn using combinations of basic crochet stitches. Most other stitches are combinations and variations of these. Unlike knitting, crochet is done with a single hook. It tends to make up fabric much faster, which makes it an attractive craft.
The main crochet stitches and stitching crafts are:
What is Stitching - In Conclusion
Stitching is the art of joining or creating fabric with the use of a needle and thread or yarn. It is an important part of most modern crafts, including sewing, embroidery, crocheting, and knitting.
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