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Straight stitch

When I sit down to film a tutorial for one of my embroidery kits, I almost always end up starting with a simple straight stitch. That's because straight stitch forms the base for so many other stitches in hand embroidery. For example, back stitch, split back stitch, couching, running, and even woven wheel stitches all depend on the straight stitch.

In this post, I'll take you through the basic straight stitch through photo and written instructions; I've also provided a brief video tutorial at the end of this post, should that be more useful to you.

A photo of a light green embroidery hoop with yellow, pink, and blue lines stitched on top.
Finished straight stitches in "flower" patterns.

Step 1: Gather your supplies.

For this demonstration, I'll be stitching on two layers of cotton fabric, and I'll be using six strands of cotton embroidery floss. (p.s., you can purchase the scissors in these photos in my shop!)

Step 2: Bring your needle through your fabric.

Step 3: Bring your needle back down, any distance you like.

That's it! Those are all the steps!

I continued making straight stitches until I had what looked almost like a very simple flower. You could do something similar to this to practice your stitching, play around with color choices, and even play around with how many strands of floss might work best for you!

Video tutorial for straight stitch

As promised, here's a quick video tutorial for straight stitch!

If you're a total beginner, and this is your first ever experience with hand embroidery: congratulations! You now know how to stitch. You're well on your way to learning all sorts of other techniques, but only if you want to! If all you want to do is straight stitch, that's totally fine, too!


Your new favorite hobby awaits with these beginner-friendly embroidery kits!

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