Carol's basic embroidery stitches

Basic embroidery stitches are the building blocks of all decorative needlework. Some are easier to work than others, but by following the instructions, step-by-step photos and videos you will soon get the hang of them. 

You can try out the stitches on scrap material, but why not do what children in past generations did and create your very own sampler? This can then live in your needlework basket where you can check it for ideas when working your future projects. Or you could include the date you completed it and frame it to hang on the wall.  

I have grouped the embroidery stitches in the lists below to make it easier  to find what you are looking for, but do check out all the links as you might find just what you need in a different section. For example surface embroidery stitches can be included in a cross stitch piece.

This library contains line stitches (ideal for lettering) and those that are best for filling areas such as for embroidered flowers or leaves for example. 

Basic embroidery stitches for surface work




Double running

Satin stitch kloster blocks - for hardanger

Pattern darning

Pulled work

Needlepoint stitches

Gobelin - and variations

Leaf - and variations 

Rhodes - and variations

Rice Stitch


Tent - continental, half cross and basketweave

Velvet - gives a wonderful furry effect to your needlepoint

Rice stitch sample on canvas

Hardanger stitches


Corded single brussels

Double brussels stitch

Pea Stitch

Woven Picots

If you find a stitch on the site that isn't listed here please let me know and I will direct you to a free blackwork chart to say thank you.

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