Star Stitch Embroidery Tutorial

This version of star stitch is only one of the many ways to create an embroidery star. From simple straight stitches arranged in a criss-cross pattern, to complicated star stitches that require math and measurements, the star stitch methods are as varied as their results. For this tutorial, we’re keeping it simple with an easy to learn stitching method that results in a true star shape.


Star Stitch Tutorial ~ WanderingThreadsEmbroidery.comStart by drawing a circle the size you want your finished star. Mark five even dots around the circle. Try to make your dots even, but don't worry if they are a bit off. I actually prefer my embroidered stars to be a tiny bit off center because I feel it adds character.

Star Stitch Tutorial ~ WanderingThreadsEmbroidery.com

Bring the thread up at one of the dots. Let's call it point A.

Star Stitch Tutorial ~ WanderingThreadsEmbroidery.com

Skip over point B and bring the needle down at C creating a single straight stitch that crosses the right side of the circle.

Star Stitch Tutorial ~ WanderingThreadsEmbroidery.com

Now, go back to point B and bring the needle up.

Star Stitch Tutorial ~ WanderingThreadsEmbroidery.com

Skip point C and bring the thread down at point D.

Star Stitch Tutorial ~ WanderingThreadsEmbroidery.com

The next stitch will come up at C and go down at E.

Star Stitch Tutorial ~ WanderingThreadsEmbroidery.com

Continue this pattern of bringing the thread up at one point, skipping the point between, and then bringing it down at the next point until a star shape forms.

Star Stitch Embroidery Tutorial

To form the second layer of the star, bring the thread up again at point A. This time come up just a bit to the left of the original stitch.

Star Stitch Tutorial ~ WanderingThreadsEmbroidery.com
Following the same pattern as the first time, skip point B and bring the thread down at point C just to the left of where the star point forms.

Star Stitch Tutorial ~ WanderingThreadsEmbroidery.com

Continue this pattern around the star. Each time you bring the thread up and back down stay on the left side of the point and move down the star points. The second layer will look like this.

Star Stitch Tutorial ~ WanderingThreadsEmbroidery.com

As you stitch around the star and move the thread down the points a tightly woven star begins to form.

Star Stitch Tutorial ~ WanderingThreadsEmbroidery.com
When the thread reaches the center of star, bring it to the back and tie off. You now have a perfect embroidery star!

Star Stitch Tutorial ~ WanderingThreadsEmbroidery.com

Star Stitch Variations

Star stitch can be used to make any size star. A big star will have narrow points like this one.

Star Stitch Tutorial ~ WanderingThreadsEmbroidery.com

While small stars will have shorter points.

Star Stitch Tutorial ~ WanderingThreadsEmbroidery.com

Star Stitch Patterns

A few patterns for putting your new star stitching skills to use!

Alaska State Embroidery Pattern
Alaska Hand Embroidery Pattern
Vintage Trailer Happy Holidays Pattern
Vintage Trailer Happy Holidays Hand Embroidery Pattern

Chain Stitch Tutorial

Chain stitch is perhaps one of the most versatile of all the basic embroidery stitches. As the name implies, each stitch is connected like loops in a chain. It's a great stitch for beginners and a favorite of embroidery veterans. Chain stitch can be used for everything from beautifully textured outlines to a unique way to fill in shapes. There are multiple variations of the chain stitch, but all require mastering the basic stitch first.


Chain Stitch Tutorial ~ Wanderingthreadsembroidery.com

Begin your chain stitch by bringing the thread up at the starting point. Take the needle back through the same hole then down again a short distance away without pulling the thread all the way through. Loop the thread around the bottom of the needle.

Chain Stitch Tutorial ~ Wanderingthreadsembroidery.com
Pull the thread all the way through until a loop forms.

Chain Stitch Tutorial ~ Wanderingthreadsembroidery.com

Put the needle back down in the same hole (inside the loop) and then bring it back up another stitch length away.

Chain Stitch Tutorial ~ Wanderingthreadsembroidery.com

Again, make sure the thread is under the needle before pulling it tight to form that second loop in the chain. Continue this pattern until you've reached the desired length. To finish the stitch bring the thread down at the bottom of the last loop.

Chain Stitch Tutorial ~ Wanderingthreadsembroidery.com

Once you get the hang of it, this is a really simple stitch that can be used in a variety of ways.

Chain Stitch Tutorial ~ Wanderingthreadsembroidery.com

Chain Stitch Variations

The basic stitch can be easily altered to create different looks simply by pulling the thread tighter to make a more compact chain or lengthening the stitches to make a more open chain.

Chain Stitch Tutorial ~ Wanderingthreadsembroidery.com

Chain stitch also makes a great filler stitch. Start by outlining the shape you want to fill. Next, following the outline, create multiple lines of chain stitch inside the shape. Make sure that the lines are close together and no fabric shows between. Keep stitching until the entire shape is full. Using chain stitch as a filler is not only fun, but it creates interesting patterns inside the shape. For example, when filling a circular shape, you will end up with a deeply textured spiral.

Chain Stitch Tutorial ~ Wanderingthreadsembroidery.com

For a simple variation with a thicker, bolder look, check out the tutorial for Heavy Chain Stitch.

Chain Stitch Tutorial

Chain Stitch Patterns

Want to practice your chain stitch? Many of the Wandering Threads Embroidery patterns use chain stitch in a variety of ways. For example, the Georgia Embroidery Pattern prominently features chain stitch to create the Spanish moss draped over a grove of live oak trees.

Georgia Hand Embroidery Pattern
Chain stitch is also the recommended stitch for the inner circle of the sunflowers in the Kansas State Flower Pattern.

Kansas State Flower Hand Embroidery Pattern (Sunflower)
Finally, chain stitch makes an appearance in the Grand Canyon National Park Pattern as the outline stitch for the canoes.

Grand Canyon National Park Hand Embroidery Pattern

To see more patterns with chain stitch be sure to visit our homepage and view all the Wandering Threads Embroidery Patterns. Happy Stitching!

Spider Web Stitch Tutorial

Whether you call it a spider web or a spider wheel, there’s no doubt that this creative stitch is both beautiful and simple to create. I like to use spider web stitch for large circular objects like a moon or sun, but it also makes a great flower, animal eye, or simply an intricate embellishment.


Spider Web Stich Tutorial

Begin the spider web stitch by drawing a circle on your fabric. For your first attempt start small — my circle is roughly the size of a quarter. Mark 5 dots around the perimeter of the circle. Try to space them evenly, but don’t worry if they are not perfect. Bring your thread up in the middle.

Spider Web Stich Tutorial
Make 5 straight stitches from the center out to each of the marked points. You should now have something that looks like a wagon wheel. Bring the needle back out through the middle of the spokes.

Spider Web Stich Tutorial

Now is when the fun starts! Weave your needle and thread under and over the spokes without going through the fabric. Take it slow and make sure you alternate under and over.

Spider Web Stich Tutorial

As you weave the thread around the circle a beautiful web begins to form.

Spider Web Stich Tutorial

Continue weaving the thread over and under the straight stitches. As you work outward be careful not to pull the thread too tight or the web will become distorted. If you need to, place your thumb over the center to keep the thread in place. Depending on the look you want to achieve, you can leave the spokes visible or weave until all the straight stitches are covered.

Spider Web Stich Tutorial

When your web is complete, simply bring the needle down and through the fabric under the very outer edge of the thread and tie off on the back of the fabric.

Spider Web Stich Tutorial

Look at this amazing spider web!

Spider Web Stich Tutorial

Spider Web Stitch Variations

The spider web stitch can be altered to create different looks simply by using more than one color thread. Start with one color, weave over and under until you reach the desired thickness. Then bring the thread down through the fabric, tie it off and start a new color thread. Bring this color up next to where the old went down and continue weaving around the web.
Spider Web Stich Tutorial
Use yellow in the middle and a fun bright color on the outside to create a pretty flower pattern.

Spider Web Stich Tutorial
Or try a dark thread in the middle and a lighter color on the outside.

Spider Web Stich Tutorial

Spider Web Stitch Patterns

A few Wandering Threads patterns for putting your new skills to use:

Spring Wreath Pattern

Spring Wreath Hand Embroidery Pattern

Montana Embroidery Pattern

Montana Hand Embroidery Pattern

Bountiful Cornucopia Pattern

Bountiful Cornucopia Hand Embroidery Pattern

Happy Stitching!

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