How to Back Stitch

By Contributor ; Updated September 15, 2017

How to Back Stitch. Back stitching is one of the easiest embroidery stitches to master. It's one of the first ones children start with. The back stitch creates a straight line of thread, perfect for adding embellishment, points of interests, outlines or doing letters to embroidery.

Start by creating a small waste knot on the inside of your fabric at the point you want to start stitching. A waste knot is a small knot to keep your stitches from pulling through the fabric.

Pull your needle through the fabric so it's on the outside.

Insert your needle two holes away from your starting stitch. It does not matter whether you do it up, down or to either side (though a stitch to the right seems to be easiest to start). You can do one hole, but it's easier to start with two until you become skilled with embroidery.

Tug the thread tight. You don't want your thread to be too loose. But you don't want it to be so tight that it's pulling or puckering your fabric. Over time you will learn the right amount of tension to give your stitches.

Go two holes in whatever direction you want and pull your needle again through the fabric so it's on the outside.

Push your needle back into the fabric, going two holes backwards. You are putting your needle into a hole you've already put your needle through, and you are moving backwards. This is where the name, back stitch, comes from; you are stitching backwards.

Continue stitching the back stitch until you have the line of thread you want.

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