Back Stitch

Back stitch - front and back views

Back stitch is a great stitch for working knitted seams. Seams work out very neat, though it is a little more bulky than some other methods of joining. The above picture shows to the left, the front of the work and to the right, the back of a row of this stitching method.

You can join up fabric with this method too. If you don't happen to have a sewing machine this stitch will make a nice secure lining for your purses.

Back stitch - right and wrong sides

In this picture you will see how neat the seam is on both the right and wrong sides of the work.

Ok - you know I'm going to say it's easy, don't you? Well - it is. It won't be long before your stitches will be as neat as a sewing machine. Well - it might take a bit of practice to get to that stage, but...

Enough chat - let's get down to business. This is how you work back stitch...

  1. Thread needle
  2. Pin, clip together or baste two pieces to be joined right sides together
  3. Start at the right hand end. Weave or thread yarn along 2 - 3 inches from left to right through one layer of fabric to secure end in place. Do not tie a knot.
  4. Push needle through both layers from front to back one whole knit stitch (V shape) in from seam edge.
  5. Move approx. a quarter inch along behind project, then push needle back through both layers to front of work, pulling all yarn/thread through too.
  6. Repeat steps 4 & 5 going over original stitch again to secure end of yarn/thread.
  7. Go back into first hole again. Instead of bringing needle back through the second hole again, move along another stitch length at the back of your work before you bring the needle & yarn back to the front. This time you will have a stitch at the right, then a space, then your yarn.
  8. Go from front to back through the leftmost hole of the last completed stitch. Move along the back of your work 2 stitch lengths, then bring needle back to front of work again.
  9. Repeat last step to end of seam, then work 2 back stitches on top of one another as per start of seam.
  10. Finish by weaving end along top edge of seam 2 - 3 inches as per start of stitching.

Back stitch tutorial

Some pointers to help you...

  • Stitch length should be governed by thickness of fabric
    • Thicker fabric = longer stitches
    • Finer fabric = shorter stitches

  • Try not to split knitted stitches - gives more strength and is neater
  • Follow same stitch line along back and front pieces for even seams
  • Great for joining different color pieces with any color yarn/thread, as seam invisible on right side (see pic)
  • More bulky seam than other methods
  • Very strong
  • Should only be worked with right sides together - not a decorative seam
  • Front of stitch shows even regular stitches end to end

  • Back of stitch shows double length overlapping stitches

Just try it - it's much easier to just do it. Then after some practice, you'll be able to seam perfectly with back stitch too.

Good Luck!

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