Hand Sew a Chain Stitch

  • 01 of 04

    What is a Chain Stitch

    Chain Stitching Example
    Chain Stitching Example. Debbie Colgrove, Licensed to About.com

    A chain stitch is a series of loops that lay on the fabric forming a loose style line. The sample shown in the photo is a close up of part of the leaves and stem sewn on a tee shirt.


    A chain stitch can be sewn with any thread, yarn or ribbon. It could also be sewn on the edge of fused appliqué.


    Continue to 2 of 4 below.
  • 02 of 04

    Start Sewing a Chain Stitch

    Forming the first chain stitch
    Forming the First Chain Stitch. Debbie Colgrove, Licensed to About.com
    • Bring the threaded needle from the back side of the fabric to the front of the fabric.
    • Re-insert the needle into the top side of the fabric where it came out of the fabric, pointing out the back side of the fabric.
    • Bring the needle point back up through the right side of the fabric a short distance from where the needle went into the fabric. The distance is a variable which depends on the look you are trying to create.
    • Wrap the thread around the point of the needle as shown in the photo, so that...MORE the needle will come through a loop of thread.
    • Pull the needle through the fabric and loop, maintaining the thread loop by not pulling the thread overly tight.

    Continue to 3 of 4 below.
  • 03 of 04

    Continuing to Chain Stitch

    Continuing to Chain Stitch
    Continuing to Chain Stitch. Debbie Colgrove, Licensed to About.com
    • To continue chain stitching, insert the needle where it came out of the fabric, pointing down to the wrong side of the fabric.
    • Bring the point of the needle back out of the fabric the same distance you did the first stitch.
    • Loop the thread around the needle point.
    • Pull the needle all the way through the fabric, maintaining the loop by not pulling the thread too tightly.
    • Repeat until you have sewn the desired amount of chain stitches.

    Continue to 4 of 4 below.
  • 04 of 04

    Ending a Chain Stitch

    Ending Chain Stitch
    Ending a Chain Stitch. Debbie Colgrove, Licensed to About.com
    • Insert the point of the needle just on the outside of the thread loop so the thread will cover the end of the loop when it is tightened.
    • Push the needle through to the back side of the fabric.
    • Anchor the thread on the back side of the fabric.