How to hand embroider Sailors Edge Stitch

How to hand embroider Sailors Edge Stitch

Sailors Edge stitch and Sailors Stitch are similar. I think Sailors Edge Stitch is a variety of Sailors stitch as the main hand motions required to make the stitch are the same.  They are a good example of  how if you change one hand movement in the process it can totally change the look and usage of a stitch. I found this version in The Batsford Encyclopedia of Embroidery Stitches by Ann Butler.


How to work Sailors Edge Stitch

Work is stitch down a vertical line from top to bottom.

sailors edge stitch how to illustration

Have your needle emerge at the top-of-the-line. Move it down the line and take a small bite of the fabric as illustrated.

sailors edge stitch how to illustrationWith your needle pointing left keep the thread under the needle tip pull the needle through so you have a small buttonhole stitch.

sailors edge stitch how to illustrationInsert your needle at the base of the buttonhole stitch with the needle tip emerging at the other side of the buttonhole as illustrated. Wrap your thread under the needle as you would a chain stitch and pull the needle through.

sailors edge stitch how to illustrationContinue down the line in this manner.

As you work hold each loop on to the fabric with your left thumb (if you are right handed)  until the little chain stitch anchors it.

sailors edge stitch how to illustrationAs you can see it is quite easy to work and as a result it is a quick edging stitch. If you vary the tension of the thread between each buttonhole you will produce a looped edge.

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  1. Hello, and thank you for this sweet sea wave stitch.

    I needed one more motif to go with a collection of Greek themed / sea faring stitches to add to the collars on a few packs of newborn onesies for my new grandson to be born in May.

    His father’s family are Greek and I’m hoping it will be a fun blessing.

    Janita Kay

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