...definitely one you need in your hand-sewing arsenal of expertise.
When I first learned how to use a running stitch, I was barely old enough to scrawl my name in cursive. If my memory is correct, I used this stitch to attach a big round circle of fabric to a square, much like attaching a patch. This circle would become the body of a turkey but that's beside the point.
This stitch is incredibly versatile. You can use it to define seams, in place of pins for drafting garments, to attach patches of fabric, and even as a decorative embroidery element.
This isn't the end-all-be-all stitch, but it's definitely one you need in your hand-sewing arsenal of expertise.
Before you begin to sew, you'll need to prepare your fabric. In my experience, this part of the process takes up the majority of the time spent on most projects. Your mileage may vary, especially depending on the difficulty of your project.
Now is the time to cut your pattern (if you're using one) and pin your fabric into place. Take note of where you want your stitch to run.
- Thread your needle and tie a knot at the end—I leave a tail about 1" long.
- Pierce the fabric at the starting point of your desired stitch placement.
I usually begin from the underside of a given project (if there is one) and pierce upwards to begin a new stitch.
- Pull the thread through, it should stop when the knot reaches the fabric.
- Stop pulling at this point. It's possible to pull the knot through which can stretch the fabric, sometimes causing irreversible damage.
- Push the needle downwards through the layers of fabric, pulling the thread taut.
- Carefully pierce the needle upwards into the fabric.
- Alternate piercing the needle through each side being careful to produce an even stitch each time. Be sure not to pull the thread too tightly or your fabric will bunch. Fun point: doing this on purpose is how you make ruffles.
If you want to create a straight line, it can help to mark your fabric before stitching.