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The Embroidery Stitch Bible


Product Description
Product Details

Table of Contents

Stitch selector
Embroidery essentials
The stitch collection
Stitches for fabric
Line stitches
Chain stitches
Blanket stitches
Crossed stitches
Feather stitches
Satin stitches
Couching stitches
Laid filling stitches
Detached stitches
Raised stitches
Woven stitches
Insertion stitches
Smoking stitches
Drawn thread stitches
Pulled stitches
Stitches for trimmings
Stitches for canvas
Diagonal stitches
Straight stitches
Crossing stitches
Composite stitches
Loop and pile stitches
Working practice
Counted thread techniques
Freestyle embroidery techniques
Canvaswork techniques
Finishing touches
Glossary, index and credits

About the Author

Betty Barnden is a freelance needlecraft designer who studied furniture design at the Royal College of Art (where she made her first tubular knitted chairs). Betty has designed knitting patterns for companies such as Sirdar, Patons, Jaeger and King Cole. Her knitwear, embroidery and crochet designs have appeared in many magazines over the years, and she has also designed embroidery projects and kits. Betty regularly contributes to Sewing World magazine.


A beautiful and comprehensive book with great illustrations and explanations. What more could you need? Excellent!

-- Nia Kirwin * Customer review *

Comprehensive directory of stitches with clear photographic reference and easy-to-follow diagrams. 200 embroidery stitches in all for cross or chain stitch, couching, canvas work, laid work, drawn thread work and decorative stitches. They are arranged according to use. This book should be on every embroiderer's bookshelf. It is particularly useful to beginners or those wishing to enlarge their knowledge of stitches and expand their embroidery work. There is a stitch selector and embroidery essentials. Alternative names for the stitch are given where known as well as usage and notes. The front cover says 'pages lay flat for ease of working' - this is incorrect - the pages do not lay flat. This book has been previously published and is an updated edition.

* Karen Platt *

Expand your enjoyment of embroidery by learning over 200 stitches. Whatever your preferred style or fabric there is a stitch for it and this larger format reissue of the 2003 original is an essential resource for all levels of embroiderer.

Although a total beginner might be daunted by the sheer number of stitches, they could learn all the basics (and more) from this useful book. As well as the stitches there are sections on all the essential topics from what you need to start through to choosing fabrics, working from charts, using a hoop and finishing off. Turn to the back for a short section looking at various types of embroidery, both freestyle and canvas. Each short description contains photographs and diagrams to whet the appetite, plus lists of stitches associated with the style and a brief history. The bulk of the book is given to the stitches themselves, which are divided into two sections (fabric and canvas) and helpfully showcased at the front in a stitch selector. The stitches are grouped in families eg line, chain, blanket, smocking, loops, pulled etc which makes searching for a stitch suitable for a particular effect or style easier. Each stitch is shown photographed, and then how to work it is shown in one or more colored diagrams. These are very clear because they are drawn with the thread a contrasting color to the background, which also contrasts with the white page. They are also large enough to be easily seen, and backed up with written instructions. At the base of the page the stitch's uses are given, plus any notes. There is an index at the back, and a page showing more embroidery books by Search Press so you can take your knowledge further. There are no patterns or projects but this is not that type of book; instead this is one you will never finish working through which is suitable for every level of embroiderer. Highly recommended.

* myshelf.com *

Probably the most comprehensive embroidery book I've seen. Really well illustrated, each stitch has photos as well as diagrams, which I find very helpful. Also shows finishing techniques and a description of various embroidery styles. If you only buy one book on embroidery, this should be it!

-- Linda Jesuadian * Customer review *

This is a fab book. I can't put it down! As a beginner to embroidery, and student at a creative textile class, this is invaluable. All types of embroidery is covered and when you find the areas you are really interested in, the instruction is clear, detailed and easy to follow, not just a brief overview. The photographs are inspiring and tempting to try. Looking forward to a 2018 full of new stitching ideas!

-- Jenny Pritchard * Customer review *

What a beautiful, colourful book. It shows the stitches in an easy to follow format and is a great addition to any embroiders collection. The book covers different aspects of work including canvas,cross stitching and even shows you how to complete projects. I am very pleased with this book and sure it will be well used.

-- Julie Leivers * Customer review *

Lovely book. Clear photos, good charts and written instructions for each stitch so whichever method you prefer, you'll have no problem replicating the examples.
Well organised into different types of stitches - canvas work, fabric embroidery etc.
Makes me feel much more confident about picking up my needle again after many years.

-- Nicky Prys-Jones * Customer review *

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