Content guidance

Equipment requiring safe usage.

Adult supervision recommended.


Lesson video

In progress...


Hello, and welcome to what is our fourth lesson in the design technology, textiles unit of work.

My name is Mr. Wicken, and it's great to see you here again today in our lesson.

In today's lesson, we're going to look into what the different types of stitches that we can use in our textiles base work are and how we actually create those stitches.

We're going to look at three different types of stitches in today's lesson, and we'll have more on that as we go through, but let's go and have a look at the learning objectives for today's lesson.

As always, before we go into the learning objectives, if you haven't yet got the intro quiz completed.

If you could pause the video here now and get that done for me, that'd be great.

All right.

Let's have a look at the first learning objective for today and that is we're going to look into what a running stitch actually is and how we create a running stitch in a piece of fabric.

Then we're going to look at what a back stitch is in the same way.

And actually you're going to then going to have a go at creating it yourselves.

Then the last sort of steps that we're going to look at in today's lesson is what is a cross stitch.

And same with the other two, you're going to have a go at creating a cross-stitch yourself.

And as always, we're going to finish off the lesson with the exit quiz, just to conclude all the fantastic learning you will have done in today's lesson.

Now, before we get into that, it's really important we then discuss the equipment for today's lesson because there are a couple of things that we need to be aware of, right? So before we go any further the equipment that I am asking you to use today, you need to make sure that when you're using it you have the supervision of your parent or carer so that if anything does happen then they're around just to help and support you if needed.

So the equipment we're going to need is a pair of scissors, preferably fabric scissors if you've got that, which would be brilliant but if you haven't, it doesn't matter.

A pair of scissors will do fine.

You're going to need a needle and a piece of thread or roll of thread, is up to you.

If you've got a roll that's even better just because obviously we might be using quite a bit.

And you're going to need some fabric but if you don't have access to some fabric in today's lesson, that's all right, you could use pieces of paper or indeed card, preferably thin pieces of card but paper will do just as well.

So if you haven't got those bits of equipment, pause the video here now and go and get them for me.

Okay, now we've got the equipment.

Let's have a look at today's key words.

So, we've got two key words that we need to be aware of.

So let's start with the first one which is thread.

So I'm going to say it and you're going to repeat it.

So, thread.




Well done.

Now a thread is a long, thin strand of cotton, nylon or other fibres, depending on what you're using.

And obviously we've looked into natural and synthetic fibres before, that you use to actually sew together pieces of fabric.

Now is often used as well in a spool or a bobbing, which can be used for different types of machinery within textile, which is great.

But a thread effectively is what stitches together the actual pieces of fabric to create a textile based product.

And that leads us nicely onto the next key word, which is stitch.

So let's say that together.

I'll say and you'll repeat it.





Really well done.

Now, a stitch is a single pass or movement from the needle with the thread and it's sewn along or knitted, it can be knitted as well, along the fabric.

So the stint is actually what we create using the needle in the thread.

And we can create different types of stitches.

And that's what we're going to look into in today's lesson.

We're going to look at three different types of stitches, running, back, and cross.

Now there are more, but we're just going to look at those three stitches because they're quite quintessential basic stitches which is perfect for us to get started in this area.

So let's go and have a look at the first learning objective for today's lesson.

So, our first area of learning in today's lesson is what is a running stitch.

So we need to understand, before we go in and look into actually what are running a stitch is, what a stitch genuinely is within a textile based product.

A stitch is really important and it, without a stitch you are unable to hold two pieces of fabric together.

It actually builds and holds those products, those textile based products together to actually create the product that you are intending to sell to your given audience.

Stitching does require skill.

And you are going to look into that in today's lesson with a skill and the understanding behind creating those stitches.

But it also requires care and dedication to be able to create the perfect stitch to be successful in what you are intending to use it for.

When you are stitching the fabric together, all right? You have to make sure that you are using that skill and you are taking your time and care to ensure that what you are creating in that stitch is to a good quality.

So before we go any further, I want you to have a look at what you're wearing currently.

And I want you to try and find where there are stitches that are holding your piece of clothing together.

So if I take my shirt, for example, you can see actually, around this area here by the actual cuff there is some stitching around by the button.

There's some stitching going down the actual length of the sleeve.

And these are key areas that are holding my shirt together.

And what I want you to do is have a look at your piece of clothing and actually find stitches.

So pause the video, go and find the stitches over the piece of clothing you're wearing currently and then come back and we'll carry on.

Okay, now you've had a look, did you find the stitching? Great.

And you can see that actually it's all over your pieces of clothing, because without that stitch the fabric wouldn't be held together and it wouldn't create the garment that you're wearing.

And that's the same with any textile based product that without those stitching they would not hold the fabric together.

Now a running stitch is what we're going to look into first.

A running stitch is a hand stitching technique, it is the bread and butter.

It is the basic stitch that we all really need to know and understand to be able to then build on that to do other type of stitching techniques.

It is used quite widely within the textile based industry.

And it is one that is perfect usually for a variety of different needs and wants within the textile based product manufacture.

A running stitch is made by taking a needle and a thread and you move up and down along the actual seam line that you are creating when you're stitching two pieces of fabric together.

You try and make sure that as you're stitching up and down you're keeping the distance between the stitches, a regular consistent size.

That's important because A, it looks visually nicer to the person viewing that stitch.

But also it does make sure that it's a good strong quality stitch that we're creating.

So let's go and have a look at how we create our running stitch.

Before we go off and actually start doing the practise stitch, I just want to talk about a couple of things.

First of all, I've got my piece of fabric to hand.

Remember, you can use any piece of fabric that you've got at home.

You might have some fabric available to use but if you don't maybe use a old tea towel or a T-shirt or something, whatever you can use to actually do the practise of stitching for this lesson.

It's entirely up to you what you want to use.

I've got my fabric inside an embroidery hoop just because I find it's going to help me when I'm demonstrating this to you today, actually to do the stitching.

If you haven't got access to one of those, does matter, you can still do what I'm showing you, just obviously without the embroidery hoop.

Along with that we're obviously now going to need our needle.

We're going to need our reel of thread and we're also going to need some fabric scissors.

Now again, I said if you've got fabric scissors, brilliant because that's what's going to help with cutting the thread off the reel.

But if you've got normal scissors, they should work.

They might not be as clean cut as a fabric scissors.

So what you're going to do is you're going to take your fabric scissors, and you're going to take the thread itself and you're going to take some thread off of the reel, like so, and then the fabric scissors you're going to cut that off.

Now I've got one ready to hand here.

I've got a nice precut thread.

And what I'm going to do is I'm going to take my needle and I'm going to thread the needle at the top where the hole is with the red piece of thread.

Now, I like to just lick the end of mine and I'm going to do.

It's a bit fiddly, okay? And it's very, it's usually advised that you just try and keep it close yourself so you've got a good view of it.

My eyesight is going and probably your eyesight is a decile better than mine, but once you get it through the eye of the needle at the top, that's what you're looking for, okay? So we want to keep that like so, and we don't want to lose it.

So be careful as you're doing it.

The other thing I want you to do is, at the opposite end of the thread I want you to tie a knot.

Now I'm going to show you how to tie the knot just so that you are aware, okay? So I'm going to take the thread, there's the end of it.

I'm going to start by overlapping it.

If I just pull that to one side so you can see I've just started by overlapping the thread.

Then what I'm going to do, I'm going to take this end and I'm going to put it through here.

This hoop that I've created, I'm going to pull it through.

So let me just pick it up, pull it through like so, all right? So then I've created that.

Okay, you can see I've pulled it through and then all I'm going to do is then take that hoop out of there.

Just pull it tight, tighter and tighter and tighter.

And then I've created a little knot just in the end of the string.

And what that's going to do is help stop the thread being pulled through the fabric, okay? So now we've got that all set up.

We're going to take our knitting thread and we're going to start to stitch, okay? So, what I'm just going to do, I've drawn a pencil line on the fabric just to help guide me as I'm doing this.

And I would recommend that you do this as well.

You wouldn't do this normally when you are stitching fabric together but for this today, because we're practising , it's just going to help guide you with the needle.

So I'm going to start by taking it out, please, please, please, because we are now using needles it's very sharp, be careful as we're doing this, right? I don't want you to hurt yourself.

We've discussed this in the start of our lesson about having supervision and this is where we're going to need that supervision.

So to start with, I'm going to begin here.

So we're going to stitch from right to left, okay? If you're left-handed you can do it left to right.

It's up to you.

But I'm right-handed so I'm going to start on the right.

So what I'm going to do is I'm going to find the end of that pencil line with my needle, okay? I'm pushing the needle through, as you can see.

And then what what I'm going to do is I'm going to pull and I'm going to pull the thread through like so, and then it's not going to go any further.

Can you see how it's picking up the fabric? And the reason why it's doing that is because that knot that we've tied in is stopping the thread coming all the way through.

And that's perfect.

That's what we want, okay? What I'm now going to do is I'm going to take my needle here and I'm going to come along this line so far about there and then I'm going to push it back through.

So it's now going through the back of the fabric and I'm going to keep pulling.

And what's going to happen is now you can see it's created a little red line along my pencil line.

What I want to do is I want to then bring that needle that's at the back of my fabric, I want to bring it back through this side but I want to try and keep the size of the gap roughly the same size as that original stitch.

So I keep pulling, keep pulling, and then it's not going to go any further.

So can you see what I've done is I've done the top stitch here, I've done taken it round the back, okay? And I've brought it, the needle, back through and the gap between where the threads come through and where it finished on this side is roughly about the same size.

And then again, I'm going to go back down through this side keeping it the same rough size as what we've had already.

And we're going to go, keep pulling, keep pulling, keep pulling, keep pulling, keep pulling, there we go.

And that's what I'm going to do.

I'm going to keep going along this pencil line until the end, keeping the stitch evenly spaced, consistent all the way along.

Okay, so here we go.

I've now created my running stitch along that pencil line, I've tried to keep it as even as I can going along.

I've rushed mine.

I know you'll do even better than what I've done and keep it even more consistent.

But you can see that it's gone up and down, up and down, in and out, okay? Created that nice running stitch going along that pencil line.

And that's what you now need to go and have a go at creating yourselves.

So you're going to pause the video here now, you're going to go and get your piece of fabric or paper.

If you haven't got fabric available remember you can use paper just to practise it on.

That's perfectly fine.

And you're going to create a running stitch along your piece of fabric.

Now remember to follow what I've shown you in the demonstration about going up and down, keep it nice and even as you go along that line.

Try and keep the spacing as even as you can.

But what I want you to do is whilst I've done one on my example, I'd like you to have a go at one line of a running stitch and then I'd like to do it two more times to give you some really good practise as to creating this running stitch.

If you find that after the three different lines of running stitch you've done, you actually feel you need a little bit more practise, then carry on.

There's nothing wrong with that.

I'm not saying that three is where you have to stop.

If you feel that you need a little bit more practise, keep going.

That's only going to make you a much better person when it comes to creating these stitches.

So pause the video, get stitching, have fun.

I'll see you in a little while.

Welcome back, and I hope you gone really well with creating your running stitches and you've now gotten a good understanding of actually how we create a running stitch in a piece of fabric using a thread and a needle.

Now we're going to move on to our second learning objective for today's lesson and our second stitch technique which is what is actually a back stitch.

Now a back stitch is again, another type of hand stitching technique, like a running stitch but it takes it a little bit further and it's a little bit more technical than a running stitch.

So as I've said before, the running stitch is sort of the bread and butter.

That basic hand stitch that once we know that and we've mastered it, actually the other types of hand stitching we can start to use and build up our skills, our repertoire of skills, because actually that running stitch is a good baseline which we can then build on from there.

And this is a perfect example of a back stitch.

The back stitch itself is actually, as a type of hand stitching technique, far stronger as a stitch holding fabric together than just a running stitch on its own.

So this is why we would, we might be using a back stitch for our project that we're going to do in this unit of work.

The idea is that you go forwards like with a running stitch but actually you go back on yourselves at certain points to create a far stronger stitch that is holding the fabric together.

There are no spaces in a back stitch.

Whereas with the running stitch we had that nice, consistent sort of even gap as we went along between the thread then the gap, the thread then the gap, the thread then the gap.

Well actually with a back stitch it's just a continuous thread going all the way along for this stitch, holding those two bits of fabric together.

So let's go and have a look at how we create a back stitch now.

So I've got my fabric again to demonstrate to you how we're going to create that back stitch.

I've got my running stitch from our last practical that we were just doing at the top.

You might use the same piece of fabric or you might use a new piece of fabric for what we're going to do now is entirely up to you.

Or you might be using paper.

Again, it doesn't matter whether you're using paper or the fabric to do these practise stitching it.

It's going to all work in our favour because you're going to get that understanding of how we stitch together.

So with this now, I've got my needle already set up so I have threaded the needle, okay? So that is all good to go.

I've put the knot at the end of the thread as well so that it's not going to pull through.

I've got my pencil line on the fabric.

Again, it's up to you wherever you want to use a pencil line just to help guide you like we were doing with the running stitch.

I've got mine here just to help me.

It might be advised that you do the same.

We're going to start very, very, very similar to a running stitch.

And you'll see that actually, by starting with this it's helping us with this back stitch.

And then there are a few slight differences between our running stitch and our back stitch as we go through this demo.

So, I'm going to take my needle, like before I'm going to pop the needle through the end of my pencil line here like so, and I'll pull it through making sure I'm not losing the thread.

And then there we go, again, the, it's caught the knot.

So it's going to stop it putting it all the way through, which is great.

I'm going to do exactly the same as we did with the running stitch.

So I'm going to go along that line, just a small distance from where I've pulled the needle through.

I'm going to push it back through the fabric.

I'm going to pull it so it goes nice and tight along that line.

Hey presto, we've got the start of our back stitch, which again is very similar to our running stitch.

And again, like with our running stitch I'm going to bring the needle back through the front here.

So I've got the needle and the thread here with me at the front, but this is where it's different.

With a running stitch I would just carry on going along in and out, in and out, as we've done earlier.

But this time I'm going back on myself and hence the reason for the name back stitch.

Because what I'm going to do here is I'm actually going to go back just by where I threaded the needle through the fabric here.

I'm going to push the needle back through like so, pulling it, nice and tight.

And this is where we get that name back stitch, because I've gone back slightly to create that continuous line.

Can you see how we're getting a continuous line of the thread? Now what I'm going to do is with my needle I'm going to bring, again, the same sort of equal distance as we were doing before with the running stitch.

and we're doing here with the back stitch.

I'm going to bring it back forward through the fabric, pull it tight.

And then again, I'm going to go back to where I was a moment ago and I'm going to find a point where I'm going to push the needle through, pull it tight like so, and then I'm creating this nice continuous line which will eventually go all the way along this pencil line to the end.

And this is where we get that nice, strong continuous thread, which is different, as you can see, to the running stitch.

Whereas the running stitch has the gaps in between the back stitch doesn't.

So we're going to carry on going all the way along until we get to the end of that pencil line to see what it looks like.

And there we go.

I've now created my back stitch going along that pencil line, that nice continuous thread going all the way along.

And as you can see, there are no gaps in between the thread as we've moved along that pencil line.

Which is different from the running stitch where it has the gaps.

So this is why this stitch is called a back stitch because we're going back on ourselves at different points but also why it is a stronger stitch because it's a much tighter and closer stitch together which is going to make that thread far stronger when holding the fabric together.

So, now we've gone through the demonstration of how to create the back stitch and we've seen what the end article should look like.

You're going to do exactly the same as you did with the running stitch.

I'd like you to use a piece of fabric or piece of paper and I'd like you to go and practise actually building that running stitch using the thread and a needle.

Make sure that when you're doing it, you're keeping it nice and tight.

Those are back stitches so it's a good, strong thread that you're creating.

And like before, I'd like to have a go at it once then I'd like you to have another go at it a second time and then finish off with a third run as a back stitch.

So we've got good amount of practise.

Like with the running stage, if you find that actually you could do with maybe practising a little bit more because it gets a little bit more tricky then that's fine.

Keep practising.

There's nothing wrong with that.

You practise as much or as little as you need to, but I want it to be at least three different times having a go with the back stitch.

So pause the video here, go and get yourself ready, have fun.

I'll see you in a little while.

Welcome back.

And I hope you got on really well with creating your back stitches and that you've been able to practise how to create the different types of stitch using some pieces of fabric or a piece of paper.

Now I'm going to move on to our third type of stitch which is also our last learning objective for today's lesson which is, what is a cross-stitch? A cross stitch is slightly different to what we've looked at before.

Firstly, the other two that we've looked at, the running stitch and the back stitch, they are constructional hand stitching, okay? So you use them to construct different garments, textile based products.

A cross stitch is slightly different.

It's more a decorative hand stitch.

So you would use this to actually decorate a textile based product to maybe show off what you're creating and actually look at that stitch as a decorative piece of that product.

Now, the technique gets its name, cross stitch, from what it creates, which are a series of little Xs, little crosses, X marks the spot, okay? Going along the seam where the fabric are being fixed together.

Actually, the cross stitch itself is probably one of the oldest stitching techniques of any type of stitching that's available.

It's been around for a very, very long time.

But it just shows you that because it's been used for such a long time it's actually a very good type of stitch but more a decorative one as opposed to a construction based one.

The idea there is we're going to have two sort of parallel lines running along the fabric which is going to help us guide our needle to create those Xs going along in a nice pattern.

So let's go and have a look at how we create the cross stitch.

So I've got my piece of fabric here again with me.

As you know, we've done the running stitch, we've done the back stitch, and we're now moving on to the cross stage.

So you might want to use a third piece of fabric at hand or some piece of paper or you might be using the same piece of fabric that you've been using for your running or back stitch.

Again, it's fine.

Whatever you've got available, keep using it.

Now what I've done this time is where before we've had just the pencil lines just to help guide us.

If you wanted to use it, you didn't have to, but again, it might be usable to actually have those lines there just to help you.

What we're going to have this time is two parallel lines.

So we've got two lines that are directly opposite each other going along the fabric as you can see there.

And the reason why is because that's going to help us build up our crosses.

You can, if you want to, with a pencil, you can actually go further by putting little dots that are evenly spaced along the lines to help you build the Xs.

And you do exactly the same at the bottom just to help build.

If you want that, go for it.

I haven't got it with mine because I don't want to give me too much help.

I want to try and do some stuff independently as we're building this at the same time.

So I've got my needle all set up as we have done before.

And we're going to start as we have done previously, which is we're going to come to the back of the fabric, like so, and we're going to push the needle through, hey presto, and we're going to keep pulling and I've got the knot already done and I'm going to pull it until, there we go.

Now the knot is tugging on the fabric, which is perfect.

That means I've gone far enough.

Now what I'm going to do is from here I'm going to go diagonally down to this bottom line, like so, but what I'm also going to do is when I'm pushing it through I'm actually going to hook it back on itself so that I'm ready to do the next part of the cross.

So if I show you what I mean by that is I'm going to just rotate this round just to make it a little bit easier for me.

I'm going to push it down, like so, but at the same time I'm going to hook the needle back out like this.

Can you see how I've pushed the needle through this way but I've then hooked it back out of this side which is roughly in line with where I started my cross stitch.

And I'm going to push that forward.

I'm going to put it through like so, hang on, let me just get it.

Oh, it's a bit, oh, silly me.

I've poked it into the fabric, but we will make mistakes, don't we? There we are.

Right, there.

Okay, and we're going to keep putting it through like so until it gets nice and tight, let me get my needle.

There we go.


Pulling, pulling, pulling, pulling, pulling, pulling, pulling, pulling, pulling, pulling, pulling.

Oh, I've got the thread hooked into there.

That's just because I'm rushing this.

You would take more time.

There we go.

So you can easily fix these things.

You can just put it out there.

Right, so can you see now I've got the diagonal line and I've also pinned it back through, roughly in line with where I started.

Now what I'm going to do is I'm going to go back over to this top line, roughly in line with where I pulled it through here for the diagonal and I'm going to push it through my needle, I'm going to push through like so.

And then what I've created is the cross.

And what we would then do is we would carry on building up the crosses all the way along these two parallel lines next to each other to allow there to be this nice decorative stitching technique.

And here we go, this is now our completed cross stitch that it should look like once you've done.

So you can see we've gone along and consistently we've got crosses nicely neatly packed together in between the two parallel lines creating that lovely decorative stitch.

And you can see why this is a decorative stitch as opposed to the other two which are construction because actually this is something that you like to look at.

It does look interesting, far more interesting than say just a back stitch or a running stitch.

So that's what we're going to have a go at now, this decorative stitch which is going to be a little bit different to what we've done before but does make a really pretty stitch in the fabric at the end.

So now it's your turn to build your cross stitch in either your piece of fabric or bits of paper, either doesn't matter.

You need to make sure like with the back stitch and the running stitch you take your time and your care with building that type of stitch and that you've got that nice consistent Xs going along the two parallel lines.

Could I also ask that like with the other two stitches you have three attempts at it.

So you've got one go, then a second, and then a third.

And again, like with the others, if you feel that you need to continue practising that, this technique please feel free to do so.

Do as many as you want so that you are confident in yourself at building this type of stitch.

So, pause the video here, go and get building the cross stitch, have fun and I'll see you in a little while.

Welcome back I hope you had lots of fun building your cross stitches and that you've now got a really good understanding of how that is constructed and built as you go along two parallel lines.

And that is it for our lesson today.

Thank you so much for being here.

I hope you've had lots of fun.

We've done a huge amount of learning in today's lesson.

Today we've looked at what actually are running stitches and how we build one of those in some fabric.

We then moved on to actually how to build a back stitch and how that differs from a running stitch and why that's more a stronger type of stitch than a running stitch.

And then finally, we've looked into a decorative type of stitch which is called cross-stitch.

And you've now gone away and had a go at building that as well.

As always I would love to see what you've been creating in our lesson today.

And if you could get your parents or carers permission to get them to take some photos of what you've created in your fabric or piece of paper I'd love for them to share it online using the hashtag learn with Oak.

I look forward to seeing in our next lesson.

Take care.