How to do the Basic Blanket Stitch

Blanket Stitch TUTORIAL

What is the blanket stitch?

It is a simple, easy and beautiful stitch.

Blanket stitch embroidery is a versatile hand embroidery stitch that derived its name from the finishing worked around the edges of woolen blankets.  Today, however, various types of blanket stitches are used as outlines and as functional decorative borders.

There are numerous blanket stitch variations - basic blanket stitch, long and short blanket stitch, boxed blanket stitch, double blanket stitch, basic buttonhole stitch, closed buttonhole stitch, knotted blanket stitch and buttonhole filling stitch, to name a few.Basic Blanket Stitch Tutorial - fb

Blanket stitches are basically flat stitches, neither raised nor textured, and can vary in size depending on the design requirement.

In today's blanket stitch tutorial, you will learn how to do the basic blanket stitch used to finish a single raw edge.

If you want to see more embroidery stitch tutorials, you might like our tutorial of hand embroidery stitches page. You'll find over 60 tutorials from beginner level to advanced stitches.  

Learn how to do the blanket stitch by watching this video and keep reading this post for a photo tutorial with step-by-step instructions.

COMPLETE VIDEO TUTORIAL AVAILABLE! The video below is a preview with no audio, to watch the whole video tutorial, click the link How to do the Basic Blanket Stitch to watch in Youtube.

Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate links. We make a small commission on sales through the affiliate links, at no extra cost to you. Thank you in advance for your purchase and your support! Please see our full Affiliate Statement for more information.

When can you use the blanket stitch?

  • Hemming edges of blankets, napkin, pillowcases and tea towels
  • Attach applique designs
  • Crazy patchwork and quilts
  • Finishing non-woven fabrics such as felt
  • Sew felt toys
  • Christmas decoration
  • Embroidery filler stitch

Blanket Stitch Tutorial

What type of thread is used when blanket stitching?

  • Yarn
  • Embroidery Floss
  • Pearl Cotton
  • Many other threads

Basically, the thicker and heavier the fabric you are using, the thicker the thread and the larger the needle you will be using to blanket stitch.

To Practice the Basic Blanket Stitch You Need:

  • Felt or wool fabric
  • Needle
  • Thread
  • Scissor

Blanket Stitch Supplies

Blanket Stitch instructions:

The blanket stitch has a scroll-like base with straight lines extending from it.  The scroll-like base is formed by looping the thread under the point of the needle before the stitch is pulled tight.  

When working blanket stitches be careful to keep stitch height even and to keep the scroll base at an even tension all the way across.


To begin the blanket stitch you must start by anchoring the thread. 

Blanket Stitch EmbroideryThread the needle and knot the end.  With the right side of the fabric facing up, start by bringing the needle up from the back about ¼” from the edge so the knot is hidden on the back.  Pull the thread all the way through.

Blanket Stitch 2 Anchor StitchNext, poke the needle up from the back again through the same hole, forming a vertical bar. 

Blanket Stitch 3 Anchor Stitch

Insert the needle under the anchor stitch at the edge of the fabric.  To do this, insert the needle under the stitch going sideways at the edge of the felt or fabric.  Blanket Stitch 4 Needle Under Stitch


How to do Blanket Stitch

To begin the first blanket stitch, insert the needle from the front to the back about ¼” away from the anchor stitch.  Pull the thread almost all the way through, forming a loop.   Insert the needle through the loop of the threadBlanket Stitch 6 Pull Thread Tight 

and gently pull it tight so the vertical bar is straight up and down.   


Blanket Stitch 7 Next Blanket StitchNow continue with this process for each stitch  - needle down from top to bottom, insert the needle into the loop, and tighten thread - along the length of the fabric or project.


To finish the stitch, check out the video below about ending the blanket stitch.

Blanket Stitch 8 Finished

a few additional helpful blanket stitch tutorials

Blanket Stitch - Corners
Stitching around corners with a blanket stitch is easy.

Blanket Stitch - How To End
Learn how to secure the thread when stitching the blanket stitch with one layer or two layers of fabric.

Blanket Stitch - Changing Thread
The blanket stitch used lots of thread so you will be changing the thread quite often.  Here is a tutorial to show you how.

Blanket Stitch - Joining Pieces
How to sew two pieces together using the blanket stitch.  It's a way of joining felt toys, Christmas ornaments, etc. 

Blanket Stitch - Hemming
Use the blanket stitch to finish the edge of blankets, napkins, pillowcases and tea towels. 

Blanket Stitch - Finished Folded Edge
Learn how to join pieces of felt but not going all the way around.

Blanket Stitch - Applique
The blanket stitch is a common way to attach a shape to a background fabric.

Blanket Stitch 9 Finished Vertical

 Blanket stitch tips

  • Blanket Stitch can be sewed from left to right or right to left. 
  • Although this tutorial showed sewing the blanket stitch by inserting the needle from the front (top) of the fabric to back; the stitch can also be done from back to front.  Always do it in the same direction.
  • If you are making blanket stitches along an edge, make sure the tip of the needle extends beyond the edge of the fabric.
  • For an even line of stitching keep the height of the stitches even throughout.

We hope you enjoyed this tutorial on how to sew the blanket stitch.  Please contact us if you have any questions.

Happy Stitching!
Annette & Chris


If you have any questions about this project, contact us through the YouTube Video comments or our Contact Us page. We respond to questions in e-mails and YouTube comments regularly.

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