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How to Hand Sew a Backstitch for Strong Durable Hand Sewing

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Getting Started
Anchor the Knot

Anchor the Knot

Debbie Colgrove, Licensed to About.com
A back stitch is sewn when the stitches will not be seen on the right side of a garment or project. It is an excellent hand stitch to sew a seam because it is one of the strongest and redundant stitch making it very reliable. A back stitch is a strong stitch to join two pieces of fabric.

Note:The samples shown are sewn with contrasting thread for visibility, you would normally sew with a thread color that matches the fabric color as closely as possible.

  • Thread a needle a piece of thread that is no longer than a yard long. Longer pieces of thread tend to get tangled and knot as you sew, so as tempting as it may be to start with a long piece of thread sot hat you won't have to stop and re-thread the needle, you may pay for it many times over with knots. Work with the thread 18 to 24" long by doubling the thread at the needle area and shortening the doubled area as you sew and use up the thread.
  • Knot the ends of the threads.
  • Anchor the knot in a inside area (usually a seam allowance) near where you want or need to start sewing.
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