Learn hand embroidery. Watch a step-by-step demonstration of the scroll stitch as seen in the October 2014 issue of American Patchwork & Quilting.

October 13, 2016

Looking for more embroidery stitches? See more here.


Hi, I'm Jennifer with American Patchwork and Quilting magazine, here with more stitches to savor, brought to you by designer Sue Spargo. For today's stitch, we're going to learn the scroll stitch. And it produces a beautiful scalloped edge, which you can use to enhance the edge of your applique. And for this exercise I'm going to be working with a size five pearl cotton. Now the scroll stitch is one that I think is more beautiful the heavier weight thread that you have. But so that you can see how I wrap the thread, I'm going to use a size five pearl cotton in the demonstration. Let's get started. So to begin with the scroll stitch, bring your needle up from the back of your work, and then you're going to take a stitch about a quarter inch away from where your thread emerges. And make a little diagonal stitch into your background or your applique. And you want to catch a little bit of that background in that stitch. Then take your emerging thread (the one that's coming out of the background), and take it underneath the needle. Leave the needle in the fabric as I did. Bring your thread underneath the needle and then wrap it around, and go underneath the front of the needle. You're making a little loop there. You're going counterclockwise under the back of the needle and then under the front of the needle. You're going to pull that thread taut. And then you're going to pull the needle through. And you'll see that a little scroll or loop appears where it pulled it through. Then I'm ready to do the same thing. Take another stitch about a quarter inch away. Capture a little bit of my background fabric or applique. Wrap underneath the needle in the back, underneath the needle in the front, pull that thread taut, and pull my needle through. Now how tight or loose you pull your thread is going to determine how much of a scallop you get along this edge. And this is where if you're using a little bit heavier weight thread or something that fills in the gap a little bit more, you'll get a more loopy stitch. So experiment with different kinds of threads. Regardless of your thread choice I think if you give the scroll stitch a try, you'll find that it is a stitch you want to savor.