Couching Stitch & Variations


Uses:  Clothes, Hair, Foliage, Animals, Bird, Buildings, Borders, Details, Mountains, Fields

Looking around in the shops, you will find an array of wonderful, interesting threads and yarns that cannot be used in needlepoint-but perhaps you would like to incorporate them into your projects. How do you use these fun threads?  Try couching them.


To couch, you need two threads and two needles.  You need the thread you would like to couch, and the thread you use for couching, or fastening the specialty thread to the canvas.  Just about any thread or yarn you wish can be couched.  If the thread is too bulky to pass through the canvas, you may have to get a little creative  with the ends.


Anchor the end to the back of the canvas.  (Red)  Bring the thread to the top of the canvas and set it aside.  Do the same with the second thread-only bring it up where you want to start couching at A.  (Black)  Loop the second thread over the first at B. This will start to secure the red thread.  Repeat this until you reach the end of the thread.  The first thread can be laid on the canvas in a line or curve.

Here you can see couching in a horizontal, vertical and diagonal line.  Couching can be very close to one another or far apart depending upon what you would like to achieve.

More Ideas

Note:  Also see Chain Couching

Couching with Herringbone
Couching with Breton
Couching with Cross
Couching with Detached Twisted Chain
Couching with Detached Open Chain
Couching with Laced Detached Chain
Couching with Laced Slanted Detached Chain