How do you secure a decorative stitch?

In this article, we’ll explore various methods for securing decorative stitches to prevent them from unraveling or coming loose.

If you’re a sewing enthusiast, you know the joy of adding decorative stitches to your projects. These intricate designs can elevate the appearance of your creations, whether you’re making garments, home decor items, or accessories.

Decorative stitches add a touch of elegance and personality to your sewing projects. But those beautiful details can unravel if not secured properly. Fear not, fellow fabric enthusiasts! Here’s a guide to keeping your decorative stitches locked in place:

Importance of Securing Decorative Stitches

Before delving into specific techniques, it’s crucial to understand why securing decorative stitches is essential. Unlike regular stitches used for construction, decorative stitches serve primarily aesthetic purposes.

 As such, they may not be subjected to the same level of tension and stress as functional stitches. However, ensuring their security is still paramount to maintaining the overall quality and longevity of your sewing projects.

decorative stitch

Tips for Securing Decorative Stitches

  1. Lock Stitch Button: Many modern sewing machines have a lock stitch button. This handy feature automatically ties off the threads at the end of your decorative stitch pattern, preventing unraveling. Consult your machine’s manual to locate this button and utilize its power!
  2. Reverse and Sew: For machines without a lock stitch button, the classic “reverse and sew” method works wonders. Sew a few stitches forward with your decorative stitch. Then, engage the reverse function and sew back over those stitches.

Repeat this process a couple of times to create a secure knot. Finally, sew a few stitches forward in a straight stitch to “bury” the ends.

  • Knot It Up: For extra security, especially on delicate fabrics, tie a small knot at the end of your threads after stitching. Tuck the knot ends under the fabric and secure them with a few straight stitches.
  • Fusible Web: This double-sided adhesive tape can be a lifesaver. Cut a small piece of fusible web and place it on the backside of your fabric, where the thread tails end.

Iron it in place according to the web’s instructions. This will help prevent the threads from fraying.

 These knots come in various forms, like the square knot or the overhand knot. A quick search online will provide visuals and instructions for these knots.

Embroidery Knots
  •  Using Fray Check or Fabric Glue: For added security, consider applying fray check or fabric glue to the ends of your decorative stitch lines.

These products create a protective barrier that prevents the threads from fraying or coming loose. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions when using these products to avoid damaging your fabric.

  •  Reinforcing with Topstitching: In some cases, reinforcing decorative stitches with topstitching can provide extra stability.

After completing the decorative stitch, sew a line of regular stitches parallel to it, using a coordinating thread color.

  • Testing on Scrap Fabric: Before stitching decorative elements onto your main project, it’s wise to test the stitch on a scrap piece of fabric.

This allows you to adjust tension settings, stitch length, and thread type to achieve the desired result.

 Once you’re satisfied with the test stitch, you can proceed with confidence on your actual project.

decorative stitch

Bonus Tips:

  • Thread Choice: Use thread appropriate for your fabric weight. A thicker thread will naturally hold its form better than a very fine thread.
  • Needle Size: The right needle size for your fabric will create proper stitch formation and prevent loose threads.


Securing decorative stitches is essential for ensuring the longevity and integrity of your sewing projects. By employing techniques such as backstitching, knotting, fray check, and

testing on scrap fabric, you can confidently incorporate decorative stitches into your creations without worrying about them unraveling or coming loose.

Practice makes perfect! Experiment with different securing methods on scrap fabric before tackling your final project. With a little finesse, your decorative stitches will stay put, adding lasting beauty to your creations.

Experiment with different methods to find the one that works best for your specific project and fabric type.

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