Coral stitch is featured as an outline stitch in the Queen Anne corner of the Crewel Work Sampler stitched at the Royal School of Needlework during the early 1950s. I have never seen this stitch featured in a Stitch Dictionary which has motivated me to share it with you. Coral Knot stitch is often referred to as Coral Stitch but this is different.

Place your fabric in a hoop so that it is taut. DMC Perle 5 was used for this demonstration.

1. Work from right to left. Bring the thread to the front at the start of the line. Take the needle to the back above the line with the thread in a loop as shown.

Coral Stitch #1

2. Bring the needle back to the front an equal distance below the line and within the loop as shown.

Coral Stitch #2

3. Pull the thread vertically up towards your nose.

Coral Stitch #3

4. And here is the tricky bit. Adjust the length of the arms by pulling the thread away from you in a horizontal direction and then towards you horizontally until the length of the two arms of the stitch are equal.

Coral Stitch #4

Worked in the traditional manner this is a ‘squared stitch’ meaning that the space between the stitches is equal to the width of the stitch.

Squared Coral Stitch

Also, it is preferable to use a thicker thread and decrease the size of ‘the square’ so that the black line is completely covered. If you look at the Queen Anne sampler, you will notice that the squares are so tight that it is hard to see the construction of the stitch.

Here are some examples of using the stitch in a more relaxed and contemporary manner. These are far easier to stitch than the traditional style where it really shows if the stitches are not an even size and spacing. I like the circular placement and think that it would nice alternative to Buttonhole Stitch and is much easier to control.

Contemporary Coral Stitch

Circular Coral Stitch

S Shaped Coral Stitch

What will this stitch do for you?

Tags: Crewel Designs

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