Different types of stitches sewing machines

Sewing machines can produce a huge variety of plain or patterned stitches. Over 3- dozen distinct stitch formations are formally recognized by the ”ISO 4915:1991” standard, involving one to seven separate threads to create the stitch. There are various types of stitching & it is done with different types of sewing machines. Like,

Straight stitch

This is versatile stitching. It is the base stitch used in almost all types of sewing.  It is mainly used for sewing seams & tucks, darts & topstitching, everything is possible with this stitch. The total stitch length can be adjusted in this type. Basically, a constant stitch length is maintained, but depending on the type of techniques used the stitch length is changed from 0 to 6mm.

Reverse straight stitch

Most advanced & modern sewing machines also have a reverse button option. You can easily sew in reverse as you press this. You can comfortably use this with a straight or zig-zag stitch. Your machine will sew that stitch backward. A reverse stitch commonly is mostly used as an Anchor Stitch. To make this stitch, straight stitch about 3-stitches forward & then shift the lever to reverse stitching & go back the same way 3-stitches. Come back & then continue your sewing. It is the perfect way to secure the stitches. You can do the same when you end your stitching.

Stretch stitch

A stretch-stitch basically is a narrow zig-zag stitch that is used to stitch knit fabrics. A straight stitch may break under the stretch of these fabrics but the cool thing is a zigzag stitch stretches according to the fabric stretch. It is also called the lightning stitch or elastic stitch. Stretch stitch is also used to join elastic & for joining fabric. It is considered a good stitch to use for mending tears in the fabric. All you need to do is to keep the torn fabric together & stitch firmly, joining the pieces.


This is very common stitching, which is found in ready to wear garments. You will find some parallel rows of straight machine stitching on the front of the fabric but zig-zag stitching on the back. This is done by using a special cover-stitch machine. However, you can also get this effect with your regular sewing machine using double needles.

Buttonhole stitch

You need to manually adjust your zig zag sewing machine to sew beautiful buttonholes. However, it needs great effort & practice. Some machine comes with single-step buttonhole stitch & some with double steps.

Overlock stitch

An over-lock is a kind of stitch that sews over the edge of 1 or 2 pieces of cloth for edging & hemming or seaming. Normally an overlock sewing machine will also cut the edges of the cloth as they are fed through such machines which are called “sergers”  yet some are made without cutters.

Zigzag Stitch

A zigzag stitch is an alternative geometry of the lockstitch. Generally, It’s a back-&-forward stitch usually used where a straight stitch will not enough, for instance in reinforcing buttonholes, in stitching stretchable fabrics, & in temporarily joining 2-workpieces edge-to-edge.

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