A Quilter's Alphabet

A Quilter’s Alphabet: Letter R for Running Stitch and Redwork Quilting

Hi friends!

Today in the A Quilter’s Alphabet series, Tammy and I are on the letter R! I will be chatting about redwork quilting and the running stitch!

Top US quilting blog and shop, Seams Like a Dream Quilt Designs, shares about redwork quilting in the Quilter's Alphabet series!

Redwork quilting

Redwork is a type of stitching where pictures or images are embroidered in red embroidery floss often on a white or cream background fabric. The technique usually uses a few different stitches though common ones are the backstitch and the stem stitch.

And while the designs are usually embroidered with red floss, sometimes the technique might be used with blue or even black thread. I guess then we should called it Bluework or Blackwork!

 If you like handwork, a whole quilt of redwork blocks would be beautiful!

Running stitch 

A running stitch is a series of hand stitches sewn in a row that looks like a dashed line. It is often used for hand piecing quilt blocks, hand quilting and to add embellishment.

To create this stitch, you would have your needle go in and out of the fabric in a continual motion.

Are you a fan of handwork? I have quilting friends who like to do some hand stitching; they enjoy hand stitching the back of the binding to their quilt. I know I like doing that. I find it relaxing- except when I am pushing up against a deadline!

But I have other quilting friends who hate hand work and always machine stitch their binding down on both sides. 

So … are you a hand stitching is OK kind of quilter or do you say NO WAY! to handwork? Enquiring minds just want to know  (no judgement- this a judgement free zone!). Let me know in the comments!

Tammy is chatting about right sides together and rulers so click here to head on over to her post.

Next week in our Exploring the Basics series, Tammy and I will be exploring triangles- not all triangles are created equal!

happy quilting!



Did you hear that I am teaching at the Vermont Quilt Festival??? And since it is a virtual show this year, you don’t have to travel to Vermont to attend!

Click here to go to the VQF site and check out my class fun with Braids and click here to check out my class Pack it Up! I can’t wait; they will be so much fun!

I will also be doing a lecture so if you are not part of a quilt guild, it is a great way to catch one of my more popular lectures for guilds. Click here to learn more my lecture at the Vermont Quilt Festival.


By the way, I love to chat with guilds so if your guild is looking for lecturers and teachers, I would love to hear from you! I am working on filling up my 2022 calendar!

2 thoughts on “A Quilter’s Alphabet: Letter R for Running Stitch and Redwork Quilting”

  1. I avoid hand stitching at all cost. I machine stitch both sides of my binding. Usually the only hand work that I do on my quilt is sewing the label on the back. However I love to cross stitch, can’t quite seem to figure out that contradiction.

    1. Shari,
      Oh…that’s so funny! It’s interesting what part of the process we don’t like doing! I don’t mind handwork but for some reason I am not a fan of adding the borders! Some people like that stage as it means they are getting close to having the top done. I dislike wrangling the quilt, pinning the long sections… silliness!

      I like cross-stitch too!

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