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Chequer stitch icon
Chequer stitch

Alternating blocks of contrasting stitch texture to achieve a chequerboard effect.  The blocks are alternately made up of tent stitch or longer diagonal stitches.

Chequer stitch is generously sponsored by Sheila Shipstone



Begin with a tent stitch in the top left hand corner.


Then make a stitch across two canvas intersections.


Then across three, then four.


Then three, then two and finally another tent stitch.


Directly next to this make a square of sixteen tent stitches (i.e. four by four).


Continue with these two blocks across a horizontal row. On the row below, place the tent stitch block under the cushion block and the cushion block under the tent block. Make sure all the stitches angle from the bottom left to the top right.

Chequer stitch

Structure of stitch

Common uses

Embroidery Techniques

Identifying Chequer stitch

This chequerboard stitch is made up of two alternating stitch blocks of tent and cushion stitch. The cushion stitch is made of seven diagonal stitches, covering a square of four by four canvas threads.​


  • Mrs Archibald Christie, Samplers and Stitches (1921) , p.92
  • Mary Thomas’s Dictionary of Embroidery Stitches (1934) , p.45
  • Jennifer Campbell, Ann-Marie Bakewell, Guide to Embroidery Stitches (2004)
  • Sarah Whittle, The Needlecraft Stitch Directory (2012)