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Half cross tent stitch icon
Half cross tent stitch

  • Half stitch
  • Tent stitch
  • Trammed tent stitch
  • Half-cross tent stitch

This is a form of tent stitch, the simplest and most common stitch in canvaswork and the foundation for many other stitches. Tent stitch is a diagonal stitch, usually worked across a single intersection of canvas from bottom left to top right.

Half cross tent stitch is worked in rows and makes a vertical stitch on the back.  It uses the minimum amount of thread on the reverse of the canvas.

For more information about this stitch see the entry for tent stitch.

Half cross tent stitch is generously sponsored by Sally Jorden



Working from right to left, make a tent stitch from top right to bottom left.


On the reverse of the canvas make vertical stitch up across one thread of canvas.


Begin the next tent stitch, again working from top right to bottom left. The back of an area worked in half cross will be quite open and will all be vertical stitches.


To work a row from left to right, the order of the stitch is reversed: i.e. bottom left to top right.

Half cross tent stitch

Structure of stitch

Embroidery Techniques


  • Various Authors, The Royal School of Needlework Book of Embroidery (2018) , p.125
  • Santina M. Levey, The Embroideries at Hardwick Hall: a catalogue (2007) , p.271