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Romanian couching stitch

  • Roumanian stitch
  • Couched satin stitch
  • Roman stitch
  • Oriental stitch
  • Antique stitch
  • Indian filling stitch
  • Janina stitch

This stitch is a version of Romanian couching which is suitable for small or narrow areas.  It consists of laid stitches each of which are couched down with a small diagonal stitch using the same thread to form a ridge down the centre of the stitched area.  This is a form of self-couching.

Historically, it is likely that this stitch is a development of Romanian couching: the earliest known examples date from 17th century England, whereas self-couching generally goes back centuries.  The main difference between the two stitches are that this version has a single couched stitch anchoring each laid stitch, and those couched stitches form a slightly raised line; Romanian couching normally has multiple couching stitches holding down each laid stitch and their position is not prescribed.

This stitch is awaiting a sponsor.


Structure of stitch

Common uses

Embroidery Techniques

Related Stitches


  • Mary Thomas’s Dictionary of Embroidery Stitches (1934) , p.176
  • Mrs Archibald Christie, Samplers and Stitches (1921) , p.18
  • W.G. Paulson Townsend, Louisa F. Pesel, Walter Crane, Embroidery or the Craft of the Needle (1907) , p.67
  • Louisa F Pesel, Stitches from old English embroideries (1912) , p.13
  • '17th century holly-patterned hanging', Victoria and Albert Museum (2021). Available at: (Accessed: 15 December 2021)