Chicken Scratch Embroidery

What Is Chicken Scratch Embroidery?
As the early settlers moved across America, the craft came with them. Thus, it's known by different names: Amish embroidery, depression lace, lace stitch, and snowflake embroidery.

Chicken Scratch is an easy type of embroidery, which gives the impression of appliquéd lace. With certain stitches, the thread or floss creates a lacelike design on the fabric. Three stitches are used to create chicken scratch embroidery – the double cross-stitch, the straight running stitch, and the weaving stitch.


Complete the chicken scratch fill in the following order.

#1 DOUBLE CROSS STITCH. As the name implies, this stitch is actually made up of two cross stitches -- one right over the other. First do diagonal "A - B" then return with diagonal "C - D" to make the first cross stitch. Now do vertical stitch "E - F" and finish with horizontal stitch "G-H" to complete the second cross stitch.

#2 RUNNING STITCH. For the neatest look on your finished piece, work all of the vertical stitches first and then return to finish the horizontal stitches using the running stitch. This is simple passing the needle up and down through the cloth along the printed line.

#3 WEAVING STITCH. The floss is woven under each of the four running stitches that meet. Start by bringing your needle through the back of the fabric just alongside the end of a running stitch. Work the needle under each of the four stitches (working on top of the fabric only.) To end the stitch, put the needle down into the same hole that the stitch started in. Do not pull the floss too tightly, otherwise you will distort the stitch. TO REVIEW, bring the needle through the back of the fabric at point A, then thread the needle under the Running Stitches 1, 2, 3, and 4. Now, return the needle through point A again.