All About The Balloon Stitch

Learn all about the balloon stitch and how you can use it on your needlepoint canvases...

Earlier this week, I shared the balloon stitch with you on Needlepoint TV™.  It’s a very functional stitch – and it’s one that you can use on your canvases in a variety of ways. It’s a rather large stitch which means you’ll need plenty of space in order to establish the pattern, so keep that in mind when considering it for one of your projects. The balloon stitch is a member of the straight stitch family.

Here’s a picture of the balloon stitch for you…

Balloon stitch is great for backgrounds on your needlepoint canvases!

The balloon stitch is easy peasy to execute.

And that makes it a terrific choice for beginning stitchers – or for anyone who’s new to using canvas embroidery stitches on their needlepoint projects.

I’m sharing my diagram with you here so that you can give it a try for yourself. 😉

The balloon stitch is a member of the straight stitch family.

You can employ the balloon stitch for a number of different design components on your needlepoint projects, including

  • sky
  • clouds
  • roofs
  • clothing
  • wallpaper
  • furniture cushions
  • rugs
  • and, of course, backgrounds

There are lots of thread options when using the balloon stitch on your projects…

however, since this is a true straight stitch, you’ll want to use a thicker thread than you would typically use for full coverage on any given size canvas mesh. For example, if you want to use the balloon stitch for the background on 18 mesh canvas, you could use Silk and Ivory. And if you want to use the balloon stitch for the sky on 13 mesh canvas, you might consider (3 strands of) Watercolours.

True straight stitches lay in the channel between two canvas threads, so that’s why you need thicker thread – or more strands of thread – to achieve full coverage. It’s just one of those things I call “needlepoint physics”. 😉

Of course, if your goal is to achieve light coverage, allowing the artist’s shading to show through, you can use just about any kind of thread you want.

Here’s a picture of what the balloon stitch looks like worked in Silk and Ivory on 18 mesh needlepoint canvas…

Balloon stitch worked in 1 strand of Silk and Ivory thread on 18 mesh canvas

And here’s a picture of it executed in three strands of Watercolours on 13 mesh needlepoint canvas…

Balloon stitch worked in 3 strands of Watercolours on 13 mesh canvas

Alrighty, my friend, that’s all for now. If you decide to use this fantabulous stitch on one of your projects, please let me know. And I’d love to see a picture, so if you post one on social media, be sure and tag me (@serendipityneedleworks) or use our hashtag #serendipityneedleworks.

You might just find your picture featured on my Facebook or Instagram feeds. 😉

Have a terrific rest of your day and, until next time…

Happy Stitching!

XOXO!! ❤️
Stitch with a smile!



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Serendipity Needleworks

Hi, I’m Ellen. A needlepoint teacher and author dedicated to helping motivated but overwhelmed stitchers at every stage find exactly what they need to stitch with confidence. Whether you’re just dipping your toe into the needlepoint world or you’re ready to take your skills to the next level, I’ve fine-tuned a learning experience just for you.

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