What is Couching or Braiding in Sewing?

Couching, which can also be referred to as braiding is a form of embellishment done on the top of fabrics with yarn, cording or ribbon. The embellishment of choice is laid out on top of the fabric and can then be sewn down with either a straight stitch or a decorative stitch. It is a simple sewing technique that can turn your basic beginner projects into a work of art by adding some texture.

When I discovered this technique I fell a bit in love with it. I have been using it for several years now and wanted to share it with our beginners. Taking something very basic and adding a 3D element really makes each project pop with color and uniqueness!

Give it a try

I encourage you to test it out. Try it with a project that you are already comfortable sewing. Create a design using yarn, cording, or ribbon, and see how much it changes the look of your project.

Tools to help

Although you can attempt this technique using a regular presser foot (I did for several years), there is actually a presser foot that can help you called a couching foot braiding presser foot. You will indeed need to find one that is compatible with your specific sewing machine, however, this is the one that I use:

Watch it in action

More helpful presser feet

Joan Mantini

About Joan Mantini

After several years of being the Facebook page owner at Beginner Sewing, I noticed there was a desperate need to have a single go-to spot for members to be able to find answers to their common questions, get some useful tips & tricks, as well as find reputable places to purchase sewing products online. Taking my role as a trade publication editor by day, and combining it with my knowledge of frequently requested beginner sewing advice, I created www.beginner-sewing.com. An outlet that gives new sewists a free digital magazine geared for entry level sewing as an extra bonus!

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