Bullion Knots

Bullion Knots are one of my favourite embroidery stitches and I use them quite a lot in my embroidery. Bullion Knots also known as caterpillar stitch, worm stitch, grub stitch, coil stitch and post stitch. Bullion knots are at first a little tricky to do but once mastered they can give your work a lovely raised appearance.

To create Bullion Knots there a two methods you can do, it is entirely up to you and you should choose which method works best for you and which feels comfortable. 

Method 1
Bring your needle up at 1 and down at 2. Pull your needle through but leave a loop of thread. You need to leave the loop quite long because you are going to twist it around your needle! Bring your needle back up at 1. Your needle should emerge out of the fabric but not come all the way through. Next twist your thread around the needle point. This can be done 5 to 8 times, depending on the size of the space between 1 and 2. Next holding the twists in place pull the needle through. Pull the threads towards 2 and pack tight with the needle then take the needle down at 2 to finish the knot.

Method 2
Bring your needle up at A and insert it to the right at B, the required length of the knot, emerging again at A. Don't pull the needle through the fabric, first twist the thread around the needle. Again the number of twists depends on the size of the knot to be worked. Hold the twists in place and gently pull the needle and the thread through the twists. As you do this pull the thread in the direction of B, pull the thread to tighten the twists and insert the needle at B pulling through to the wrong side of the fabric.

Bullion knots can be scattered and formed into flowers as in the example above.


  1. There fab aren't they, I'm addicted to them lol

  2. Gracias por mostrar estas lindas estrellas.

  3. Thankyou for the tutorial,Sarah. I was aware of the second method,but the first one is new to me.

    Regards from India,

  4. Your welcome, I prefer to use method one as I find this easier.

  5. I'm practicing these, but always end up in a tangled mess!

  6. Hi Nikka I think the trick is to keep the twist tight around the needle to prevent it getting all tangled up. I had this problem too when I first started stitching them!

  7. Thank you, Sarah. I really love bullion knots and thanks God, I have a lot of order from this, :)

  8. Hello Sarah,
    Thank you so much for this simple and well written tutorial. My Mother taught me to embroider when I was a girl of 8. I am now a Grandmother of 7, three of which are girls who are learning embroidery from me! This is a a new stitch I had forgotten how to make, and now I can teach my girls!


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