Definition of stitch in English:

stitch

noun

  • 1A loop of thread or yarn resulting from a single pass or movement of the needle in sewing, knitting, or crocheting.

    • ‘Our modes and tonality, diverse ingredients and style unite in a tapestry of stitches belonging to different needles.’
    • ‘Crocheting, which is as easy as knitting, simply uses different stitches and a hooked needle.’
    • ‘There are over 400 stitches on the needles at the moment and each row is going at a torturously slow pace.’
    • ‘Old grandmothers sitting in a circle were stitching tiny colourful stitches on a quilt.’
    • ‘Delicately, she took up her crochet needles once more, and started her stitch.’
    • ‘Holding the needle thread tail, take a stitch to draw the bobbin thread to the tuck surface.’
    • ‘Many is the judge whose lack of knowledge of needlework and stitches didn't prevent them staring with great interest at the costumes.’
    • ‘Students learn to do math by knitting stitches together, and to count by placing nuts into bags.’
    • ‘The women got down to work on it with large needles and red stitches.’
    • ‘They even found a small kit for sewing stitches, just in case anyone knew how.’
    • ‘They had to show me at least five ‘good’ running stitches, stitches that were the same length.’
    • ‘The quilter first outlines her design with fine, tiny stitches, sewing front and back layers together at the same time.’
    • ‘Thread the end of the yarn in a large-eyed needle and make a few stitches through the end of the tube to secure it before cutting off the yarn.’
    • ‘You may count the stitches in a needlework more easily than with the textile actually in your hands.’
    • ‘The first person she saw was Sally, sitting on one of the chairs, sewing fine, little stitches on her handkerchief.’
    • ‘The lines are stitched in perfectly even stitches using waxed thread.’
    • ‘Lorinda begins designing by playing with different stitches and needles sizes.’
    • ‘Stitch the mouth with a straight stitch, retracing the stitches as before on the ears.’
    • ‘Catherine took a few stitches with her needle, and then sat the material back on her lap.’
    • ‘There's the strong likelihood of my stitches sliding off my needles with every movement.’
    1. 1.1 A loop of thread used to join the edges of a wound or surgical incision.
      ‘a neck wound requiring forty stitches’
      • ‘The wound took thirty stitches to suture, and by the time they returned to the cabin, it was midmorning.’
      • ‘Other lesions can be cut out entirely and the wound closed up with stitches.’
      • ‘When the operation is complete, the incisions are closed with stitches and the four small wounds are covered with dressings.’
      • ‘The man required stitches to close a wound to the back of his head.’
      • ‘He had 19 surgical staples in his head wounds and other stitches in his hand, shoulder and leg.’
      • ‘She said she had suffered continuing problems since the cheetah attacked her leg, ripping open a wound that required 28 stitches and years of physiotherapy.’
      • ‘Skin adhesive (such as Dermabond) is a way to close small wounds without stitches.’
      • ‘He required stitches for both wounds but is now believed to have made a full recovery.’
      • ‘Each pile is tied off with a surgical stitch, or suture, and then the pile is cut away.’
      • ‘He required six stitches for a face wound.’
      • ‘Your surgeon will then close the incision with stitches or clips and cover it with a dressing.’
      • ‘The skin is sewn together with stitches using a tiny needle.’
      • ‘Because the surgeon can reach the eardrum through ear canal, there is no visible incision or stitches.’
      • ‘Postoperatively all the patients had healthy wounds and the stitches were removed on day 7.’
      • ‘His wife, who is now separated from him, required 50 stitches to close the wound in her head.’
      • ‘The surgical wound clips or stitches may be removed while in hospital just before going home, but on occasion they will be removed after discharge from hospital by a GP or a nurse.’
      • ‘Following the assault last October, her cheekbone was found to be fractured, her finger broken and she required 24 stitches to head wounds.’
      • ‘Meanwhile, a defensive midfielder was the second Stanley player in a week to require stitches to a leg wound.’
      • ‘The wires holding the sternum together are permanent, but the stitches closing the wound will gradually dissolve.’
      • ‘Doctors do not usually use stitches to treat puncture wounds.’
    2. 1.2usually with modifier A method of sewing, knitting, or crocheting producing a particular pattern or design.
      ‘basic embroidery stitches’
      • ‘Though lighter to wear, silk is not as durable as velvet, particularly when confronted with thousands of embroidery stitches.’
      • ‘She used satin stitches extensively for flowers and leaves, and cross stitches elsewhere.’
      • ‘In Claim 3, it will mean those stitches and the embroidery stitches.’
      • ‘He painted designs for richly embroidered ecclesiastical vestments that required satin stitch and raised work in metallic and silk threads.’
      • ‘Apply it sparingly between buttonhole stitches and let it dry before cutting them open.’
      • ‘The standard corner stitch is used for closure of tissue corners with an approximate 90-degree angle.’
      • ‘The three layers are stitched together with quilting stitches that, until very recently, were worked by hand.’
      • ‘I found the making up for this pattern to be a bit odd and best countered with mattress stitch.’
      • ‘They are made from pieces of muslin, constructed like a rag doll stuffed with scraps, with the outer surface covered with parallel darning stitches.’
      • ‘In a circular pattern around and over and through the cross are appliquéd arcs and embroidered stitch marks that carry the eye round and round in an almost dizzying motion.’
      • ‘The beads were sewn on with an appliqué stitch using two needles.’
      • ‘Mom taught me the basic knit stitches when I was a kid.’
      • ‘Stitch the buttonhole as usual, removing any basting stitches when finished.’
      • ‘The V-neck style also has extensive tonal stitch detail.’
      • ‘Each of these large areas are edged with stem or outline stitch in a contrasting colour.’
      • ‘Eileen spoke about printing onto interesting papers, transferring to materials, enhancing with pens and paint, machine stitching as well as hand stitches.’
      • ‘Some machines have the capability to automatically sew a tapered satin stitch.’
      • ‘Make yourself this rainbow of a belt using two simple crochet stitches.’
      • ‘This work is done in long and short darn stitch created into innumerable designs and patterns.’
      • ‘As young girls learn embroidery stitches from older women, they are initiated into the culture.’
    3. 1.3informal in singular , usually with negative The smallest item of clothing.
      ‘a man answered the door without a stitch on’
      • ‘Clad almost entirely in leather of a soft natural hue, the only stitch of clothing not fashioned from tanned animal skin was the linen material draped snug across their chiseled chests.’
      • ‘I think everybody took nearly every stitch of clothing we had off and emptied our pockets to give them everything we could.’
      • ‘Staff passing by the windows of his sealed ward would see him jumping on his bed and waving to them, without a stitch of clothing on.’
      • ‘But there you were without a stitch of clothing on.’
      • ‘Even with his promising not to remove a stitch of clothing during Sunday halftime performance, the NFL isn't about to go for anything smaller.’
      • ‘This was a friend from New York, a boy scout no less, who I never saw with a stitch of clothing on the entire time.’
      • ‘He hadn't a stitch of sportswear to pound the streets when he took the plunge to enter the New York City Marathon.’
      • ‘Everyone who's normal should flop around their homes aimlessly without a stitch of clothing on at least once a month.’
      • ‘Kip picks up a black-and-white picture of two men standing outdoors with their arms around each other's slender waists - and not a stitch of clothing on either.’
      • ‘I just splashed up and down, not a stitch of clothing on.’
      • ‘When I shop, I simply must try on every stitch of clothing - it is not unusual to spend two or three hours in the dressing room.’
      • ‘THe trippers were happily munching sandwiches when they saw two women without a stitch of clothing being photographed by an older man near Scorton.’
      • ‘What in the world was she doing hanging in chains from a wall, without a stitch of clothing?’
      • ‘Isn't it a terrible country we're living in at the moment when poor people can't get a stitch to suit them in it.’
      • ‘She didn't have a stitch of clothing on her body.’
      • ‘Though her every possession down to her last stitch of clothing has been in and out of hock she remains loyal to her wise cracking beau.’
      • ‘If skimpy clothing is the lifeline of the ramp, the biggest fashion show is staged on the banks of Ganges every twelfth year when thousands of Naga sadhus parade without even a stitch on their body.’
      • ‘Why, if their measure is to be taken from this lass, she hasn't a stitch of clothing, let alone a periapt or weapon.’
      • ‘However, since she was brave enough to walk into the station without a stitch of clothing, all duty officers could do was shake their heads that the woman had the audacity to commit such an act.’
  • 2A sudden sharp pain in the side of the body, caused by strenuous exercise.

    ‘she ran with a stitch in her side’
    • ‘I was already getting stitches in the side, from trying not to laugh.’
    • ‘She clutched at a throbbing stitch in her side and ran on.’
    • ‘She remembered running, running all the way to Marcus Berenson's house, her anger fuelling her, not even caring about the stitch in her side, or her gasping lungs.’
    • ‘I dashed out of class, grabbed the books I needed from my locker, and sprinted to my car so quickly I got a stitch in my side.’
    • ‘The teachers jogged off-court, many of them out of breath, panting, or clutching stitches at their sides.’
    • ‘Ryan was bent over by a tree, holding a stitch in his side.’
    • ‘She made it to the very end of the hall, gasping for air with one hand gripping at the stitch in her side, the other clutching her forehead.’
    • ‘When Meg reached the Movement classroom, she was out of breath, blinking, and clutching a stitch at her side.’
    • ‘As I staggered onto the airstrip, clutching the stitch in my side and breathing hard, I tried to recall where I had seen that design of red and white.’
    • ‘‘She's coming,’ he gasps, clutching at a stitch in his side.’
    • ‘Shaking, he entered, disregarding the stitch in his side and the back of his sweat-soaked tunic clinging to his flesh.’
    • ‘Her legs were starting to grow tired and sore, and a stitch of pain was erupting in her side.’
    • ‘I continued running and running, even when I felt a sharp stitch at my side.’
    • ‘The stitch in her side burned painfully and her legs ached.’
    • ‘Almost out of breath and with a painful stitch in my side, I forced myself into motion once again.’
    • ‘I went to his side, breathing heavily and clutching at a stitch at my side.’
    • ‘The stitch in her side was growing more and more painful with each step.’
    • ‘He stopped outside his house, clutching a stitch in his side.’
    • ‘She ran until she had a stitch in her side and then slowed down.’
    • ‘I didn't care, and felt the urge to swear again but was too out of breath to do more than wheeze and clutch at the stitch in my side.’
    sharp pain, stabbing pain, shooting pain, stab of pain, pang, twinge, spasm
    View synonyms

verb

[WITH OBJECT]
  • Make, mend, or join (something) with stitches.

    ‘stitch a plain seam with right sides together’
    ‘they stitched the cut on her face’
    as adjective ,in combination ‘hand-stitched English dresses’
    • ‘Once the fabric is stitched to the inside of the boot, it will block human odor for the life of the boot.’
    • ‘Each part is then stitched together like a quilt, sometimes almost a note at a time.’
    • ‘He was taken to Frere Hospital where a large gash in his leg was stitched.’
    • ‘The pattern is programmed to stitch an outline around the shape to hold it in place while the edge is stitched.’
    • ‘Beginning in the quilt center, machine stitch in the ditch along all vertical seamlines.’
    • ‘To keep the quality on par with branded items, the cloth is double stitched.’
    • ‘We buy cloth and patterns, and cut them out, and stitch them together.’
    • ‘Once the implant is in place, the gum is stitched over it and the area is left to heal.’
    • ‘That the poor she visited probably stitched her underwear together for a dollar a week never occurs to her.’
    • ‘The dresses are stitched on the institute premises by the students and displayed on a select day.’
    • ‘To allow for turn of the cloth, stitch right next to the crease, with the needle toward the cut edge.’
    • ‘The victim went to the infirmary and left after a nurse stitched his wound.’
    • ‘Place the tape on the inside of the roll line and hand stitch firmly in place on both long edges.’
    • ‘At the end of the design, carefully stitch directly over three or four beginning stitches.’
    • ‘It was then explained to me that she creates the clothing by layering and drying the acrylic paint into designs which she then stitches together into finished pieces.’
    • ‘Fred had stitched fine patchwork quilts that covered the beds and hung on the walls of his house.’
    • ‘It really is amazing to think that children as young as seven stitched samplers.’
    • ‘Stuff legs with batting and stitch ends together to form a stalk long enough to wrap around child.’
    • ‘He had screamed in agony as cuts on his feet were stitched without anaesthetic.’
    • ‘Quilters don't just stitch fabric pieces together, they sew fine art.’
    sew, baste, tack, seam, hem
    View synonyms

Phrases

  • in stitches

    • informal Laughing uncontrollably.

      ‘his unique brand of droll self-mockery had his audiences in stitches’
      • ‘They all arrived at the bathroom at the same time to see their mother in stitches on the floor, laughing.’
      • ‘It worked so well: the entire area was in stitches laughing, myself included.’
      • ‘The funnyman had TV viewers in stitches with his no-nonsense approach to football during World Cup ad breaks and now he is proving his sporting prowess in the new event.’
      • ‘We were in stitches at the idea of him suddenly recognising in horror that the grubby waif loitering around Grand Central for a cheap meal was actually his petite cousin.’
      • ‘He had a jocular way of telling his point of view and that often had the Senate in stitches.’
      • ‘You may or may not be in stitches, and maybe seeing it in print isn't the best way to appreciate it, but believe it or not the above joke has been scientifically proven to be the funniest there is.’
      • ‘The glorious absurdity of that one line had me in stitches.’
      • ‘The actor-comedian kept the graduates and crowd of 30,000 in stitches.’
      • ‘By the time we reached the ship, we were all in stitches with tears running down our cheeks we were laughing so hard.’
      • ‘Tom and Freddie had a packed house in Dunphy's of Kill on Wednesday night and the comedian Big Mike had the crowd in stitches with his wonderful jokes.’
  • a stitch in time saves nine

    • proverb If you sort out a problem immediately it may save a lot of extra work later.

      • ‘But definitely do this; your swimmer is only 14 and a stitch in time saves nine.’
      • ‘But we will explain to people that sometimes a stitch in time saves nine and that there can be false economy.’
      • ‘Men say that a stitch in time saves nine, and so they take a thousand stitches today to save nine tomorrow.’
      • ‘The lead officer said: ‘It's a case of a stitch in time saves nine.’’
      • ‘The Prime Minister has told us that a stitch in time saves nine, and in New Zealand First we totally agree with that statement, particularly as it relates to the health system.’
      • ‘And so for these companies, the stitch in time has indeed saved nine.’
      • ‘In health, we believe a stitch in time saves nine.’
      • ‘To employ an old bromide: "A stitch in time saves nine".’
      • ‘We were always taught that a stitch in time saves nine, and perhaps that is exactly the case with the health system.’

Origin

Old English stice ‘a puncture, stabbing pain’, of Germanic origin; related to German Stich ‘a sting, prick’, also to stick. The sense ‘loop’ (in sewing etc.) arose in Middle English.

Pronunciation

stitch

/stiCH//stɪtʃ/