ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How to do Swiss Darning or Duplicate Stitch

Updated on August 27, 2019
Screffy profile image

Hello, my name is Sue and I have used swiss darning or duplicate stitch, as it is also known, to adorn many of my knitted toys.

How to do Swiss Darning or Duplicate Stitch

Swiss darning is a method of creating a picture by duplicating over your knitted stocking stitches using a different colour to the one you knitted with. You are duplicating the little V's of your knitted stocking stitch.

It is a slightly easier way of creating the intarsia look.

I have included my swiss darning/duplicate stitch chart free for you to use as much as you like. Each pink square on the chart represents one V stitch.

I have used swiss darning/duplicate stitch to add motifs on many of my knitted toys, see image 9. I swiss darned/duplicate stitched the F on Frankie's belt buckles

You Will Need:

A yarn needle.

A piece of stocking stitch knitting.

A piece of yarn the same weight as your piece of stocking stitch.

A pair of scissors.

Now you're ready to start

Step 1:

Thread your yarn needle with a piece of yarn (approximately 12 inches) the same weight as your piece of stocking stitch. The reason for this is because if you use yarn thinner than your stocking stitch the swiss darning/duplicate stitch will not cover your V's. It may be possible to go over each V more than once if you wanted to use a thinner yarn but I have not tried this. If you use a yarn thicker than your stocking stitch then you will likely lose some definition of the pattern you are trying to create.

Step 2:

Decide where you want to place your motif and bring your yarn needle up at the bottom of the first V you want to stitch and leave a 2 to 3 inch tail on the back of your work. You can catch this tail down as you stitch.

Step 3:

Insert your yarn needle under the V of the stitch above the stitch you are duplicating, see image 1. Pull your needle through. Notice that you have completed the right side of your first swiss darned/duplicate stitch.

Step 4:

To complete the left side of your V - insert your yarn needle into the bottom of the V where you first began your swiss darning/duplicate stitch. So the exact spot where you first brought your yarn needle out to begin. (If you want to you can also find the bottom of the next V with the tip of your yarn needle but if you don't feel confident to do that at this stage, that's okay). See image 2. Pull your yarn needle through. You have just finished your first swiss darn/duplicate stitch.


Don't pull your yarn too tightly as this will distort your knitted fabric. Your swiss darning/duplicate stitch should just cover the V you are working on.

Step 5:

To make your next swiss darn/duplicate stitch bring your yarn needle up at the bottom of the next V. You can work left to right, right to left or up and down, it's up to you. See image 4.

Step 6:

Repeat steps 2 to 5 until you have completed all of your swiss darning/duplicate stitch. Sew ends in neatly on the reverse of your work.

Changing colours & starting new pieces of yarn:

It easy to change colours or start a new piece of yarn too. Just finish your current piece of yarn by weaving the last 2 to 3 inches on the reverse of your work. Then start your new piece of yarn the same way as your very first piece. Leave a 2 to 3 inch tail on the back and hold it down so your first few stitches catch it to secure.

See image 7 of a completed swiss darned/duplicate stitch heart motif and image 8 to see what the back of the work looks like.

Swiss darning/duplicate stitch can be used to add motifs or letters to anything knitted . Here are a few ideas:

  • add a swiss darn/duplicate stitch motif to a sweater.
  • add a swiss darn/duplicate stitch initial/s to a bag, toy, hat or scarf.
  • add a swiss darn/duplicate stitch motif to knitted blanket squares.
  • add a swiss darn/duplicate stitch initial to a dogs knitted coat.
  • make a knitted key fob and swiss darn/duplicate stitch your or a loved ones/friend's initial on it.
  • knit up some bunting/pennants and add swiss darn/duplicate stitch motifs on each one.

The list of what you can do with this craft is endless and once you start you will be adding motifs everywhere. In fact you could even swiss darn/duplicate stitch whole pictures on sweaters, blankets or jackets.

There was a book out a few years back, see image 10, that was dedicated to swiss darning/duplicate stitch and it was called Decorating Sweaters with Duplicate Stitch. I had a look on the internet and it is still available in the UK today, Tuesday 27th August 2019, on eBay, World of Books and Roger Lucas Booksellers. The patterns will be a bit dated today but it would be a great source of inspiration.

You might want to also consider getting some squared paper and having a go at designing your own swiss darning/duplicate stitch patterns.

Practice on a few knitted squares for a while. Have some fun with it.

How to do Swiss Darning or Duplicate Stitch

Image 1
Image 1
Image 2
Image 2
Image 3
Image 3
Image 4
Image 4
Image 5
Image 5
Image 6
Image 6
Image 7
Image 7
Image 8
Image 8
Image 9
Image 9
Image 10
Image 10

How to do Swiss Darning or Duplicate Stitch

© 2019 Sue Payn


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 

      9 months ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thanks for sharing the instructions. The photos are a great addition to the article. I can see how the technique that you describe would be very useful in creating a knitted toy.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)