Blanket stitch

The Blanket Stitch is a stitch used to reinforce the edge of thick materials. It is also called a whip stitch. It is defined as "A decorative stitch used to finish an unhemmed blanket. The stitch can be seen on both sides of the blanket." This stitch has become popular for use with polar fleece produced by Malden Mills and Berkshire Blankets of Ware Massachusetts. This stitch has long been both an application by hand and as a machine sewn stitch.

Distinction between mechanical and hand-stitching

The blanket stitch as a hand stitch is also considered a crochet stitch

As a mechanical stitch it is often defined as a whip stitch or a Merrow Machine Company Crochet Stitch.


The very first sewing machine to sew a blanket stitch was produced and patented by the Merrow Machine Company in 1877. The defining characteristic of the crochet machine is its ability to sew with yarn and stitch thick goods with a consistent overlock edge. From 1877-1925 the machine evolved dramatically, and consequently so did the capacity of manufacturers to produce goods with the whip stitch.

In the early 1990s Chinese manufacturers copied the design of the original crochet sewing machines.

Intellectual Property

The Merrow Sewing Machine Company retains a patent on the mechanism that creates the blanket stitch. The Crochet Sewing Machine has been modified hundreds of times since its introduction in 1877.

In 2007 Merrow renewed the patent for the whip stitch and is currently involved in litigation with several Chinese firms who are accused of violating Merrow's intellectual property rights.


There are many styles of production blanket stitching. Some rolled, narrow, with elastic, and traditional.

The blanket stitch is commonly used as a decorative stitch on an array of garments; beyond blankets to sweaters, outerwear, swimsuits, home furnishings, and much more. The blanket stitch is a name which has come to describe the application of the stitch rather than its actual use.

Types of Blanket Stitching

Rolled Narrow Traditional

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