Create Stitch holes using Inkscape


Can anybody help point me in the right direction as to how to create a row of stitch holes using Inkscape. Many thanks in advance.


If it were me I’d make a dashed path with the correct stroke and end cap styles to make the individual dashes into the shape you want. Then you can convert dashes to miniature paths of their own, convert stroke to path, and you’re off.

Further reading:


@evansd2’s suggestion is a pretty good option. Unfortunately, you are limited to inkscapes predefined patterns.

The following method is more complex but it gives you total control.

  1. Create the path for your stitching holes. If you use an object (square, circle, start, etc.) make sure you convert it to a path after creating it.
  2. Create a path in the shape of your stitch hole. Once again if use a circle object make sure you convert it to a path.
  3. Place the stitch hole at the start of your stitch path or a corner of your stitch path if the path is a closed loop.
  4. Select the hole and the path the hole will follow. Note: the extension used in the next step assumes the top most entity is the object being repeated.
  5. Use the Pattern Along Path… extension (Extensions -> Generate From Path -> Pattern Along Path…) to make the stitch hole repeat along the path.
  6. Use the settings in the screen grab below.

I’m not sure what system of measurement is being used for the space between copies, but 20.6 appears to be roughly 1 inch.

The resulting pattern will be one item. If you want to tweak the placement of certain holes, you’ll have to use Path->Break Apart (Ctrl + Shift + K) to separate the holes into individual items.


The run of holes are a complex object but you can use the ui to space the the holes in terms of number of diameters apart each one is. After you Boolean the holes offset can make them less than a pixel each which will make a hole the size of the laser beam if that is what you want.


@rbtdanforth, are you referring to the run of holes created by the pattern along path extension or the by using the stroke style?

In either case can you give an example, I’m not quite following.


I discovered the issue as a problem actually when I offset designs that closed off certain areas. the areas would appear to be clean but there would still be one or more nodes smaller than a pixel that when cut would get a hole the size of the laser beam. Depending on what you have done they can even be beyond the work area.

It occured to me at that time that as laying out holes for sewing what was a bad thing could be a good thing as it would make a minimal hole. This would be true no matter how you came by the series of holes providing that they were individual paths in a larger object.


This is what I want to do but control the spacing between each hole and he diameter of the hole. I don’t want to etch it out. I want it to be a cut. Hopefully this make a bit more sense than my basic description before. Thank you for help and support with this


My dashed lines solution should work nicely, as would the pattern to path. I think you have all of the building blocks you need, now you just have to experiment a bit. That’s the fun part :slight_smile:


Create the shape of your hole in Inkscape. If you want a circle for the stitch hole, use the create circles tool to make a circle. Then use the Transform tab or just use the W and H boxes in the toolbar to make it the size you want. This is how you control the diameter of the hole. The glowforge will cut out the circle, not etch it out.

Then use the Pattern Along Path extension. The spacing of the holes is determined by the value in Space between copies. You’ll need to experiment with it, but this is how you control spacing between holes.

Note that you may need to adjust things manually at the ends of your path, but that is only two holes.


Thanks for your input. I will give this a go as well.