Take a stitch Tuesday week 16

milliners needlesThis week the challenge stitch is French knots. This stitch is one that some people find difficult but I have a tip or two.

If your knot pops through the fabric, you are not leaving a large enough gap where the thread emerges from the fabric and where it goes back into the fabric. When you follow the directions for French knots that I have published here in step 2 make sure you take the needle back into the fabric a couple of threads away from where it came out. Dont put it back into the same hole.

Second tip is to use milliners needles as they are the secret weapon in creating not only French knots but Bullions too. I have the image here hoping that people take notice of this tip.

Any of the knotted stitches are best worked with milliners needles or straw needles because most embroidery needles have an eye that is wider than the shaft of the needle. Milliners or straw needles have an eye and shaft that are the same width which makes sliding the wrapped bullion or French knot along the needle easy. I hope these two tips lead to pleasant stitching experiences!

French Knot sample

Once again the challenge is:

For new hands to learn the stitch


If you are an experienced stitcher take the stitch and push it a little further in a creative manner or combine this stitch with one of the stitches already covered in TAST 2012. If you have worked a sample in a previous challenge feel free to post a link in comments as it will inspire people but if you have time do try another sample and do something different and new!

French Knot sample

How to join in

Stitch a sample,  take a photograph of it, put in online in your blog, flickr site or on Stitchin Fingers page, swing by here and leave a comment with your full web address so people can visit and see your sample.

French Knot sample

Any special rules?

There are no rules but I do have a request, please link back here.

Interesting work will be featured

Each week I will feature samples that participants have stitched order to draw attention to creative and interesting work. This means some work will be re-published. I will credit and link to the owners website but I assume that when you leave your link here, I have your permission to feature your work. If you do not want your work to be featured please say in the comment, you leave and I wont include it.

Further information

If you need further information on the challenge a list of stitches covered so far or directions on how to participate please visit the TAST FAQ page.

You can read back through TAST articles by browsing Challenges –  Take a Stitch Tuesday category

Other groups and networks

You can also share your explorations with other members on the social network site of your choice. There is a Facebook TAST 2012 page,   stitchin fingers group and the flickr TAST site. All these sub groups are set up at request of members.

French Knot sample

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96 Responses to Take a stitch Tuesday week 16

  1. iHanna says:

    Oh how fun Sharon, a great stitch for this glorious week. It’s time consuming but rather fun to sew!

  2. Joyce says:

    I love french knots and find them easy to do, but then Mom taught me decades ago! I had already done them on this area of a crazy quilt block. I was behind on the stem stitch and there is a french knot on the bird I embroidered for it, but there are more french knots on the crazy patch.

    This week I have a lot to do to get ready for a trip, so glad you picked a stitch I already had done! : – )

  3. Shami Immanuel says:


    My trial for this week’s challenge is here. I enjoyed doing french knots. When I learned I struggled but after a couple of times it was fun doing it. The link is
    Hope my strawberry will be yummy.

  4. Angela says:

    Again, I love you samples Sharon! So gorgeous! You can see what I did at http://princessbubblescreates.blogspot.ca/
    Someone once told me that there is no point in learning to do a french knot, that’s what beads are for. Well, I disagree. As much as I love beads I think there is always room for french knots!

  5. Urist says:

    Excellent! I love french knots.

  6. Annet says:

    My favourite stitch! The perfect stitch to finish my week 13 sampler.

    Here’s my weekly post with old samples:

  7. It’s a ‘more from the archives’ post, but it’s ready to see:
    In the meantime, I’m working on my sampler…

  8. Cyndi L says:

    I’ve had a few “off” weeks, but I’m back in the saddle now! I love French knots, and I found several spots on my quilt that needed them :-)

  9. Luiz Vaz says:

    My first post of the week: details of a recent work still in progress. I wish you all a very nice week and nice sitiches. Sharon, once again, thanks for all!

  10. HI,
    I have not done any new projects but shared pictures of some old projects..

  11. ValerieL says:

    Here is my French knot sampler. I enjoyed this one.

  12. Debbie says:

    My all time favorite stitch, Sharon! Here’s my blog post: http://debbiesfiberwork.blogspot.com/2012/04/tast-week-16.html

  13. Pippa says:

    Hi Sharon
    So pleased you have chosen French Knots as I wanted to share with everyone some of my relatives work. I think my grandmother did these, but cannot be sure of exactly who did. These pieces are done on silk with single thread.
    I will have a go myself this week and post again.
    My blog
    Thank you Sharon for this chance to show some wonderful work and ideas.

  14. Wendy says:

    I like French knots, but I like Colonial knots better – for one reason they are so much easier!

  15. konnykards says:

    I previously stitched a small piece on a fabric print of a Springtime photo taken in our local park.
    I was disappointed to see that the French Knots were
    quite open and had tails – but in that piece they were OK, as opening buds! So – a happy accident.
    However I do have a lovely embroidery with many, many, French knots. I have no idea who stitched it – it was bought by my late Aunt in a house sale about seventy years ago,
    I have recently come home from hospital and need to catch up on three TAST weeks – hopefully soon. Connie.

  16. Thank you for the tips! I always had problems passing the needle through the knot, but with a “straw” needle it was easy! :)

  17. Luiz Vaz says:

    My first post to week. Detais of a recently work still in progress…

  18. Diane says:


    Love French knots. Can’t stitch more than an hour without putting in one or two just because.

  19. Anneliese says:

    I “knotted” two afternoons – the print came from my stash of little treasures.

  20. Anna says:

    I have never used this stitch, but I really loved it and enjoyed it!

  21. Gail R says:

    I love french knots!! Here’s my version of hycinth flowers with french knots. http://www.flickr.com/photos/55086543@N02/5178195647/in/photostream

  22. Gail R says:

    Here’s a better picture of the seam treatment. http://www.flickr.com/photos/55086543@N02/5178195647/in/photostream

  23. Annet says:

    Today I wrote about the French knots and other TAST stitches on my crazy fabric book page:

  24. Lorraine says:

    French knots are one of my favourite stitches and I tend to design with them alot! Althought I’ve not been keeping up weekly, I am working behind the scenes. Thanks Sharon!

  25. christine says:

    It’s a nice stitch! You can see it on my blog
    Have a nice week-end!!!

  26. Mariainez L. Ribeiro dos Santos says:

    My work for this week´s challenge is here.
    I enjoyed to do this!!!!!
    Have a nice day.

  27. Mariainez L. Ribeiro dos Santos says:

    I stitch this for my daugther,40 years ago.

  28. Michelle r says:

    I always wondered why my french knots looked alittle different, and why I had trouble with bouillion stitch. The needle? How simple…

  29. margb says:

    Sharon, I think I love French knots and hope I have improved since that first Sumptuous Surfaces piece – my knot picture (not quite finished) is on my blog – http://www.maggies-textiles.blogspot.com

  30. ashavinod says:


  31. ashavinod says:

    Here is my french knot butterfly

  32. I love embroidery and your blog has been great inspiration. This is a new blog and my first post, just wanted to be part of this wonderful experience and also learn more about hand embroidery . Here is my small work with french knots http://embroiderandsew.blogspot.com/2012/04/tast-week-16-french-knot.html

  33. Hi Sharon, this is my sample for week 16………….
    you can find it here……………

    chris richards

  34. Christina says:

    http://christinaroland.blogspot.com/2012/04/tast-week-16.html My attempt at the french knot. A bit late this week for lack of time, and small for the same reason. Like the stitch, one of few I’ve practiced before.

  35. I just posted my TAST tag with the French Knot. I hope you will visit and let me know what you think. Here is my link:
    http://ceoriginals. blogspot.com/2012/04/french-knots-for-tast.html

  36. I love this stitch! It’s so versatile and I would spend al ot longer exploring if I could :)
    Anyway, here’s my sample

  37. I don’t know if the comment registered, so, at the risk of repeating myself – It’s here :)

  38. libbyQ says:

    i feel better about this stitch thanks to the tips.

    i managed to create a fat little bumble bee~!



  39. Carol Harper says:

    A little study in knots… mixed in with stem stitch and detached chain.

  40. Carol Harper says:

    a little study in knots

  41. I’m not getting a moderating message and it doesn’t look like my posts are coming through so, if this is the third time, apologies…
    here is my little study in French Knots… http://thatyankstitches.multiply.com/journal/item/302/Take_A_Stitch_Tuesday_2012_Challenge_-_Week_16

  42. Beth B says:

    French knots–one of my favorites! I did a little experimenting with different threads and yarns.

  43. Iris Lins says:

    I was finishing my pebble embroidery adding many french knots. french knots are cute!

  44. Isabelle says:

    French knot is not my favorit stitch, but I propose a little exercise :


  45. Iris Lins says:

    I’ve finished my pebble embroidery doing many french knots. They are excellent for filling spaces.
    Hope you like. Iris Lins

  46. Ann says:

    I enjoyed doing French knots this week. I did the French knots on both the linen and two different types of lace on this sampler:


    It’s included in my TAST embroidery journal along with a journal entry, gratitude list, and images reflective of things I saw this week.

  47. Nat says:

    Unfinished sample, but I probably never will, I was being unrealistic when I designed it! Oh well, rock and roll! Week 16 TAST

  48. jacqui boyd says:

    Finally got around to posting my progress on my blog – http://jacquiboydalden.blogspot.com/ . Have been keeping up with everyone’s work via this site and Facebook. Some pretty amazing stuff.

  49. Dear Sharon, doing a design with a Frenchknot is new to me.
    However I tried it out. But i think the result is not that perfect. O.K. Let me try again.
    Now see my work at my blog and i will be back with some more designs in improved version.
    Thankyou Sharon it is very interesting to participate in tast.

  50. Severine Allais says:

    Thanks Sharon for highlight my work this week. My tast week 16 is post here:
    http://stitchinfingers.ning.com/photo/tast-week-16-french-knot-1?context=user and here:

  51. Jane says:

    So many lovely samples of stitching here, pleased to be part of it.

  52. French knot flowers with embroidery floss. I used the stem stitch trellis from last week. I got the idea for these flowers from Mary Corbet’s Needle n Thread blog. Enjoy! http://quiltisland.blogspot.com/2012/04/forsythia-and-flowers.html

  53. maneki says:

    I did my first ever ribbon embroidery flowers this week, using french knots. Have been meaning to try it for ages after having seen some cute ribbon roses and now it finally happened. You can now see my silk ribbon and novelty yarn knots here: http://wildrosesandblackberries.blogspot.com/2012/04/tast-week-16-french-knot.html

    Hope you like it!

  54. Jeannette says:

    Thank you Sharon for suggesting using milliner needles for working french knots. A great tip. Made a butterfly with 497 french knots: http://jennypennypoppy.blogspot.ca/

  55. Julie says:

    I think I posted my french knot piece on last weeks TAST by accident…but here it is:

    Thanks, Julie

  56. Lisa says:

    My week 16 sample is at http://stitchinfingers.ning.com/photo/frenchknotteapot?context=latest. I am enjoying this challenge because it forces me to do a new sample each week. Not always easy, but rewarding.

  57. Maureen Bond says:

    I’ve posted work for Stem, Satin and French knots at
    I like French knots.

  58. I looked at a range of Knots from different countries, including French and had a great time researching them all.

    I have posted to my blog : htttp://www.carorose.typepad.com
    and the Flikr group:

  59. Gayle S. says:

    French knot? Knot garden? Ah…French Knot Garden!!!!

    See it at http://www.flickr.com/photos/stitchintime

    Gayle Schipper

  60. Pippa says:

    My attempts at French Knots. Not a patch on my Grandmothers.

  61. Hello Sharon ,
    I like embrodering french knots .This is my work for this week :http://foliesdesandrine.canalblog.com
    Good week end

  62. Rose says:

    Started working on my French Knots but only got the outline done.
    Here is another one of my French Knot designs

  63. Arlene says:

    Here’s my post on French knots. It took me a lot of practice in years past to “get” this stitch. I now use it regularly and enjoy combining it with other stitches.


  64. shirley says:

    Life got in the way this week, so here is the sample of French knots that I have just finished.


  65. Dianne says:

    My french knots piece looked a little like an eye, so I have called it “The Look’. The french knots are supplemented with beads and sequins. You may view it here:

  66. Karrin Hurd says:

    This is my example of French Knots.

  67. I’m a bit late this week as I had a nightmare with one of my threads. I got there in the end though :) http://kirajones.co.uk/?p=733

  68. Annet says:

    I don’t know how many French knots I made this week, but I used a complete skein of stranded floss to finish my week 13 sampler. I wrote about it here:

  69. Here’s my sampler with french knots and some other stitches: http://stitchinfingers.ning.com/photo/frenchknots

  70. Iris Lins says:

    I did many french knots finishing my pebble.

  71. Lynda J, says:

    I have posted my french knots at http://meanderingwithmymuse.blogspot.com/. Thank you for looking.

  72. vero says:

    coucou sharon j’ai fini mon point qui est visible sur mon blog

  73. After a trip to Denmark, Germany and the Netherland´s, intensive finishing week of my embroidery class in Stockholm and a long weekend in the countryside I am definitely behind. But I will do my best to catch up. I start with French knots as I have done a lot of knots this spring. See my blog at http://ullabritt.wordpress.com/tast-2012/16-french-knots/

  74. Julie says:

    I finally finished my french knots, tedius little devils! Maybe not as bad if you only do a few here and there. If you look at my sample which in the blog post titled “It began on I-65″ you’ll see why I don’t love french knots today!