Take a Stitch Tuesday

Ok after 2 weeks of rather complex stitches I have decided to introduce a fun light hearted stitch that children love. It is called Checkered or Magic Chain as it changes colour. With the holiday season nearly upon us I can see this as useful on decorations and small gifts too. I discovered it in The Stitches of Creative Embroidery by Jacqueline Enthoven (p 132)

The sample is worked in two threads of perle #5.

Thread your needle with two contrasting colours make sure both are the same length. Start the line as you would ordinary chain stitch but loop only one of the threads under the needle.

tutorial of magic chain or checkered chain stitch step 1

Making sure the tension is the same on both threads pull the thread through.

Make the next chain stitch but use the contrasting thread.

tutorial of magic chain or checkered chain stitch step 2

Continue in this manner alternating the two colours.

tutorial of magic chain or checkered chain stitch step 3

As you can see this is a fun stitch!

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!

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.

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 link to interesting samples that participants have stitched order to draw attention to how the stitch is used.

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

Tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

35 Responses to Take a Stitch Tuesday

  1. chitra gangadharan says:

    Hi Sharon,
    I worked this stitch on a design. the details are here-
    Thank you,

  2. libbyQ says:

    i had fun with this stitch and managed to work it into my christmas stocking project as well as another piece.



  3. Lilian says:

    I loved this stitch, it made me smile! I’ve gone in search of a logo this week:

  4. Nancilyn says:

    Fun stitch but one I’d probably use infrequently because of the constant fussing which made me nervous and my fingers feel like sausages. I ripped out frequently, lost patience and became frustrated with my too often sloppy results. On the plus side I did work with 4 threads.

  5. Barbara/Hopscotch says:

    With Jack Frost just around the corner I thought those of us in the UK could do with a smile :)
    Here’s my Mgaic chain stitch sample.



  6. Luiz Vaz says:

    Hi Sharon & Friends, my post:
    Thank you all!

  7. Laurel says:

    Sharon, my current project “Enchanted Forest” was a great venue to include this week’s stitch. You can see it here:
    And detail here:

  8. Claudia says:

    Was a funny stitch but a little bit challenging for me with two metallic threads in the needle.
    Here is my attempt:. http://fabricfusion.blogspot.co.at/2012/11/tast-week-46.html

  9. Debbie says:

    Here is my sample for the Majic Chain:
    Also for the Open Base Needlewoven Picot (late, I know…):

  10. JustGail says:

    I’m not a TAST participant, but I do stop by and see what’s up. I’m always amazed to see the different directions a single stitch can take with all the stitchers.

    I’ve seen (OK, I bought) a double eye needle. The catalogs showed it next to something similar to this stitch. Is that needle’s purpose to make this stitch easier somehow? I’ve never tried the needle yet, so I’m just wondering if it’s a solution in search of a problem or if it does magical things.

    • sharonb says:

      I cant see how a double eye needle would make this any easier. You can use a double eye needle to mix two threads together (and you can do the same thing by threading the two together in the eye) but with this stitch one thread stays at the back of the fabric. I have never tried using one for this stitch I will have to try but I cant really see an advantage- I could be wrong however.

  11. This is one of my favourite stitches, and I have used it a lot in the past so I thought I’d make something special this time:


  12. Marjolein says:

    Hi Sharon,
    Back in January I used this stitch with two slightly different shades of green. It was hard to see the difference.
    Here it is: http://threads-and-patches.blogspot.com/2012/01/crazy-pink-first-leave-finished.html
    I also did another catch up stitch: the pekinese stitch:

  13. isabelle says:

    I think the stitch of this week is more difficult than it looks, but it is funny.

  14. Bernice Odom says:

    What a neat stitch….after I got used to doing it. See mine at

  15. Shami Immanuel says:

    I enjoyed this weeks challenge. Here is my small sample.

  16. Carol Harper says:

    Here is mine, forming a stem for my open-based needle-woven picot stitch flower. I used GAST “Harvest Basket” and Forest Glade” as my alternating colors…


    I did try to be creative and use three colors but I had tension issues, with the threads not wanting to cooperate, resulting in a hot mess on both the front and the back of the fabric,  so I ripped that out and settled for just two…

  17. Brigitte Otto says:

    After running behind trying to catch up I finally reached the end of the queue :-) Here’s my little sample of this weeks stitch:
    plus the catchups. Funny how being late influences the thinking.

  18. Debbie says:

    Such a fun stitch this week! Thanks, Sharon. Here’s my sample(s): http://debbiesfiberwork.blogspot.com/2012/11/tast-week-46.html

  19. Dear,
    I am sorry very sorry.
    I missed some of the challenges.
    Due my ill health and eye problem, i was not able to make it attempt.
    I who never fail to try your stitches for the all weeks and never miss to enter other sites to woun der what they had done.
    This is the wounderful site to enjoy hoe stitches are being used inan very imaginatery forms.
    I really used to enjoy.
    But……….. sorry i missed some weeks. But sure will catch soon.
    ai will post this stitch soon because i love todo it.

    • sharonb says:

      No need to say sorry everyone understands is health or a busy life means you cant do it. I am sure you will catch up when you can.

  20. Angela says:

    Wow! Such a cool stitch! I love it! It truly is magic! http://princessbubblescreates.blogspot.ca/

  21. Elisabetta says:

    Hi! I have no time for stitching your wonderfull suggestions, but I follow with pleasure your posts, I learn your tecniques, and I wonder watching the great ideas of your followers!
    Thank for your work!

  22. RMW says:

    I have owned that book for a long time. :-)

  23. kaholly says:

    What a fun stitch! You’re so clever.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *