Take a Stitch Tuesday Stitch 71 Bullion Buttonhole

milliners needlesNote Next week I am going to take a week off  TAST  as I have a heck of a lot stencil orders to process. In fact I am taking a few days off blogging too in order to get through the back log.

This weeks stitch is a little tricky to work. So take a deep breath be patient and give it a try. I was asked to include bullion feather stitch in TAST. To work bullion feather stitch you need to know bullion buttonhole so this week is it!

I find it an interesting variety of buttonhole as it is a buttonhole stitch with the upright stitches worked as a bullion stitches.

Why do we have a photo of a packet of milliners needles this week? Because these needles are the secret weapon in creating wonderful bullion stitches and I think some readers will need to be reminded of the fact!

People either love or hate bullions, but most of the problems associated with working them is that people use the wrong needle.

I recommend milliners 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 knot along the needle easy.

How to work Bullion Buttonhole

This is a version of buttonhole that has a bullion as the vertical stitch. It makes sense to be familiar with both basic buttonhole stitch and bullion stitch before you embark on this. So if you need a refresher work a few of both stitches on some scrap fabric

Samples worked in DMC perle #5 cotton using a #3 Milliners needle on 26 cnt linen.

bullion buttonhole step 1The same as basic buttonhole is worked from left to right over two imaginary lines bullion buttonhole is also worked from left to right over two imaginary lines.

Bring the thread out on the lower line. Insert the needle on the upper line making a straight downward motion and then loop the thread under the needle point as you would with regular buttonhole.

Wrap your needle 5 or 6 times. Make sure the wraps side side by side. Don’t wrap too tight as that will make it hard to pull your needle through. On the other hand loose wrap will make for a sloppy knot.

Pull your needle through while loosely holding the wraps between your thumb and forefinger. As you pull your needle through the bullion stitch will point towards the top imaginary line.

Some of the wraps may be a little wobbly. Tickle the bullion’s tummy with the point of your needle. Run it  smoothly up an down the underside of the bullion. Do this a couple of times as this will even out wobbly  wraps.

bullion buttonhole step 2Your thread should emerge from the bottom of the bullion. Move along the row, repeating the same stitches.

bullion buttonhole step 3By altering the lengths of the upright bullion stitches this variety of buttonhole can be very decorative

Rows of the stitch can be built up to create patterns.

bullion buttonhole step 4It is an ideal stitch to use as a seam embellishment in crazy quilting as the spines can be further decorated with beads.

Don’t want to miss our on any of the TAST stitches? Why not Subscribe to Pin Tangle by Email and have it delivered to your In Box. Follow the link to sign up you do NOT have to be stitching along to take advantage of this service.

How to join in

It is not complicated. All you need to do is stitch a sample of this stitch or ANY of the stitches listed on the TAST FAQ page.

Once you have worked a sample,  photograph it and put it online at your blog, flickr etc then swing back to the Last TAST post (you will find it under the category each week)   and leave a comment that includes  your web address. When you leave a comment include the http:// part of the address as then your address becomes a link and readers will be able easily visit and see your sample. Remember you can leave a comment about any stitch you have worked as long as it is listed on the TAST FAQ page.

Any special rules?

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

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