TAST week 21 was a butterfly chain stitch but this week I wanted to explore a beaded version of Butterfly chain.
Tip to Note: As for all the beaded stitches I am sharing the main thing is to use a needle you can bead with. Use a size 26 tapestry needle. Since the eye of a tapestry needle is long you can thread perle #8 and Perle #5 however the needle itself is thin which means you can add a bead to your working thread and the needle will pass through the bead. This means you can bead as you stitch, in other words the process of beading becomes part of the stitching, rather than added afterwards. This tip is key to success with this type of beaded embroidery.
I am going to describe butterfly chain then describe the beaded version as I think it is easier to understand if readers see the regular version first
Another tip to remember is that if you have tension problems which result in puckering, work Butterfly chain stitch with the fabric stretched in an embroidery hoop. It really does help.
Butterfly chain is worked a foundation of three vertical straight stitches arranged in blocks along a line.
On the second journey, bring your thread up from the back of the fabric and tie each group of stitches together with a twisted chain stitch.
To tie each block of stitches pass the needle under the three straight stitches (not through the fabric) , and wrap the thread across the needle and then pull the needle through to form a twisted chain.
Before moving on to the next block of straight stitches tension each twisted chain stitch to clutch the group of three foundation straight stitches together. Continue in this manner along the line
On the second journey, do not allow the needle to enter the ground fabric except at the beginning and end of the row.
It is traditional to work a foundation row of three vertical straight stitches but you can vary their scale. For instance, making the middle straight stitch longer that the side two. The thread that you use to clutch the foundation stitches together can be of heavier weight or a different colour. It can also be ribbon of fine cord. There are lots of things you can do with this stitch
To work the beaded version of Butterfly Chain Stitch
Work blocks of three vertical straight stitches as a foundation row
On the second journey bring your thread through from the back of the fabric and pass the needle under the first block of three straight stitches, and wrap the thread across the needle and then pull the needle through to form a twisted chain.
Tension the twisted chain stitch then thread a bead on to the working thread.
Pass the needle under the next three straight stitches, and wrap the thread across the needle and then pull the needle through to form a twisted chain. Continue along the line.
As I say I think it easier to see the two stitches side by side.
Also here are few samples to give an idea of what can be done with butterfly chain.
Adding beads would enhance any of these samples.
Like it? 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. If you are pushed for time and don’t get a chance to do it this week, don’t fret as next week I will also open a post so people can leave their details.
If you want to share the technique with friends do so but please link to Pintangle.com
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