Stitches 106 and 107 Looped Cretan and Beaded Looped Cretan

Beaded Looped Cretan stitch sampleThis week I have 2 stitches to share. The first is an interesting version of Cretan stitch that I discovered in an old embroidery book by Edith John titled Creative Stitches.

It is called Looped Cretan and the second stitch this week is my adaption which includes adding a bead. It is really useful to know the foundation stitch which is of course Cretan stitch. Both samples are worked using a cotton perle #5 thread. Once again in the beaded version the beading is not done afterwards but during the stitching process.

Tip! Use a size 26 tapestry needle. Since the eye of a tapestry needle is long you can thread perle #8 and perle #5 through the long eye. However the needle itself is thin which means you can add a bead to your working thread as you stitch.  This choice of needle is key to success with this type of beaded embroidery.

How to work Looped Cretan Stitch 

Work from top to bottom between 2 imaginary lines.

Looped Cretan stitch 1Bring the needle through the fabric at the start of the line on the top left side. Move across the line and insert your needle on the right edge. With your needle angled and pointing towards the center of the line make a small stitch.

Looped Cretan stitch 2Keeping the thread under the needle as illustrated pull it through your fabric. It should look like a shallow unsecured fly stitch.

Looped Cretan stitch 3Insert your needle on the right edge in the same place, as illustrated. Angle your needle downward as illustrated and make a small stitch.

Looped Cretan stitch 4Keeping the thread under the needle as illustrated pull it through your fabric to create a loop. This loop is like adding one buttonhole stitch. It is also this extra loop on the Cretan stitch that gives this stitch its name.

Looped Cretan stitch 5Move across the line and insert your needle on the left edge. With your needle angled as illustrated and pointing towards the center of the line, make a small stitch. (As you would for regular Cretan stitch)

Looped Cretan stitch 6Keeping the thread under the needle as illustrated pull it through your fabric.

Looped Cretan stitch 7Insert your needle on the left edge in the same place, as illustrated. Angle your needle downward and pointing towards the center of the line make a small stitch.   Keeping the thread under the needle as illustrated pull it through your fabric to create a loop.

Looped Cretan stitch 8

Looped Cretan stitch 9Move across to the right and repeat this process. Continue working downward, back and forth until the line is worked.

As you can see this is a decorative and interesting stitch  and would be useful working in trailing lines as part of a floral motif.

Like Cretan you can work Looped Cretan stitch close together to form a very different patten in the movement of the stitch. You can vary the length of the wings or the angle of the wings to creat interesting effects. You can increase the width of the wing , then return to the established line  to created an alternating pattern of wider wings.

You can work this Looped Cretan stitch in a circle to create other organic like forms.

It is very verstaile and I hope readers enjoy experimenting with it.

How to work Beaded Looped Cretan Stitch 

You work this stitch using the same method as Looped Cretan stitch but add a bead to your working thread. I have added a bead after each loop is created but you can add beads at any of the steps and each creates a different pattern.

Use a size 26 tapestry needle as this type of needle is thin enough to take the bead yet the ye is large enough to take perle #8 or perle #5 thread.

Beaded Looped Cretan stitch  1Work from top to bottom between 2 imaginary lines.

Bring the needle through the fabric at the start of the line on the top left side. Move across the line and insert your needle on the right edge. With your needle angled and pointing towards the center of the line make a small stitch.  Keeping the thread under the needle as illustrated pull it through your fabric.

Beaded Looped Cretan stitch  2

Insert your needle on the right edge in the same place, as you did at the first step, as illustrated. Angle your needle downward as illustrated and make a small stitch.   Keeping the thread under the needle as illustrated pull it through your fabric to create a loop.

Beaded Looped Cretan stitch 3Add a bead to your work thread and tuck it up against the last stitch.

Beaded Looped Cretan stitch 4Move across the line and insert your needle on the left edge. With your needle angled as illustrated and pointing towards the center of the line make a small stitch.  Keeping the thread under the needle pull it through your fabric.

Beaded Looped Cretan stitch 5Insert your needle on the left edge in the same place, as illustrated. Angle your needle downward and pointing towards the center of the line make a small stitch.

Beaded Looped Cretan stitch 6Keeping the thread under the needle as illustrated pull it through your fabric to create a loop.

Beaded Looped Cretan stitch 7Add a bead to your work thread and tuck it up against the last stitch.

Beaded Looped Cretan stitch 8Move across to the right and repeat this process. Continue working downward, back and forth until the line is worked.

Like it? Join in!

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

You can also share your explorations on the  Facebook TAST group, and the flickr TAST site. All these sub groups are set up at request of members

Don’t want to miss our on any of the TAST stitches this year?

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.


TAST 104 and 105 Buttonholed Cable Chain and Alternating Buttonholed Cable Chain

I have 2 TAST stitches this week which I hope people will enjoy. Next week I will have a break week so folks done fell they are on overload.

Both stitches this week are a variety of Cable Chain stitch.

Buttonholed cable chain sample

Cable Chain stitch was a TAST Stitch in Week 25. Cable chain differs slightly from regular chain stitch as Cable chain has an extra bar worked between each chain stitch. (Follow the link if you need a little reminder of how to work it) When you buttonhole this stitch it becomes something quite different.

When you first learn this stitch use a thread with a firm twist. When mastered experiment with other threads.The example is worked in Perle #5 thread. I worked each journey in different colours so readers could see what was happening.

Buttonholed cable chain  1Work a row of Cable Chain stitch. The chain stitches in this row acts as  a foundation.

For the second journey work from left to right and bring the needle up through the fabric on the bottom the left hand side.

Slip your needle under the thread of the first chain stitch as illustrated. Loop the thread under the needle point and pull the needle through to make the first buttonhole stitch

Buttonholed cable chain 2Work a buttonhole stitch on the side of the chain stitch being careful not pass the needle through the foundation fabric. Add more buttonhole stitches.

As you work slide the stitches long the bar so that the finished stitches are spaced closely together.

Buttonholed cable chain  3When you reach the end of the foundation stitch move to the next chain skipping the bar between. The bar acts to divide each loop neatly but does not need to be buttonholed.

Buttonholed cable chain  4When you reach the end of the row turn your work and buttonhole the other side of the cable chain foundation.

Buttonholed cable chain  5Alternating Buttonholed Cable Chain Stitch

Alternating Buttonholed Cable chain stitch is a variety of Buttonholed Cable Chain you start with a foundation row of Cable Chain stitch.

Alternating Buttonholed cable chain  1

On the second journey work buttonhole stitches on the side of the chain stitch being careful not pass the needle through the foundation fabric. As you add more buttonhole stitches slide the stitches long the bar so that the finished stitches are spaced closely together.

When you reach the end of the foundation chain stitch slide your needle under the bar between the chain stitches and work buttonhole stitches on the other side of the next chain stitch. Work like this along line, buttonholing first one side of the chain stitch then on the next foundation stitch work the other side.

Alternating Buttonholed cable chain  2It is a fun stitch to work and I can see lots of applications for it.

Alternating Buttonholed cable chain  3

Like it? Join in!

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

You can also share your explorations on the  Facebook TAST group, and the flickr TAST site. All these sub groups are set up at request of members

Don’t want to miss our on any of the TAST stitches this year?

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.

Take a Stitch Tuesday 103 Beaded Butterfly chain stitch

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 step 1Butterfly chain is worked a foundation of three vertical straight stitches arranged in blocks along a line.

butterfly chain step 2On 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.

butterfly chain step 3Before 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

butterfly chain step 1On 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.

Beaded butterfly chain step 2Tension the twisted chain stitch then thread a bead on to the working thread.

Beaded butterfly chain step 3Pass 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.

Butterfly chain sample Also here are few samples to give an idea of what can be done with butterfly chain.

Butterfly chain sample Adding beads would enhance any of these samples.

Butterfly chain sample 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

You can also share your explorations on the  Facebook TAST group, and the flickr TAST site. All these sub groups are set up at request of members

Don’t want to miss our on any of the TAST stitches this year?

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.


Take a Stitch Tuesday 97 Shell chain and 98 Beaded shell chain stitch

Readers will be pleased to know I have another 2 stitches this week. I discovered Shell chain in Edith John’s Creative stitches (p.43) It is a member of the chain stitch family and a form of double chain stitch.

shell chain stitch sampleShell chain stitch can be easily worked in a circle or on a curve and you can emphasise the effect by angling the needle further left or right. It is a fun and interesting linear stitch which is effective as an edging stitch too,  but if you layer it you build up some very interesting textures with it too!

The sample above is a mix of shell chain and wave chain. Most of it is worked in knitting yarns! The ribbon is about 1/4 of an inch wide. The fabric is 25 cnt linen. A weave of this count  has quite a bit of give which enable me to get a thick tapestry needle and thread through it with out having to tug, pull and carry on.

How to work Shell chain stitch

Begin with a small chain stitch.

shell chain stitch step 1Insert your needle to the right of the first chain stitch.

shell chain stitch step 2Bring the needle up through the fabric to the left side of the line as illustrated. Wrap the thread under the needle point and pull the needle through the fabric.

shell chain stitch step 3This forms the first shell chain stitch.

shell chain stitch 4To continue down the line, make a chain stitch emerging from the last chain loop. Insert your needle into the left side of the loop as illustrated.

Bring the point of the needle up through the fabric as illustrated. With the thread wrapped under the needle point pull the needle through the fabric.

shell chain stitch 5Bring the point of the needle up through the fabric further down and to the right of the line, as illustrated. With the thread wrapped under the needle point pull the needle through the fabric.

shell chain stitch 6Work this way along the line.

shell chain stitch 7How to work Beaded Shell chain stitch

Now the Sharon B beaded version!

To work this stitch use a size 26 tapestry needle. Since the eye of a tapestry needle is long you can thread cotton perle #8 and cotton Perle #5 through the long eye. However, the needle itself is thin, which means you can add a bead to your working thread as you stitch. The Beading is NOT done afterwards but during the stitching process.

beaded shell chain stitch 1You commence the beaded version of this stitch the same way you start to regular version with a small chain stitch.

beaded shell chain stitch 2Thread a bead on your working thread. As with regular shell chain insert your needle to the right of the first chain stitch. Bring the needle up through the fabric to the left side of the line, as illustrated. Wrap the thread under the needle point and pull the needle through the fabric.

bead-double-chain-shell-4This forms the first beaded shell chain stitch.

To continue down the line, adding beads as you go.

beaded shell chain stitch 4You can vary the number of beads and create patterns in the beading by skipping beads.

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 want to share the technique with friends do so but please link to Pintangle.com

You can also share your explorations on the  Facebook TAST group, and the flickr TAST site. All these sub groups are set up at request of members

Don’t want to miss our on any of the TAST stitches this year?

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.