Shell Chain Stitch Tutorial

Shell Chain Stitch Tutorial

Shell Chain is a member of the chain stitch family and a form of double chain stitch which is a lot of fun to do. Below is a freeform sample worked in a variety threads including satin ribbon and hand knitting yarn! The ribbon is about 1/4 of an inch wide. The fabric I worked it on 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.

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!

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 7

I have a beaded version of this stitch too! Check it out here

Thread Twisties!

threads
Experimenting with different threads can be expensive. You would normally have to buy a whole skein of each type of thread. My thread twisties are a combination of different threads to use in creative hand embroidery. These enable you to try out stitching with something other than stranded cotton. For the price of just a few skeins, you can experiment with a bundle of threads of luscious colours and many different textures.

These are creative embroiders threads. With them, I hope to encourage you to experiment. Each Twistie is a thread bundle containing silk, cotton, rayon and wool. Threads range from extra fine (the same thickness as 1 strand of embroidery floss) to chunky couchable textured yarns. All threads have a soft and manageable drape. Twisting them around a needle makes experimental hand embroidery an interesting journey rather than a battle.  Many are hand dyed by me. All are threads I use. You may find a similar thread twist but no two are identical.

You will find my thread twisties in the Pintangle shop here.

21 Comments

  1. Hi Sharon, I love this stitch and the possibilities. I don’t have a blog but I will share this stitch with my CQ buddies at our next meeting. Thanks for the inspiration! Cindi

    Cindi
  2. A very beautiful stitch. I have seen in before in Totsuka Embroidery Stitch Book #3, but it has no name. It is simply called ‘Chain stitch variation no 13’ and described as a combination of Chain stitch and Open chain stitch. It is so nice to have a name to a stitch. It will be fun to work!

  3. Hi please, excuse my english which is not perfect, but,
    merci Sharon pour ces quatre nouveaux points.
    très faciles et sensasionnels.
    The “Bead link chain stitch” is complitly different with long bead than ordinary ones.
    and i receive two mails each day: one at twenty one on monday in France and the same at seven on tueday-in France. Is it normal?
    l’essentiel est de les recevoir!
    Merci encore
    A mardi
    Anna

    Volkstein A
    1. Anna it sounds like you have subscribed to the email twice. At the bottom of the-mail will be a cancellation for the subscription. It will read
      “You are subscribed to email updates from Pin Tangle
      To stop receiving these emails, you may unsubscribe now.”
      Click the unsubscribe link and unsubscribe from one of them.

      sharonb

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