Friday, November 16, 2012

Exploring Chain Stitch

Exploring with &Stitches

When I first thought about an exploring-a-stitch themed post, I was mainly thinking of fill stitches - mostly because I really love picking out stitches to fill up spaces! But of course other stitches deserve attention as well and with the help of some photos from our lovely Flickr pool contributors, this week will look at one that's extremely versatile.

Chain stitch is probably my very favorite stitch, there's just something so satisfying about creating those quick, fat lines! It's really great for curves and texture alike and, as we'll see, makes an equally good fill or line stitch.

Because it's quite a thick and tall stitch, chain stitch makes for great solid fill, especially where a bold effect is needed, as in in Olisa's eye-catching "Do Not Flake On Me":

Do Not Flake on Me

Audrey of Het Groene Kamertje has taken advantage of the way chain stitch creates smooth curves and knobbly texture and used a variety of earthy tones to create instantly recognizable tree bark:

felt cuff 'wood' [#5]

And, lastly, Michelle of Pardalote combines all of these qualities in her incredible embroidery of the planet Jupiter. The chain stitch curves and swirls around and has such depth, I just can't help but want to touch it!


And to think, this is just the beginning of what the almighty chain stitch can do! Ok, I'm a little biased, but I do think it's a wonderful stitch. Come back next week when I'll talk about all the chain stitch variations and what makes them special!

Julie is a knitter and stitcher, born in the US but now living in the UK. She loves vintage embroidery books and bad slasher movies. With her mum, Julie designs embroidery patterns inspired by literature under the name Little Dorrit & Co.



  1. Love the leaf piece. We've got lots of leaves right now where I live and I could use that on my front door ~ not leaves here!

  2. Thanks for featuring my cuff :)
    The other pieces are both amazing!

    Liefs, Audrey

  3. I love the tree bark design, such a great choice of colour, I wish my chain stitch was so neat! :)

  4. Wow- the Jupiter close up really does look like something I'd want to touch! What beautiful texture-- and the colors are amazing!


  5. I've just discovered this post! Thanks for featuring my Jupiter piece :-D


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