Posted by: maureenc | January 23, 2016

TAST and Twisted Chain stitch

Once again I am endeavouring to keep up with the weekly Take a Stitch Tuesday,  I “plan” (to tackle all the stitches that SharonB shares with her followers, but I know that they won’t be done in the same order that Sharon blogs.

Twisted Chain Stitch (or rope stitch) is listed as Stitch 25 of Take a Stitch Tuesday 2016 . And already in the last day or two, she has added a tutorial on Colonial Stitch which is worked like a figure 8 and is so beloved by stitchers who love doing Candlewicking embroidery.

But I digress…….Tuesday I decided to stitch a sample of twisted chain stitch:

I used #8 perle cotton for the motif that I sketched on my fabric—–just a free hand drawing roughly representing an eye.

Twisted chain stitch

Twisted chain stitch in #8 Perle thread      I was disappointed in that I felt I did not achieve a “rope” effect.

Maybe, if I used  thicker ply threads which had an inbuilt lustre………?

It was time to use some Edmar (rayon) threads.

These threads have become a well loved addition to the stashes of threads employed in Brazilian Dimensional Embroidery, and although at first they can be a little tricky to work with because they have a “Z” twist rather than the
“S” twist found in most  cotton embroidery threads and I also stitch left handed. So  I need to remember when using the Lola thread, which is a heavy weight  three ply thread with a tight twist, that there is a right and a wrong end to sew with!

(I determine this by gently sliding my thumb and forefinger down the thread: if it feels smooth I knot the bottom end and sew with the top end. If it feels rough , I sew with the bottom end  and knot the top end because I want the smooth direction of the thread to glide up through the fabric )

I also prefer to use a Milliner’s needle for most stitches because they do not have a bulging eye and you need for the needle to be able to slide easily on the thread.

So there you have a smidgeon of information about Brazilian threads! Back to that “Twisted Chain stitch”. Because I wasn’t stitching a designated Brazilian dimensional stitch involving Bullion or Cast on, I used a Chenille needle with the Lola thread.

The thicker thread certainly  resulted in a better “line” and the shine of the rayon thread gave a better “body” to the motif.

Split chain stitch Using Edmar Lola

Split chain stitch Using Edmar Lola

And if Mr Picasa keeps co operating with me, the next photo should show a comparison of the two stitched versions. I think you will agree that the second attempt produced a slightly better result than the first.


Now to complete  my version of the Colonial stitch!



  1. Two beautiful motifs, Maureen. Lots of detail and I love the colours. The first one certainly looks like an eye as you said – very realistic 🙂

  2. Thank you Mabel. More stitching “bits” on the way 😉

  3. Beautiful, Maureen, and so interesting to see your two attempts as they look so different from each other.

  4. I like the stitch done in Brazilian thread. Has a lovely finish.
    Maybe keeping the Twisted chains closer when using the first threads would improve the look, if you are unhappy with the result.

  5. Maureen, I think that the gloss and texture of the Lola thread enhance the stitching. Plain cotton looks so uninteresting (lol) The first piece I ever attempted in dimensional stitching was bullion stitched violets (Back then it was impossible to obtain Edmar threads) That cushion looks so DULL compared with other pieces stitched with Edmar Rayon thread.

  6. […] have been attempting to keep up with the weekly TAST assignments, but even those went on the back burner, because I acted much as I’ve done […]


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