7 days of stitches: chain stitch
Number 3 in this series of 7 basic embroidery stitches is the CHAIN STITCH. This stitch can be used as a line stitch or to fill whole areas with embroidery. You can substitute back stitch with chain stitch in most line stitching patterns easily.
Here is how it works
1 // Stick the needle in the same hole where the thread comes out and pull it up at one stitch length. Wrap the thread around the point of the needle and pull the needle out.
2 // Repeat sticking the needle in where your thread comes out, pulling through the fabric from underneath, wrapping the yarn around the needle and pulling the needle out. To secure the last stitch stick the needle behind the loop of the last stitch.
// The chain stitch looks like a slightly twisted back stitch on the back side.
A technique using this stitch as the basic stitch is Zalakdozi (or kashmiri) from India. The outlines and the fillings are done in colorful chain stitches with a hook, instead of a needle. It basically is crocheting on fabric.
Many artists use the chain stitch as a dominant stitch. It’s dual purpose of filling whole areas AND making a clean outline open up a lot of possibilities.
Yumiko Higuchi uses the chain stitch very often in her work. Her delicate pattern work is fascinating to look at.
Izziyana Suhaimi embroidery on watercolor painting
Embroidered world map carpets by Miga de Pan – what a brilliant idea!
Running horses cushion cover by Pumora
Wait, there is more! Here are some great examples of embroidery featuring the CHAIN STITCH curated in a Pinterest board: