June 25, 2007

The French Knot

Did I hear a moan? Many of us love the look of the French Knot but have struggled to master this stitch but once you get the hang of it, the possibilities are endless. It is a wonderful stitch for adding a three dimensional look to a pattern that might otherwise appear flat and it is also great for mimicking the natural elements of nature.



Instructions for making for making a French Knot:

1. Bring the thread out at the required position, hold the thread down where it emerges with the left thumb and encircle the thread twice with the needle (see A).

2. Still holding the thread firmly with your thumb, twist the needle back to the starting point and insert it close to where the thread first emerged (not in the exact place or it will simply pull back through).

3. Pull the needle through to the back, leaving a small knot on the surface, as shown, or pass on to the position of the next stitch as at B.

There is also an extremely helpful video tutorial at Needle N' Thread demonstrating how to make the French Knot. Watching the stitch in action will definitely help in making written instructions comprehensible.


The image above comes from the flickr photostream of Stephanie also known for her great blog, ruby-crowned kinglette. It is a beautiful way to highlight the French Knot in a simple and clean design.

Flickr member Tanya, created this adorable knotted sheep. It is a prime example of adding a three dimensional element. Plus you can pet this fuzzy guy!

So grab a piece of scrap fabric and practice the French Knot. Once you get the hang of it, you will be adding it to all of your embroidered designs!

13 comments:

  1. thank you amy, for including my sunflower design in your post...

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  2. French knots are one of my favorite stitches (the others are chain stitch and blanket stitch...) I remember when I used to have trouble and I think I was wrapping the thread around the needle the wrong way.

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  3. Susie, I thought the same thing. Which way do I wrap?

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  4. This is a great tutorial, thanks for such clear directions!

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  5. This was so helpful! I've never been able to figure out this stitch - it always disappears back into the fabric. I'm going to try it now!

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  6. This is my favorite stitch. It took me a long time to be able to make half-way decent ones. Thanks for highlighting it.

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  7. love the french knot. i have done a few pieces of embroidery with some french knots. would love to try an all-french-knot piece...maybe a field of sheep.

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  8. I like doing french knots also. The stitch I have the most trouble with however, is satin stitch. I'm never happy with mine. Do you have any helpful advice on making satin stitches look good?
    Thanks,
    Karen
    joyjoyhappy

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  9. Pull your floss over some wax before trying to do these babies. It makes all the difference!

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  10. nat easy to follow need a video

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  11. Spent ages the other day cursing the French for their knots, I can't follow any written directions, going to try a youtube video.

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  12. Yes! The video on Needle n Thread is officially my saviour. I have struggled for years to learn how to do French Knots, one watch of the video and I no longer have The Fear. I'm ready to French Knot it up all over the place now!

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  13. use one strand of embroidery thread and a size 10 needle. I like a round eye. place each stitch in the hole next to the last one,..keeping the lines perpendicular to the sides of the area. (no slanting.) Ideally you will finish with a very smooth satiny stitch. good luck!

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