Sunday, 10 June 2018

Sunday Stitch School - Lesson 64: Madam Totsuka's Tasselled Chain Stitch

For today's lesson at Sunday Stitch School we'll be focusing on a stitch in Madam Totsuka's embroidery book #12, which is on Loop Stitch and its variations.

Sadako Totsuka of Totsuka Stitch Institute has published many books on embroidery. Although all of them are written in Japanese, they are clearly illustrated. You don't need to read any instructions, looking is enough.

Now for the stitch. There is no name in the book, but the stitch resembles a loopy tassel so let's call it Madam Totsuka's Tasselled Chain Stitch.

It is made up of a Detached Chain Stitch, three loops and two Straight Stitches.

Begin by stretching the fabric in a hoop.
Make a Detached Chain Stitch (Lazy Daisy Stitch).

Anchor the stitch with a tiny stitch, 

then make a loose loop, over and under the bottom of the Chain Stitch.

Repeat and make a second loop,

and a third.
Then make a tight Straight Stitch,

across the loops at the bottom of the Chain Stitch.

Repeat with one more Straight Stitch,
and you have a tassel.

Each Chain has three loops.

The loops can of course be cut open, but in Madam Totsuka's book the loops are not cut.

Beware that this stitch is a fiddly stitch, and almost impossible to undo, so pay attention while working!

Here is a TIP:
Use a pin to wind the loops around and you will effortlessly get nice even loops.

SSS Reference Chart
Aida Sampler
Teal Tailoring Wool Scribble Cloth


  1. That's a tricky one isn't it?
    I think they look like flying insects, little bugs.
    Using different colors you could make up a swarm!

    1. It is a fiddly little stitch but it gets easier the more stitches you make.
      It certainly looks like an insect, or a flower.

  2. A very cute stitch! It looks like a yuki mushi in the white thread.

    1. I agree that this stitch could be used for an insect, and of course, flowers!

  3. J'adore ce nouveau point
    il n’y pas de nom français (encore)
    Je le traduirais par :
    - point de chainette avec triple point de bouclette

    1. A translation of Matttia's comment:
      I love this new point
      there is no French name (yet)
      I would translate it by:
      - chain stitch with triple loop stitch

      Your name is very descriptive!

  4. What lovely little tassels! Fiddly, yes, but in the right place, perfect!

    1. Aren't they charming? Great for accents, flowers or insects.

  5. Now this is something different.

  6. They are very cute stitches but a bit to fiddly for me to do even with the fab instructions.

    1. This stitch takes some time to get used to or make friends with! I think it is great for small details, but I wouldn't use it as a filling stitch!!!

  7. Thanks! I saw it on Maureen's blog, sort of in a row, and like it, so I'm going to give it a try on my next block.


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