Secret in Stitch #26

It’s what I call a buttonhole stitch because it’s configuration is what you would use if you were making a handmade buttonhole (not to be confused with a machine-made buttonhole). If your machine has an array of decorative stitches (not to be confused with utility stitches), this one is bound to be part of it.


My goal in this project was to attach a bias-strip facing to the asymmetrical, wrapped neckline, but with the facing turned to the right side.  Instead of a straight stitch to sew down the facing edge, I considered hand sewing to give it a finer look.  Then, stitch #26 came forth and saved me some hand sewing; I had used it previously to attach appliques (in lieu of a satin stitch) and decided to use it again on this visible neck facing.


IMG_8828Well, I kind of got the intended “finer” look where Stitch #26 emulates the hand sewn look. Sort of.

Things to remember:

After locating the buttonhole stitch (you or your sewing machine manual may call it something else) stitch a sample on a scrap which duplicates the layers you’ll be stitching on. Remember the long vertical stitch goes on the main fabric, and the tiny horizontal one takes a bite of the folded facing.

Top sample: the original factory settings yield this look.    Bottom sample: Manipulated settings. Contrast thread used in these samples for clarity. 

Change the stitch length and width to get the intended look; I extended the stitch length all the way to 5, and reduced the width to 1.5 (see bottom sample above).  With these adjustments, the straight part of the stitch stays almost invisible on the main fabric while the “jump” takes a small bite out of the folded facing edge at intervals.

The needle taking a “bite” into the folded bias facing.  I use the center mark on the presser foot to keep the stitches where I want them. Keep trying on your sample until you get the look. 

Go on. Try this and unlock any other secrets of Stitch #26 or any other decorative stitch manipulation on your machine.  If you have done it, please share…

About my top, I’ll share the entire outfit at a later date when the bottom is also sewn. Thank you for reading my blog, friends!  Remember, there are many secrets held by your sewing machine!



5 thoughts on “Secret in Stitch #26

  1. What a fun idea Samina! I always think we should find more uses for decorative stitches – and in a way, your neckline is an applique…. I’ll have to post some of my own decorative stitch uses soon, thanks Samina!


  2. I have that stitch and sewed it out as a sample but didn’t have a immediate idea of how I would use it. I rather like the reverse now. It looks great when almost stitched in the ditch like that.


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