Saree Embroidery - 3 - Chain stitch and Mirrors

The Chain Stitch is such a common and simple technique that most of us stitchers just don't dwell much upon its complexity, but it can lend itself to a variety of applications.

Saree pallu with chain stitches
Here is an application of simple chain stitch in lustrous apricot colored silk thread onto a dark charcoal -grey-colored georgette saree.
Chain stitch technique
Check out how this simple technique can work wonders on an otherwise drab background!

And if you thought, a chain stitch is just that, think again, for there are several amazing variations to this stitch as catalogued by Sharon B or on Wikipedia..

You can further embellish the hexagons with mirrors/shisha work inside them.   Check out Emily's superb tutorial on stitching mirrors >>
Closeup of my saree border

Some Shisha facts from the Embroiderers Guild:

  • Shisha is the Indian word for mirror.  
  • Shisha glass is available in a variety of shapes including round (the most common type), square and triangular. Sizes vary from large to tiny.
  • There are no holes in the mirror glass so it has to be held in place with a framework of stitches over which decorative stitches are worked.
  • You can buy embroidered shisha rings in a range of colours, shapes and sizes. Place the ring over your chosen shisha (they work well with sequin shisha) and slipstitch in place around the edge of the ring.
  • The decorative ring around the mirror glass can be worked in various stitches, including shisha stitch, herringbone or cretan stitch.
  • There are several types of shisha available:
  • Handblown glass shisha is also known as antique shisha or mica. As it is hand cut, the sizes are more variable and the shape can be slightly irregular.
  • Machine-cut glass is known in India as embroidery glass.
  • Sequin shisha are in fact large flat sequins. They are thin and flat and have a hole at one side, but this is covered with the stitching.
Join the Flickr pool of Shisha embroidery >>


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