Blog, Stitches & Techniques

Buttonhole stitch over wire


Buttonhole stitch is useful for covering the wired edge of a shape, like a leaf or a wing.


Click on image to enlarge




  • Come up on the outside edge of the wire and make a buttonhole stitch over the wire.

  • Work from left to right, stab-stitch-style: take needle and thread all the way to the back 

and then come up inside the loop that has just been formed.


  • Make the stitches alongside one another without leaving a space, for a neat finish and to conceal the wire.

  • When you need to end off, run the needle under the stitches at the back of your work.



           Stitch diagram is © 2011 Metz Press and Di van Niekerk.



For more about making stumpwork shapes, you are welcome to visit my blog here 

and look for “how to make stumpwork shapes”

This technique is used to make the wings of the Fairies below.


Click on the image to enlarge




  • The wings are made separately with a wired edge (See Black Medick Fairies from my Flower Fairies ™ book … page 105)
  •  The wire is covered with buttonhole stitch, as shown above.
  • The wings are filled in with long and short stitch and are are cut out and applied to the design.
  •  This way, the wings are lifted off the surface of the design for a lovely three-dimensional effect.



To download the printable version, click on the PDF below

Buttonhole stitch over wire by Di van Niekerk