Mary Corbet

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I learned to embroider when I was a kid, when everyone was really into cross stitch (remember the '80s?). Eventually, I migrated to surface embroidery, teaching myself with whatever I could get my hands on...read more

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Braid Stitch Video Tutorial – aka Cable Plait Stitch


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Here’s a video tutorial for the Braid Stitch, which is also known as the Cable Plait Stitch. I used the stitch recently in the felt and floche piece I was stitching, and received a heap of questions about it – more so, I think, than any stitch I’ve ever shown here on Needle ‘n Thread! The pink line in the photo below is the braid stitch:

Braid Stitch Video Tutorial, aka Cable Plait Stitch

I think the braid (or cable plait) stitch is a really pretty stitch, and it’s not too complicated once you get the hang of the movements involved in it. The video tutorial will hopefully make it a little easier to learn.

The stitch can be worked successfully on curves and lines. It makes terrific vines, borders, and outlines. In the video, I’m working the stitch with a #5 perle cotton, and the stitch is about 1/2″ wide, but I think it looks best when worked with a slightly finer thread (like floche or cotton a broder, or even a few strands of regular floss, though I like it best with a twisted single thread), on a narrower line. When the stitch is a bit more compact, the results are more braid-like.

Here’s the video:

You can find quite a few more videos on hand embroidery stitches here on Needle ‘n Thread, so check those out if you’re looking for particular stitches to learn!

Hope you enjoy the video!

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(27) Comments

  1. Your tutorials are terrific. I love this stitch. It comes up a lot in Montmellick work. One thing I have noticed is that the edge loops are sort of “at risk” for being disturbed because they are held in place by the slanted stitch — so depending on how the resulting piece will be used, I have at times had to go back and use a regular sewing thread to invisibly tack the loops in place.

  2. Bobbi, you mentioned the fact that the edges can easily be disturbed. The way to avoid this is to work the stitch very narrow – about 1/8th of an inch – and it hardly moves at all. This is what I recommend in my book on Mountmellick embroidery, and in my stitch dictionaries.

    My personal preference is that it should not be worked wide as it is too unstable.

  3. Hi Mary,
    Is there something I’m doing wrong? This is the second time I cannot access the video for your plaited braid stitch (the other was the french knot – that I remember). It just doesn’t come up. Or would it be since you have changed the style of your blog? Did anyone else have the same problem? I really wanted to see how the braid stitch is done, it is so pretty.
    Thanks for sharing. Happy festive season, just in case I do not mail you again this end of year.

    1. Hi, Maryvonne – I’m not sure what the problem is. It opens fine on my end, and I’ve tested it in different browsers to see if it works, and it seems to work across the board, in chrome, explorer, safari, and firefox. The only thing I can guess is that you don’t have the software required to view videos? Do you have the most recent version of Flash installed? Here’s the link to the help center, for troubleshooting viewing problems: http://www.google.com/support/youtube/bin/topic.py?hl=en&topic=17173

      If that doesn’t work, let me know. Also, you can access the video straight through YouTube, in case that helps. Drop me a line and let me know how it goes!


  4. Hi Mary,
    Voila! You only have to complain and… magic… it worked: the video, not the stitch. I need to have another couple of go’s to get it working. I’m getting my fingers and the thread in a twist here. Must have at least four thumbs because your video could not be clearer. Thanks. LOL

  5. Thank you very much for this tutorial. I’ve never seen this stitch mentioned in a book or worked on any embroidery piece. Very interesting!

  6. it doesn’t work, let me know. you can access the video straight through YouTube, in case that helps me but you tube is blocked in my country . Drop me a line and let me know how it goes!thanks.

  7. Mary, I enjoy your marvelous, informative site. As I’ve been relearning embroidery (or learning correctly for the first time) I’ve used the video tutorials extensively–so much more useful then my how-to books. And even the tips on the basics have improved my work dramatically this last couple weeks.
    Thank you!

  8. Hi Mary, I was into embroidery a lot before i got married but now with two kids and household I hardly get any time for it, but you are an inspiration to me. I just learned Trellis stitch and now i am trying to do this, hope it works. Thanks a lot.

  9. I live in Australia at the moment so receive your daily emails and stitching videos each morning when I get up. My favourite embroidery is the stitch I get new each day, and then get to practise a line of them along with my first cup of coffee, sitting on my deck listening to,and watching the antics the parrots – heaven on earth, or at least my little bit of paradise!

  10. bonsoir, pouvez s’il vous plait nous guider pour faire le point de damier en broderie. Je ne trouve nulle part la marche à suivre. Encore merci pour votre site.
    bien sincèrement

  11. Hello,
    I’m real glad that you have made these tutorials for those of us who want to learn. I noticed the braid stitch aka. As the cable stitch. I see that there is an arrow to start tutorial but there is nothing to watch. Did you stop this tutorial? I love how beautifully it can be used as an edging and I thank you for your tutorials. I hope there will be more tutorials to watch.
    Thank you again!
    Sincerely Elizabeth

  12. Hi Mary,
    I love how you made your braided stitches adding different colors. Do you by chance have a video that can show us how you mix the colors in your braided stitch. I would very much like to learn how you do it.
    Thank You again.
    Sincerely Elizabeth

  13. Hi Mary,
    Came across your site by chance searching Pinterest. Seriously LOVE everything to do with ribbon embroidery. I tried my hand at it and they are ALL fairly easy. Really like this “braid”stitch to use for/on embroidered initials. If you have any other that IS easy and looks nice, please share with, if you don’t mind. Also, if you have any “initial” designs not too intricate, let me know about them as well. Really appreciate as much as you can “share”. Thanks a bunch. Maribel

    PS: Will try my best to get these embroidered on tulle material, then cut and glue on garment (it is “fleece” – so I cannot embroider directly on that type of fabric)

  14. I have tried this stitch over and over but the left loops keep coming loose. Its a pretty stitch but I just can’t get it to stay in place.

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