1 Bring the needle out on the far left of the closed buttonhole stitch (1), and push the needle back at the tip of the stitch (2), where all 3 upwards stitches will converge. Hold the loose thread with your left hand so that it doesn’t get tightened too early.
Bring the needle out at the base of the first upwards stitch (3). Pull it out and tighten the thread, then push the needle back out at the top of the stitch again (4).
2 Repeat the same process for the next 2 upwards stitches: out at the base of the 2nd stitch (5), always making sure the needle comes up inside the thread loop, back through the fabric at the top (6), and out at the base of the 3rd stitch (7) to finish the cluster of stitches.
Repeat the entire process to stitch as many clusters of closed buttonhole stitches as required.
3 To go round corners, simply use the same method, tilting the stitches as shown on the pattern.
4 There are 2 ways to end this stitch – depending on whether you need to reconnect to an existing row of similar stitches (for a seamless finish), or wheher you need a clear cut end to the row.
The seamless finish:
When you get to the 3rd upwards stitch of the last cluster, add a step between the (5) and (6) steps described above: BEFORE pushing the needle back through the fabric at the top, glide it UNDER the first stitch of the next cluster. THEN push the needle back through the fabric, and tie the thread at the back of the stitch.
The clear cut finish:
Once you’ve stitched the last upward stitch of the last cluster, push the needle back through the fabric in the hole directly NEXT to the last used hole. This will tack the stitch in place with a tiny (almost) invisible stitch.
Fancy seeing it stitched in action? Here’s a short video:
Fancy trying out your new skills? Here’s a selection of patterns do to just that: