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Barred buttonhole wheel icon
Barred buttonhole wheel

Barred buttonhole wheel main image

This pulled thread stitch is a version of buttonhole wheel, with a wider central hole.  Rather than taking the buttonhole stitch into the same central hole, the stitches are split between four holes (leaving a crossed bar visible in the centre, hence the name).

Barred Buttonhole Wheel has been generously sponsored in memory of Beverley Ruth Cram.



Work a buttonhole edge to the eyelet by bringing the needle up on the outside of the circle and down in the centre.
The centre hole is divided into four quarters, the stitches from 12 o’clock to three o’clock are taken into the top right hole.
It is a pulled stitch, so gently pull the working thread on the up stitch to open the up fabric and produce the characteristic holes in the centre.


Three o’clock to six o’clock are taken into the bottom right hole.


Six o’clock to nine o’clock are taken into the bottom left hole.


Nine o’clock to 12 o’clock are taken into the top left hole.


The final stitch is taken under the first edging stitch, to complete a neat circle.

Barred buttonhole wheel

Structure of stitch

Embroidery Techniques


  • Mrs Archibald Christie, Samplers and Stitches (1921) , p.106
  • Mary Thomas’s Dictionary of Embroidery Stitches (1934) , p.26