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The Henson Stitch

Discussion in 'Puppet News' started by Super Scooter, Aug 20, 2003.

  1. Super Scooter

    Super Scooter New Member

    I don't recall this ever coming up anywhere, but does anyone actually KNOW what the Henson stitch is? How is it done? I've come up with something that kind of hides seams, at least much better than regular stitches, but it doesn't hold up very well. Does anyone have a pattern of the stitch or something that would show how it's done? I know a lot of you make some beautiful puppets, that you can just barely see the seams with. Have you discovered the Henson stitch? I'd greatly appreciate the help. Thank you!
  2. Fozzie Bear

    Fozzie Bear Active Member

    Hey, Scooter Supe! Glad you're okay.

    There's been a plethora of information on the elusive Henson Stitch, and last I remember it was said to be a rumor.

    As best I can recall, it's when you sew in tight stitches really close together and trim the excess material as close as possible to the stitches without clipping the threads or gapping the material.
  3. Ryan

    Ryan New Member

    Actually, it';s not a rumour, as Don Sahiln dicusses it on Muppets On Puppets from 1967.
  4. Fozzie Bear

    Fozzie Bear Active Member

    what'd he say about the henson stitch? did he describe it? Was he irritated that it wasn't the Sahlin Stitch? j/k.

    What'd Don say about the stitch?
  5. Ryan

    Ryan New Member

    Mostly that he called it the Henson Stitch, what it was, and that it takes hours to do ;)
  6. Phillip

    Phillip Administrator Staff Member

  7. Super Scooter

    Super Scooter New Member

    Ryan,
    Don Sahlin didn't actually say a whole lot about the Henson Stitch in his speach. Just that it took hours to do.

    Ah, they were right. I'd be back in a month (although it's been a few days more than a month). I missed it around here, and though I won't be on here as much (especially come September), I figured I'd stop in again...

    Thanks for the link, Phil. I think I might have figured out something close, and, Fozzie's almost dead on (Foz, if you want, I can teach you a different trick you could use that will help a little in hiding seams. I think rather than try to get someone to spill the beans, I'll just stick to that. It's actually fairly obvious in what to do!). But, of course, in order to do the stitch I'm talking about, you either need fake fur or antron fleece. But, that's okay. That's what I'll be using anyway.

    Thanks for the help!
  8. Fozzie Bear

    Fozzie Bear Active Member

    Heya, Scoot.

    Just email me, or post your ideas here. I think it'd be great to keep it open for discussion so we can all learn from one another.

    FOZ
  9. Torarin

    Torarin New Member

  10. Torarin

    Torarin New Member

    The thing that makes people confused is that they think the "secret" is in the stitch itself. Therefore someone says it's a rumor and some claim it's not. The stitch they use is just a whip stitch - around and around the edge of the two fabrics. But to hide it, you would try to flatten the seam down (you could try to iron it without the heat turned on) and pull out the fleece from inside the seam, and just work with the fleece until it kinda covers the seam. The seam isn't supposed to be completely invisible, they arn't if you look at them close in real life. But on video or pictures it's pretty surprising how good it looks.
  11. Super Scooter

    Super Scooter New Member

    That doesn't sound like it would take "hours to do" as Don Sahlin claimed.

    My technique is surprisingly simple, though a bit difficult. You know how when you're sewing you hold the two pieces up against each other then sew together that way? Don't do that. You lay the two pieces SEPERATE down on the floor, or table, or whatever, then sew the edges togehter. You cannot let the material fold, otherwise the seams become immediately visible. Go in the one piece, out the SAME piece right up next to the edge, less than a centemeter away from the edge of the material, then go in the next piece in the same place, less than a centimeter away from the edge, then out again, and tie the stitch together. If that makes any sense to you at all, well, then, WEIRD!

    It actually prevents the two edges from ever actually being connected, which eliminates the seam. Or at least the apparent seam. Try it with antron fleece.

    sorta like the image below...

    --][--
  12. Puppetplanet

    Puppetplanet Member

  13. Fozzie Bear

    Fozzie Bear Active Member

    Not the standard stitching where we put the pieces against one another to sew; rather, we lay the different pieces side by side and stitch them together where they touch. Did that help?
  14. Puppetplanet

    Puppetplanet Member


    A wittle bit, but I didn't understand the stitching technique. And do you tie it after EVERY stich? Holy crow! *laughing*
  15. Fozzie Bear

    Fozzie Bear Active Member

    Eek! I missed that part! I guess you do. I think i do that anyways, with like a loop-stitch I suppose, where I stick it in one side, pull it out hte other and wrap the thread around the needle.
  16. Buck-Beaver

    Buck-Beaver Active Member

    Actually, it can take hours to do properly ("properly" being the operative world).
  17. Fozzie Bear

    Fozzie Bear Active Member


    HAAA!!
    We're talking about "stitches" and you said "operative!"

    I thought it was funn-ee.
  18. Super Scooter

    Super Scooter New Member

    It's sort of a weird whip stitch... sorta...

    you have to make sure the stitch is good and tight before tying it off. And, it's not a real knot, just sort of... I really don't know what to call it... but it works.

    I hope you guys try it soemtime... if you can figure it out! Maybe I'll make a pattern and post it online somewhere...


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