This is based on my write-up entitled "kettlestitch" on Everything2. E2 does not permit illustrations; thus the ASCII art. I will tailor the text and add photos at a later time.

Bookbinding - A row of chain stitches that holds the signatures of a book together. Most rows of kettlestitches are sewn in grooves cut into the backs of the signatures.

The term comes from the German word ketteln, meaning to link or make a chain.

This description assumes you have already sewn three signatures, and are now facing your first kettlestich before you go on to the fourth.

  1. Take the thread from the hole in your left hand, maintaining tension.
  2. Pass the needle between the first two signatures A and B, so that the thread goes from right to left behind the thread connecting them
  3. Bring the needle out between the knot and the thread you're holding in your right hand, so the thread path looks like this:
       n    /
        \  /
          | \
          |   \$
          |    $
          |    $\
           \   $ \
            \  $ /
    n = needle
    $ = knot
  4. Draw the knot tight and pass the needle into the next signature (C) through the kettlestich hole.