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Puncetto Valsesiano, Part 2 – The Stitch

Posted by Avital Pinnick on August 1, 2010

In my last posting on the subject, I gave a short introduction to Puncetto Valsesiano.

In this posting I will show you how to make the basic stitch.

Puncetto Valsesiano is worked back and forth in rows (or rounds, if you are making a circular doily or working around the outside of a square piece). The work is never turned over and the same side always faces you. The needle is held pointing away from you.

Puncetto Valsesiano is not worked on the edge of a piece of fabric unless you are working an edging. Motifs and doilies usually are started with a loop of thread, but it is easier to show the back-and-forth movement of the stitches with a firm base, so I used a folded piece of fabric. (In the next lesson I will show you how to make a “ladder” base, which is used for starting square and rectangular motifs.)


  • Crochet thread. Any smooth, mercerized cotton thread suitable for crochet can be used. Perle 8 is fine for a beginner. Later you may want to try something finer like size 30 or 50.
  • Needle. I used a needle with a sharp point in the photos below because I was working through the edge of fabric, but I recommend a fine, blunt tapestry needle. Size 26 would work well. Just make sure that the size of the needle is proportionate to the weight of your thread. Don’t try to force a thick needle through fine stitches.

Working Left to Right

1. Thread a needle and hold the tail on the fabric, near the edge.

Puncetto Valsesiano 1

2. Insert the needle, point facing away from you, through the edge of the fabric. Note that the thread that you are holding with your left thumb passes in front of the needle.

Puncetto Valsesiano 2

3. Wrap the thread behind the needle, from right to left, forming a loop.

Puncetto Valsesiano 3

4. Grasp the needle with your right hand and draw it through the loop.

Puncetto Valsesiano 4

5. Carefully draw the needle through the loop and tighten the knot. This forms the first stitch or knot.

Puncetto Valsesiano 5

6. Insert the needle to the right of the first stitch.

Puncetto Valsesiano 6

7. Loop the thread around the needle again, left to right, then behind the needle and right to left.

Repeat until you have a row of stitches. Now look carefully at the stitches. You will see loops of thread between each knot. These loops are used for working the next row of knots.

Puncetto Valsesiano 7

Working Right to Left:

These instructions presume that you have already worked one row from left to right. Do not turn the work.

1. Insert the needle under the first loop.

Puncetto Valsesiano 8

2. Wrap the thread in front of the needle, from right to left, and then behind the needle, from left to right, so that it forms a loop.

Puncetto Valsesiano 9

3. Grasp the needle with the right hand, draw the needle through the loop, and tighten the knot.

Puncetto Valsesiano 10

4. Insert the needle under the next loop of the previous row, wrap the thread around the needle, and draw the needle through the loop to form the stitch.

Puncetto Valsesiano 11

That is how you work horizontal rows in Puncetto Valsesiano. This stitch is also used for filling in the solid squares and pyramids. Try not to work it too tightly or you will end up with a very stiff, dense lace.

25 Responses to “Puncetto Valsesiano, Part 2 – The Stitch”

  1. pam said

    Beautifully done – your tutorial and two posts on Puncetto Valsesiano.

    • Avital Pinnick said

      Thanks, Pam! It’s taking me a while to get to the next installment. Maybe after my vacation I’ll actually sit down and do it!

  2. Jeff said

    Excellent tutorial! I can’t wait for the next one showing the ladder base. Thank you for these.

    • Avital Pinnick said

      Thanks, Jeff. I got sidetracked and I go on vacation next week. When I get back I hope to blog more regularly.

  3. Diane said

    Thank you for this tutorial! This is very interesting, and looks like something I’d enjoy. I also look forward to your next tutorial!

  4. Stephanie said

    thanks for these instructions! I have looked everywhere online to find out how to do this! Its much easier starting from fabric, but how do you start it as its done in the video? I tried it several times and it just looks like a mess!

    • Avital Pinnick said

      Thanks, Stephanie. I was actually thinking of posting another lesson but I cut my left index finger yesterday while making a salad. It’s not bleeding anymore but it’s quite visible and wouldn’t look good in the photos. Will try to get to it soon!

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  7. Onna Addis said

    YAY! thank you , was a click the next page of your instructions. HUGS,

  8. HERMINDA said


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  13. carla said

    non riesco a trovare un manuale del puncetto valsesiano per vavore aiutatemi

    • Avital Pinnick said

      The best book on Puncetto is:

      Carlo Rosetti, Paola Scarrone, and Angela Stefanutto, A Scuola di Puncetto Valsesiano (Società Operaia di Mutuo Soccorso, 2009).

      Unfortunately, it’s difficult to find because Elena closed her business, but you might find it on eBay. Good luck!


  14. Maria Isabel said

    gracias trato de hacerlo pero me sale disparejo

    • Avital Pinnick said

      Practice, practice, practice! If you’ve never done needlelace before, it does take a while to get the technique but you’ll get it in the end. Good luck!

  15. Selena Joosten said

    Ha this is what i got, a blunt needle and have plenty of Perle cotton to start a new project, think i will try finer this time.

  16. cheryl pierce said

    your pictures and descriptions are so clear! thank you very much for making this easier. for me, a raw beginner. but please, once I get to the tip of a “pyramid” when doing edging, how do I get down to the cloth again?

    • Avital Pinnick said

      I’ve seen two ways of returning to the bottom of the pyramid, to start the next pyramid. The first is to make stitches down the side, in each the rows below, so that you’re ‘traveling’ along the edge to the bottom, like this. The second method is to go directly from the top to the bottom, which leaves a loop (you can sometimes see this in oya flowers).

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