Monday, October 19, 2009

Here's How I Did It

Here is how I made those flower petals. This is the method I worked out. Someone else may know a better way.

First, wrap the thread around your hand, but instead of bringing it into the pinch as for a ring, bring the thread over the index finger and then into the pinch. This is the color that will show on the outer part of the petals. I used two shuttles, but perhaps this one could actually be a ball thread. You will hold this thread in place while weaving the other shuttle around it, so it feels a little like a cluny. Perhaps you could make a loom to hold the thread just like you do to avoid those cluny hand cramps.

Next, with the other shuttle, make an unflipped stitch around the left thread. (I had to make a few repeats before I could get a good photo.) If you are trying for one-sided/front-sided tatting appearance, make the halves of the stitch in reverse order.

Then make an unflipped stitch around the right thread.

Repeat back and forth, with the first stitches very close together, and then leaving more thread between sides as the V shape widens.

Once you have made enough repeats back and forth, end with a stitch on the left side. (Yes, that's an uneven number of stitches, but it works easier for me to start on the left.) Tension the stitiches so that they lie close together, and then begin making regular flipped stitches for the chain across the top of the petal.

Once you have enough stitches, tug this shuttle to tension the chain, then take the work off your hand and pull on the other shuttle to close the loop.

Then make one more stitch to bring the core thread down to the base of the petal. With the blue and gold threads, I had switched shuttles to make this stitch and with the pink and purple I did not. I'm not sure which way is best, though you would need to do it the second way if you were using a ball thread instead of two shuttles.


  1. Martha,

    Great idea. I am going to give this one a try.


  2. Amazing! That is so clever - thank you for demonstrating so clearly, so tempted to have a go.

  3. Actually decided to try it and had no problem, very clear instructions, my tension needs a bit of work on it but otherwise looks fine, thank you again, I gather that the centre bit should be worked first?

  4. Fascinating! I love the look of this and it seems not that complicated. (Haven't tried it, however!)

    Both ways are appealing - depends on the design and the look you want to achieve.

    Your examples are great because they show each method in a pleasing shape!

    Thanks for posting the instructions.
    Fox : )

  5. Hey, thanks for sharing this Martha! I have added a link to this blogpost on my "Tatting Techniques" page so I can come back to it another time! Very nice of you to share. :)

  6. For this flower, I worked the little ring in the center first and joined to it between petals. The flower in the pattern Riet had might have moved from petal to petal without a center; I'm not sure.

  7. Great/brilliant tutorial, may even have a go...somewhere in the future! in another life maybe.
    Wat too many new techniques to learn that I can't even remember where I stored them. I will have to go to Chic's blog to refresh my memory.

  8. Hey Martha, this is just wonderful. Thanks for sharing! One question though: how do you join the petals at the top? Do you make a picot at the beginning of the chain and then join there? Thanks!

  9. That was so long ago, I can hardly remember. Your ideas sounds right, though.

  10. Thank you, Martha. It's a beautiful technique. I love the mix of tatting and weaving. Looks great.