Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Tatted Necklaces

I picked up a new hobby - needle tatting.

Backstory: I stumble upon cool blogs every once in a while. One of the blogs I like to follow is TotusMel's Wunderkammer, which features sometimes steampunk, sometimes goth, always cool finds usually from Etsy but occasionally from other places, as well as Flickr features once a week. TotusMel also has a personal blog, where she talks about her life, family, and work as an independent small business needle tatter. (She has an Etsy store here.) Through that blog I found her Instructables tutorials, which led to me learning yet another craft.

How I did it: Before I even got a set of tatting needles, I followed TotusMel's Flower Pendant Instructable, using a yarn needle and some yarn just to get the general idea of how it worked. After I got the needles I made a few more flowers, then finally decided that I wanted to put a few together and make a necklace. I used the Split Rings and Josephine Chains video to figure out the 'chain' part of the flower necklace. I will say that I was still mastering the tension aspect of tatting so my flowers seem a little wonky in places, and I also didn't bother to press, steam, or otherwise treat the finished piece, which would probably help.

After that, I decided I wanted to make a necklace following one of her patterns, so I followed the Needle Tatting a Necklace Instructable. This helped me really understand what was happening on the needle and gave me the confidence to try my hand at designing my own tatting.

What I learned: A lot. The needle tatting double stitch, picot, rings, chains, how to join, as well as the way rings and chains work together to create the shapes we interpret as flowers and clovers.

What I might try next time: I should try blocking the lace when it is done, press it or steam it or something. I am working on designing a mask (also inspired by TotusMel and likely using parts of her Tatted Mask tutorial as a guide). I also used her Tatted Mustache necklace as inspiration for a tatted mustache as a wedding gift for a friend (I don't know if I have a picture of that anywhere).

Final Thoughts: Tatting takes a little getting used to but like other yarn/thread crafts falls into place with a little bit of practice. These necklaces turned out nice, and I'd like to redo the modified Fluerette necklace in black (the white is beautiful but I wear a lot of black). I am curious about shuttle tatting, and may look into teaching myself that sometime in the future (but not anytime soon, I don't have time for *another* hobby).

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