Tuesday, December 28, 2010

How to tat - the 1st half of the double stitch

For the way that I tat, I like the shuttle wound counterclockwise, with thread coming out the side that is away from me.

If starting a ring, wrap thread all the way around left hand.
Thread is wrapped around left hand and pinched between thumb and forefinger (if tatting a ring). The right hand, holding the shuttle, lifts the shuttle thread up, out of the way...

...shuttle goes under both threads...

...under both threads ...

...under both threads - sliding the shuttle all the way under the thread that is on the left hand. Once it is past that thread...

...come back now, over the left hand thread. It's okay to let the thread from top of right hand slip off at this point, since you are still going under that right hand thread.

Almost done - now comes the flip...

Make the flip happen by relaxing the tension on your left hand (bring your fingers down, slightly closing left hand)...

...and pull the shuttle thread tight - to the right.

There is the 1st half! Bring your fingers back up on your left hand to tighten the tension. Keep the shuttle thread tight. See how the shuttle thread is the core over which the stitch slides.
These photos are just a rough attempt to show the classic method of shuttle tatting. In actuality, I hold my shuttle in a slightly different manner - but it forms the 1st half with the flip, all the same.  
The 2nd half is shown on another post; to see the 2nd half, click here.

14 comments:

Karrieann said...

...getting back to the basics
I wrap my shuttles the same way as you do, counter-clock! (Which is right for me and not necessarily for others)

I think it is good for those starting out to try both ways of wrapping and find which is favorable to themselves!

Karen said...

Nice clear instructions and pictures. Should be good for the first time tatter. You wind your shuttle the same way I do. A Coats & Clark How To book was my teacher in the early 70's. Karen in OR

Kathy Niklewicz said...

If I had seen photos like these back in the '50s, '60s, '70s, I would have been able to learn to tat back then! It seemed that they only showed about four photos (or drawings) of hands and never really zeroed in on how the flip was done. (Actually, I didn't even know that there was supposed to be a flip!)

I'm assuming someone else took the photos, unless you had the camera on a tripod?!! In any event - great job, as usual!

I am impressed with all the events you participated in this year. Hope you have a wonderful 'next' Year!

yarnplayer said...

Thanks, Karrieann. You're right, there are quite a number of different ways to tat. In the past few years I've been lucky enough to have been able to watch a few different expert tatters, and they each have their own way - all effective.

Thank you, Karen. I learned from books in the 70's, too!

Thanks, Kathy Niklewicz, I had the same problem when I was trying to learn from books. It took me a while to understand about the "flip" as well, which I think in those days was usually referred to as "capsize" or "turn the knot".

I used a tripod. The photos are less than perfect, but hopefully can still help a beginner catch on.

Bri's Bits said...

wow, I love to see how everyone tats, that is soooooo not how I do it! I like seeing all the different styles, and yes, your instructions are so very clear and easy to follow, I am going to try and do it your way just to see if I can :D

yarnplayer said...

Bri's Bits, these photos are not really how I tat - just the way I force myself to tat when I am teaching. I'll have to do another post showing how I really tat - which the other tatters in the guild have said is "weird" - lol.

Tat-ie said...

These explanations seem perfectly clear to me. Here is my first resolution for 2011 (just a bit in advance) : try at long last to drop my needles and start tatting with shuttles! I've already tried with a book and videos on the internet but I really lost it!!! So now with your help I think I can try again. I will let you know what happens...

Rachel@oneprettything.com said...

I've always wanted to try tatting and your tute makes it look completely doable. I'm so glad I clicked over from Craft Gossip. I would love to link to this if you didn't mind.

yarnplayer said...

Tat-ie, I hope it all works out this time!

Rachel, yes, go ahead and link to this post if you like.

Miranda said...

Wonderful instructions! This is really what is needed, step-by-step instructions with clear photos of each step, with the photos including good views of the thread, shuttle, and hands.

The friend who taught me to tat taught herself from a book. I don't know how she did it with the instructions that were available back then, but then she always was clever with any kind of needlework.

There is no such thing as "weird" tatting! As long as you're producing double stitches, you're doing it right!

Evitad said...

I really like your tutorial - great work!
Could you tell me - beginner :) how you finish your work? I've` tried needle tatting before and it was easier, now I have got problem because my work starts to rip at the end :(

yarnplayer said...

There are several options for finishing tatting (securing and hiding the thread ends). What I usually do is either to sew them under the caps of the double stitches, or else use the magic thread trick to pull them into the work. I'd recommend looking at the videos and tips offered by Sharon at: http://www.rsbriggs.com/slb/

Evitad said...

Thank you for your advices :) and for your book which I've received today, cant wait to start tatting :)

Shirl said...

Great pic tutorial. I don't tat like that at all. The way I was taught does not involve wrapping the thread at all. When I try this method I end going at a snails pace. :) Can't wait to see pics of how you actually tat.