Every year at our library, the local tatting group gets together and brings out the best of their best for the tatting display (probably to recruit new members). I never really see anybody go up to the display and really look at it, but then I am back in the back offices in our library and not out on the reference desk where the display is near. This year I think they brought out their best work ever or at least it is some of the more complex work that they have made.
Or at least the display has caught my eye more than it has in the past. This year it is stuffed to the brim with doilies, runners, single motifs, and edgings. I think my favorite part of tatting is the edging deigns because they just look so delicate.
Sadly, I didn’t get a good picture of the tatting doll in the corner who is holding a shuttle and a ball of thread with the cutest little tatted lace bonnet, but I did get some good pictures of some of the other works in the cage. Of course, I had to find and include some of the bookmarks they have made since I do work at the library and the library is filled with books. Tatted bookmarks just follow suit.
The real score of the display was in an older looking box that was surrounded by older cellulose tatting shuttles (like the white ones with the pink/white and the purple edgings). They didn’t have a note with them saying how old they were, but judging by the slight yellowing of the tatting thread it was pretty old. I would love to be able to get up closer and actually examine some of that older edging myself to see how it might have been done. But if the edging wasn’t that old, then somebody did an excellent job at making it look old and the vintage feel just comes from the fantastic box.
I did take the time to bring my own tatting kit with me to try to replicate the pink/white edging and I wasn’t prepared with the ruckus that I would cause. Normally, nobody really pays me much attention when I craft in public. Every once in a while I get asked if I’m making a baby bootie (in the midst of a full size sock) or get a comment on how I could ever knit with so many needles jangling around. The normal types of questions/comments that you would expect from knitting in public. But the sight of me sitting by the display case slowly tatting an edge was something that people just couldn’t resist!
About every two minutes somebody would come up to me and ask me what I was doing, how I was doing it, how lovely it was to see a young person doing something like that, and asking if I made everything in the display case. I even had my co-workers coming up to me and drilling me on how tatting was done and if it was harder than my knitting. I was a little amazed at the response to me doing that.
I think the best part was somebody mentioning to the Director of the Library that “the girl is plagiarizing from the tatting group!” and my immediate response was “this is how people learned how to do it when there weren’t any written down instructions”. Our Director laughed at the shock on our patron’s face at that one and then told me how impressed she was that I was able to do it by sight and to keep it up.
Anyway, the tiny little sample to the left is my reproduction of the pink and white edging. I figured out the logic of the edging. It is actually tatted in the flip flopping arrangement and not just twisted around itself. My little mistake that makes it slightly different from the original is that I missed a joining picot, so mine only has two decorative picots on the rings instead of three. Now that I know how it is done, I can wind more thread on the shuttle and try for a longer edging.