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Finding a beginner friendly tatting projekt

About a year ago, I discovered the technique of tatting lace and made my first attempts with it. But quite quickly I realized that I needed a suitable project to create more than just small samples. One of the most difficult tasks in my eyes is to find a project that is challenging without being too demanding.

In the best case, it fulfils the following criteria:

  • a meaning and purpose
  • a self-contained and manageable project
  • there are instructions (at least for the technique to be learned)
  • the implementation of the desired technique is easy to understand
  • it has repetition and is still exciting
A row of tatted patterns with a tatting shuttle
The start of the first row.

For me, a corset cover was exactly the right project. This garment was worn over a corset to reduce the amount of contour showing through the outer garment. Since I finished a corset some time ago, this was the next step to complete my wardrobe of undergarments. So this project already has a purpose for me.

Also, it is a completed project as I want to make the lace for the corset cover, and it is manageable as I have set myself the goal of making the collar.

Fortunately, I also found instructions for a tatted lace collar from 1916 which I liked very much. Moreover, the instructions seemed easy to understand, and the pattern didn’t look too complicated. Especially, the repetition of a certain pattern sequence seemed to make sense to me in order to get a feeling for the technique, thus keeping the barrier to entry low and building up a certain routine. The more elaborate elements would be made last, and so I had enough practice beforehand to then understand them more easily.

Looking back, I can say that the choice of these instructions and project met my requirements perfectly. I was able to start and practice with a low barrier and was rewarded at the end with an exciting section that motivated me to keep going.

Start of the second tatted row with a wooden tatting shuttle
The start of the second row, attached to the first.
The finished lace collar with the back medaillons and a wooden tatting shuttle
Detail of the medaillons of the back.

The lace itself was of course the core of the project, but I’m a big fan of giving my projects utility, so the garment itself ad to be made too. I made the corset cover out of linen, as the texture of the fabric harmonizes nicely with the texture of the lace. The fit was particularly important to me, as I would simply put too much time into the lace for a bad fit. For this reason, I first made a mock-up in nettle and made some adjustments to fit my body. The cut itself is kept very simple so that the focus is on the lace. To make it stand out, I placed it on the fabric and left out the areas behind the lace.

The result is a garment that I can wear in a context of historical accuracy, but also as a summer top. I also got a lot of practice with the tatting technique and likewise the use of lace in garments.

Detail of the sewn in lace collar showing the back and front
The attached collar showing the right and left side of the garment.
The worn Corset cover with the tatted collar with paper stars in the background
The worn corset cover.

Material used:

  • Cotton crochet thread no. 30
  • Linen fabric
  • Silk sewing thread
  • Cotton sewing thread

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