Thursday, 7 April 2016

chicken feet !

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The Sixth Day of December Snowflake
Lene Björn

I chickened out. Or was it jinxed ?! Whatever, but I had to keep aside my first working despite a few pick-ups & retrotatting. Firstly, I used a Split Chain to climb out to the 2nd round, which was fine, except that I climbed out at the wrong picot Both Times especially since directional tatting just complicated the working. Moreover, due to the colour placement I wanted, I had to use SLTs for the floating ring. Ugh – look at that unseemly pointed disfigured chain twisting every which way! Abandoned it with abandonment & started afresh. Round 1 wasn't any great shakes either.

But no trial goes unlearned! My observations from the abandoned piece :
1. the Reverse Join worked great to switch shuttles for chains ;
2. the yellow thread (an old ball) is closer to size 50, hence I used 2 strands of variegated, which was probably a mistake;
3. the solid yellow was too plain to highlight the variegated – needed a pick-me-up colour!

So I chickened out of trying the same colour placement again. With renewed enthusiasm, after a couple of weeks’ break, I changed the colour scheme a bit.
Abbreviation :
RS – reverse stitch (unflipped)
LJ – lock join
SH – shuttle
TW – turn work
RODS – reverse order double stitch
fs/bs tatting – frontside/backside or directional tatting
rnd – round
SS – switch shuttle
DS – double stitch

Threads used : AMC size 50 Yellow – 0302, Black for Rnd 1; Anchor embroidery cotton – 1305 3 strands .
Measurements : Rnd 1 – 1½”  ; Final - 3¼”
Techniques I used : 2 shuttles, direct tatting (RS), LJ, LJ with SH2.

Below, I have described two ways to tat Round 2 :
1. Turn Work to make the middle chain (and can use RODS in case of directional tatting) with picot at turn to attach next floating ring ;  for fs/bs tatting 
2. All frontside tatting using direct tatting ie. reverse stitch chains & LJs with either shuttle.
TIP : Make LJs with whichever shuttle is closer to picot. In Direct tatting, LJ is made with SH2 (Refer I.3.c)

Here is how Round 2 can be tatted : (Refer to WIP pic)
Start with floating ring with SH2
Chain with SH1 & LJ to rnd 1
(TW, RODS chain with SH1) or (SS, RS chain with SH2) & LJ to floating ring
(TW, chain with SH1) or (SS, chain with SH1) & LJ to rnd 1
Here, I count the LJ as 1st half stitch (as discovered while tatting the Mystery Doily) but it is up to the tatter.
Chain with SH1, picot.
(TW, RODS chain with SH1) or (SS, RS chain with SH2) & LJ with SH2 to rnd 1.
Chain with SH1 , floating ring with SH2, continue repeats as above.
The underlined option is the one I followed, never having to tat from the back side. All tatting was done in clockwise direction from the front.
However, if one is not comfortable with direct tatting (reverse/unflipped stitch), then one can turn work & continue chain (either as RODS in case of fs/bs tatting, or as normal DS).

I am always amazed at how many options one has !
Can you see the mistake I made while joining one of the chains (in 3 o'clock position in above pic)? Noticed only after the pics were taken - too late. It has been joined using the wrong shuttle. 

Overall, I think it turned out pretty okay, considering the initial tribulations.
And I Loved working with the embroidery thread - so smooth ! Although the silken sheen is not apparent in the pics.
I had an idea to snip & fray the picots, but again chickened out. May be some other time when I'm feeling more cocksure :-D

This completes 5 snowflakes for the Craftree Snowflake Tat-along. I'm now tatting Day 3 to get the first 6 done. Still have to catch up with two, but am not in any stress. Enjoying the journey.

happy tatting :-)
Related Posts : Lock Join with shuttle 2


  1. And I'm enjoying your journey. I really appreciate the way you journal your explorations. I learn something new every time. I haven't begun to think about Day 6. My mom's birthday is next week and I just know she would love to have the Benporath Cake Doyley so I'm frantically trying to get it completed before I start anything else.

    1. Thanks, Eliz. The journey is even more enjoyable when we share it with fellow travelers :-)
      Your doyley is coming along beautifully !

  2. Yup, sometimes you just have to start again! You clearly got the hang of it, good job. I haven't seen this snowflake before.

    1. Right, Jane :-) Best way to keep frustration at bay is to start afresh ! I guess this isn’t one of her more familiar snowflakes?

  3. That's some journey and a love the way it turned out in the end,
    I am now well and truly behind still in bed with flu. Day 5 has been sitting looking at me for a week, I suppose it might get finished one day.

    1. Margaret, I do hope you feel better soon ! I’ll be very happy to see you tatting & sharing again :-) But take all the rest you need.

  4. I enjoy reading your journey also. I'm not a good enough writer to express all I learn in tatting. Your posts are always written so that I learn a lot. Thank you. And yes, I agree about starting over, working with color using variegated, but disagree about using embroidery floss. I've never liked the way the knots form. I guess I should try again!

    1. Mel, you are so much more talented, & to convert music into tatting is awesome !
      Sometimes the type or quality of thread makes a ton of difference. I am a diehard fan of Anchor embroidery floss, though I have only now begun to use it in tatting & gaining confidence.

  5. Very interesting pattern. Color is really beautiful.

    1. Yes Marja, it really is a very interesting pattern, with parallel chains. I like the colours, too :-)

  6. This is beautiful and I need to be looking in on you more this is a fun book and I have done most of them in the book and some are challenging if I had know about this sooner I may have started this challenge but now I am off on other tangents :)

    1. The use of multiple techniques to create such beautiful designs is what has kept me motivated & eager to see what I can make of the next. I am using each one to experiment or challenge myself.
      Maybe we can start another year long snowflake challenge from another book next year, Carollyn ?

  7. I think your snowflake looks wonderful!!! :)

    1. Thanks Sue :-) Will soon post the Day 3 snowflake which I really really like !

  8. Oh muskaan, I have totally been neglecting blogs and commenting. I'm glad you stuck with the snowflake and figured out how to make the technique work. I like the placement of colors and all the little picots on the chains. Oh, and I looked for your mistake but cannot find it!

    1. I'm just glad you are feeling well enough ... that flu bug has been quite troublesome with so many bloggers being affected. Good to have you back :-)