Monday, 24 September 2018

colouring the Cluny

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The current Cluny tatting series has covered how to wind the loom and weave tallies where the loom and weaving threads are either the same colour or different colours. For many more tips, ideas, and possibilities, refer to my earlier series and posts.

We now come to the original purpose of this series – multicolour Cluny leaves or tallies – a glimpse of which you saw here last year.

As usual, let’s go progressively… 2-coloured Cluny tatting. For 2 colours to show on a tally, we will actually need 3 threads – 1 for the loom which is hidden, and 2 for the stripes that are visible.
Adding more threads allows us opportunity to play with colours for the next Cluny leaf or element(s) in a pattern.

I chose to work on a cardboard loom, weaving with a tapestry needle especially when using multiple colours. The process itself is simple, but some management of threads is required as we increase colours (threads). If we choose a flat surface to place our loom while weaving, and lay the unwanted thread on the side, it avoids tangling and weaving can be done comfortably.

To repeat – this same method works on a box loom ; and in any pattern a split ring can be substituted with a regular tally/petal/leaf, and a normal ring with a hanging Cluny leaf.

  • How to add new thread (knotless method)
  • How to hide tail of new thread
  • How to avoid the colour blip from loom thread
Two-Colour Cluny Tatting
(3 threads and 2-coloured striped Cluny leaf)

Loom/Warp thread - mustard ;
Weaving threads – Colour 1 on the right – green; Colour 2 on the left – pink
Sequence of weaving : green, pink. Colours alternate after each wrap/weave, giving a striped appearance.

You can try different visual effects: from regular stripes to broader bands to random, and from broad to hanging Cluny leaves.

1. The previous element (split ring) already has 2 colours – mustard and green. 
We will add a 3rd thread (pink) while weaving the tally.
Wind the loom as usual, with 3 Warps.
Bring green to the right (Under, Over) and leave pink on the left side.

2. Make 1 pass to the left with green (Under, Over, Under),
place pink over the green ….
(as mentioned in previous post, you can choose your own style of weaving)

 3. … and make the return pass to the right (Over, Under, Over), trapping the pink within. 
Leave a pink tail to be hidden later. 

 4. Snug and tamp down the weaves before proceeding.
Notice the new thread is captured within on the left side.

5. With pink thread, move to the right (Under, Over, Under) …
Scroll to end for 2 ways to hide this new tail. 

 6. … and back to the left (Over, Under, Over)

7. Pick up green and move to left (Under, Over, Under), and return to the right.

8. Similarly, make another weave with pink moving to the right and back to left.

9. Continue, alternating the colours as desired, and shaping the tally as you go.
This tally has 15 wraps and threads are back in their original position.

10. Pass both needles through the top loop, back to front.

 11. Both threads are through the top loop. This will hide the loom thread colour.

12. Top loop pulled off the loom and start closing the tally.

13. Top and bottom loops of the loom are closed.

14. One 2-Colour tally made.

To hide tail of new thread :
Needle the tail and weave it through the back of the tally. 
If we weave under the green thread, then the tail will not be visible at all. 
Snip off excess.

See also tip #12 for hiding tails here and Dagmar’s video here. : In pic #5 above, fold the tail behind to align with Warp1. Then, weave as normal, incorporating/encapsulating this tail within. After a few wraps, the excess tail can be snipped off. 

Next in this series is a 3-coloured broad Cluny leaf (4 Warps), and hopefully a practice pattern for these 2-coloured tallies.

The only 2- or 3-coloured Cluny tatting I have come across is by the talented and prolific Dagmar Pezzuto. In both cases, she has worked hanging Cluny petals or leaves. The principle remains the same. You can find all her Cluny patterns through Georgia’s site here.

… to be continued


  1. Very interesting tutorial. Thank you!

  2. This has so much potential! I wonder whether it's possible to carry the third colour thread inside the ds.

  3. I can see why this idea grabbed you! I love the potential! I must run it by friends who do bobbin lace. It just may lure them back to the shuttles!

  4. I like the look of the multicolour tally. I’ll have to study this. Thanks.

  5. Glad you like my effort, thank you :-)))) And I hope you join me again to see how to hide the colour blip at the base of the tally as well, before I get to the 3- & 4-colour tallies. I've been so blind !!!

    Jenn, there are multiple ways to hide and carry a 3rd thread - padded tatting (encapsulation or unflipped stitches), double core SR, split/SCMR, pearl tatting, to name a few. You can find a few of these in my blog or Karen's videos.

    Mel, now that is reverse enticement ;-P From what I know, Cluny weaving came from lace making of the name...

    Jane, I know you'll be able to take it forward :-))

  6. I love the two colored clunies and I did this long ago and still trying to think of a great way to tat them into something. But I did mine a bit differently and did two rows of the same color and so the strips were thicker. I like the look of both :)

    1. Carollyn, I did the thicker stripes during my early trials ("tallying") and love how we can play with the thickness of stripes :-D
      I'm going to try it in a butterfly (I shared a trial pic earlier) when I can squeeze in some time.

  7. Bloomer has done it again ! It has torpedoed my new post backward in time. Check out the latest post (hitch the loom) here :

    1. Blogger, not bloomer ! What a blooper aaargh.

  8. Maybe you should call it Blooper, not Blogger. :)

    Brilliant tutorial on 2-color Cluny tallies. Excellent explanation!

    1. Yes, Blooper is what we should call it, Steph !!!
      So glad you liked the explanation, et al. Means a lot coming from an experienced Cluny tatter :-)

  9. Reading your post I started to search two cluny leaves, I had made earlier, but could not find. Thanks for reminding me them. Your experiments are just like research. Very good.

    1. Hope you get back to some Cluny projects, Alka :-)
      And yes, I do try to do my homework as best possible to make any info I put out valid and authentic, as research should be ;-D