Monday, 24 September 2018

hitch the loom

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I’ve been a real dolt – a blind one! Last year Georgia had sent me a 2-page pdf of Edwige Renaudin’s diagrams (with instructions in French) as a possible layout for my colour Cluny presentation. Edwige is a master cluny tatter and author…”
I will start diagramming if many of you are interested – 
please let me know through comment or email.

But anyway, the point is that she starts her tally weaving in a way that finally led to my perfect Cluny leaf! You have all been very supportive, overlooking the imperfections in my tallies, and I appreciate it so very much. Now, however, I am finally happy myself! Look for yourself (the Before and the After) - 

I have prepared a short pictorial to show the step and the difference it makes.

Cluny Tatting Basic : Hitch The Loom
(Hitch is the term used for an unflipped half stitch).

Winding the loom and weaving remains the same. Before weaving actually starts, there is one additional step where we capture all the loom threads within an unflipped half stitch (a hitch). 
This step can be used in any Cluny tatting ranging from basic single colour to 2 or more colours.

 1. Wind the loom as usual and bring weaving shuttle to the right.

2. Move shuttle to the left Under the Warps. *

3. Move shuttle to the right Over the Warps and through the loop.

4. Pull shuttle to tension and ...

5. Slide the unflipped half stitch (hitch) to the base, 
as close to the previous element as possible.
With the Warps tied snuggly together, weaving and shaping becomes easier!

6. Start weaving normally : 2 passes = 1 weave/wrap.

1 tally or Cluny leaf made !

Edwige takes the shuttle Over the 3 threads in step2, then Under and through the loop in step3, before tensioning.
Both ways work equally well, though I find moving the shuttle Under, then Over more convenient.

No colour blip at the base AND the leaf is centered.
The top braid shows the colour blip at the base.
I made some weaving errors in the 2nd tally of the lower braid, 
but the other 3 tallies are pretty close to 'perfection'.

Remember I said the half stitch (both flipped and unflipped didn’t work for me earlier – it would sometimes lock the tally when I started to close it. This happened because I was making that half stitch on only 1 Warp thread, instead of all 3. I may have misunderstood the instructions at the time, but even now they are not clear enough.

When I shared my excitement with Anita, she kindly sent me a video link of Edwige tatting a Cluny leaf on a box loom. I watched it many times but she seems to be starting her weaving directly (without the unflipped stitch). Nevertheless, it is worth watching – she makes it look so quick, easy and perfect! Notice how she removes the top loop and places it on the knob while closing? So the top loop remains on the loom, making it easy to close! Like I showed with the card loom, using the ‘one small step’.

I have found resources that were not listed before or links that no longer work. I will update my Resources page to include them all soon. 

Don’t you love how so many tatters weave their strengths and ideas,
sharing to create perfection around ! 


  1. Thanks to Edwige for sharing and you for showing her method for the start, I'll try it, even if I usually tat with a thin thread and the "little step" at the base is imperceptible. But definitely something to try.

    1. I'm strongly recommending this step for all Cluny leaves - multicoloured or single coloured, Ninetta ;-P Good thing you don't
      need it for tiny threads, though.

  2. Okay, you are really tempting me to pull out my Cluny loom and give this a try. I like the way you use tweezers to create the shed for weaving. As you say, one little extra step can make all the difference!

    1. Oh, it's called a 'shed' - thanks, Diane! I picked whatever was closest and tweezers it was ;-P Hope you do get back to some Cluny tatting, incorporating it around the larger cabochons. A few new patterns never hurt anyone ;-D

  3. Thanks for putting a link to this important post! It makes sense, I can see how the hitch makes for a neat start.

    1. I shudder to think why I didn't notice it before and improve my tallies, Jane ! Better late ...

  4. I'm happy to read your post about Edwige. She is a exceptional tatter. She always makes trials and searches about tatting history and techniques.
    I really admire her.

    1. I've read a bit about her in some of your posts, Lilas :-) You are fortunate to have met and learned from her! My tallies are definitely much better after her tip :-))