Important factors in choosing tatting patterns are the tatter’s level of experience and the amount of detail the pattern includes. Pattern instructions may be available online, which might work well for experienced crafters. Others may prefer traditional printed pages, with pictorial details, that can be referred to as the project progresses. Costs for patterns can vary, and the estimated project time should also be considered.
Tatting is a needlework craft that produces lace from a variety of threads. Loops and knots are created with shuttles, needles, or even small crochet hooks. Patterns provide information on the types of stitches, and number or repetitions for each row needed to complete a project. More advanced patterns may only use a series of letters, numbers, and symbols instead of words and sequences. Beginners may find this abbreviation of stitch names and other processes confusing.
In almost any needlework, the instructions provided with patterns can differ in their quality and detail. Beginners may wish to start with a book that offers a lot of detail on lace-making and includes information on the threads, needles, and shuttles required. Advice on choosing the thickness and type of thread can also be important to the outcome of the project. Those new to this form of needlework usually find the additional information valuable as they progress in the craft. Picture diagrams of the steps may prevent tatters from losing their places over the course of the project.
Choosing between tatting patterns for an item you want to make can be important, particularly for less experienced tatters. Some pattern instructions may only provide one set of details, with side notes for variations of the project. Those who are very familiar with the craft may be able to adjust the directions to create their own unique item. Having complete tatting instructions for each variation can make construction easier for novices.
Doilies, Christmas tree ornaments, table runners, purses, and even jewelry can be made by tatting. Tatting patterns for many of the easier projects can be found online. Ornate or vintage patterns may be costly, however. Those with a great deal of tatting experience may find that creating their own patterns can provide greater satisfaction.
In addition to the tools and threads required, many tatting patterns offer an estimated time for completion of the project. For someone looking for a simple craft that can be completed in a short amount of time, this information is useful. A lengthy project should allow crafters to mark the instructions, enabling an individual to know where she stopped for a seamless completion.