Friday, June 13, 2014

Off the Shuttle: Tatted Edging with Beads for Vintage Handkerchief

I'm once again trying to clear out my works-in-progress collection and pulled out a piece of tatted edging to see if I could finally get it off the shuttle. The tatting pattern is the classic "Hen and Chicks," an edging of a series of large and small rings, that's found on vintage linens and is one of the patterns that a lot of beginners start with. I started this edging a few years ago, and for some reason now forgotten, put it aside still attached to the shuttle. I had substituted tiny beads for the picots that border the large rings. I love making tatted edgings, and I have a big collection of vintage handkerchiefs (thank you, eBay!) that I pair up with the edgings. I determined that, yes, the piece was long enough to fit on a hanky, in fact, it was slightly longer than I needed. Great, I don't have to do any more tatting to put it to use. 

Now, to find a handkerchief that would coordinate with the edging. This one embellished with a machine-embroidered orchid came closest to looking right with the lavender edging. Because most of the handkerchiefs I have are old and many have been actually put to use at some time, they aren't always in pristine condition. This one had a scalloped edge with purple overcast machine-stitching on the edge instead of a hem. The stitching had come detached in several places. It's usually tricky to put an edging on an unstraight hem in the first place, but when the edge is coming apart it's usually not possible to make it look good without some repair work.

Recently, for another project, I had decided to learn how to do hand-stitched rolled hems by watching YouTube videos. This hanky was a good project to learn on before I move on to larger pieces like scarves. Making rolled hems is surprisingly easy once you see how it's done. And there are online videos for both left- and right-handed stitchers. Once I finished the hemming, it was just a matter of hand sewing on the tatting and getting the two ends of the tatting to match up. So finishing this project was a case of a lot of hand stitching rather than tatting. (Thank goodness for audio books.)

All the materials used were long-time residents of my stash. The thread I used is Manuela size 20 tatting cotton, color M013. This is a German-made thread that seems to be discontinued and no longer available. The seed beads are size 11/0 Delicas in a shiny deep purple shade. And the sewing thread I used to sew on the edging was a Talon brand so old that it's on a wooden spool. Not sure when wooden spools were phased out, but it's been a while. I love these projects where everything I need is in my stash.


Madtatter80 said...

Oh this is beautiful and love the small amount of beads on it too colors are so nice. I got my beautiful thread today and have plans for it already :)

Julie Romero said...

That is really lovely...beautiful to see! I always enjoy your posts!!!