Monday, 3 August 2009

Lace Exhibition

On Saturday I bunked work and went to the Cape Lace Guild's exhibition.


Alongside the more traditional lace was this piece, based on a cross-section of a plant stem:


A piece of what was described as 'modern' lace, which has a decidedly vintage "mid-century mod" look about it:


These pieces are made with sewing thread; they're so finely worked that they seem to have been made with variegated thread. But these are solid colours.


There was some lovely tatting on display too:


There are more photos on my Flickr page.

I hauled out some old craft books and scoured the internet for tatting instructions, being pretty sure that somebody would have come up with a way to do it without a tatting shuttle (it was Saturday evening, and I wanted to do this now). Turns out you can tat with a bit of card for a shuttle, and it's really easy.

Really easy, that is, once you give up on illustrated instructions and head for YouTube. There seems to be some sort of conspiracy going on with the illustrations. They make no sense, but have been drawn the same way for decades. The tatting elite seem to want to force you to learn from a real person, instead of a book. I will remedy this as soon as I have time: bad craft illustrations annoy me. All you need are a few slightly longer twisty arrows, people.

23 comments:

Wendren said...

Gorgeous!

lula cat said...

ah wow!
I also want to tatt..tatting.
Funny word.
I still can't understand crochet, this would be a nightmare to me!

Carina said...

Lovely, Jesse.

My grandma used to do this, she was REALLY good at it. Unfortunately, I had very little interest in such things before she died 7 years ago. I really wish I'd had been wiser and learnt from her while time was. Maybe I will one day... You are definitely inspiring me. :-)

nicole said...

Well, speaking as someone who knows how to tat and do bobbin lace I can say that bobbin lace looks more complicated and needs more equipment but it's much easier to learn the basics (cross and twist, that's all) while with tatting you have to understand that there's a flip happening where the knot transfers from one thread to the other, and that's hard to draw because it's two things happening at the same time... you can feel it happening when you're tatting and you can see it happening when you watch it but drawing it is difficult, so I'm looking forward to your illustrations and hope you do manage to draw it. But trust me, there's no conspiracy, we don't want to make you learn from an actual person.

L'Atelier said...

gorgeous, can't wait to see your remedy!

Gallery32 said...

I used to know how to tat, but thinking about it now I can't remember how to begin. I will wait patiently for your remedy :)

alex sunday said...

phwor! love that plant stem cross section! (but i'm not sure how to spell "phwor" - i hope you know what i mean). :)

Freshly Found said...

Wow! Love the modern lace work too.
Good luck with the tatting. It has always looked way too complicated for me to try. Maybe it is those bad illustrations! Look forward to seeing what you do!

Jesse said...

It's going to be a little while before I have time to tackle tatting drawings, so please don't wait for them! I strongly suggest searching YouTube for tatting videos - they do demystify the process wonderfully.

Sorry I vented my frustration, and came across so arrogantly. I didn't mean to suggest that tatting is easy, rather that is simple once you understand how it's done. And I do think it's best to learn from a real person, but if like me you want to understand it at 2am on a weekend, the internet is the only option.

Nicole, thanks for your comment. That's exactly what I mean - you explained that the stitch flips from one thread to the other, and none of the written instructions I found did. I've tried for years to learn from books, always getting stuck at that point.

Jane Eborall said...

Oooh, I assure you there's no conspiracy going on to try and stop people learning to tat. Quite the contrary. The only problem is (this is a warning!!) that it's very addictive!!! It isn't easy to 'see' the flip that you need to do when shuttle tatting BUT once you've 'got' this the rest is very easy.
You will be welcomed into tat land with open arms and the sooner the better!!! There are always new things to be learnt about tatting and the craft progresses all the time. Lovely new exciting patterns using colours, beads etc.
Enough of my rambling. DO pop over to my corner of tat land!!!!
Jane - http://janeeborall.blogspot.com/

Yardwork said...

Learning on youtube is an interesting phenomenon, isn't it? I've been doing a lot of it lately.

These lace pictures are truly inspiring!

Linda said...

Good directions would be so fabulous. I am over 50. I have done textile arts since I was 10. I knit, crochet, embroider, quilt and sew. I have never been able to figure out tatting (and I have my grandmothers shuttle around here someplace). The only craft I have NOT been able to figure out is tatting. I would be thrilled to have better instructions.

Kate said...

Cor - looks like an amazing exhibition. I too find tatting mystifying. Bring on the arrows.

Pinktulip said...

Wow! I am often so amazed at what artistic people can create! The cross-section of a plant stem? I would never even think about it! Love the tatting!

Francesca said...

oh my goodness, amazing lace! so stunning. thanks for posting these. very inspiring. x

Krystle said...

Hey, have you heard of needle tatting? No shuttle, no flip. Good job though, I saw your first tries a few posts up, I'd call them successes.

-Krystle

Teegs said...

Yay for lace making! I'm totally In love with it.

I was sitting in front of my (bobbin) lace pillow (just about to work a square of ground before bed) when my friend emailed me a link to your post! :-)

❦TattingChic said...

That is a lovely example of tatted lace. I can see why it inspired you!

JudyP said...

I learned to tat from the internet. It's not hard. After I got into it, I realized I had no real use for this stuff laying around my house gathering dust so I only do little things like doves and butterflies for the little kids that come to see what I'm doing. It's easy to take along, no sharp objects needed, and gives you something quick to do while waiting on kids to get done with sports. Keeps my hands busy if nothing else.
I would love to learn the spool lacemaking... but not sure what I would do with it either

kim kruse - - - the sassy crafter said...

Lovely photos -- thanks for sharing! I seem to recall that tatting can also be done on a single needle and that it's simpler for beginners to understand. Does anyone here use that technique?

Bevy said...

Beautiful...what a lost art!

banrionthreads said...

Beautiful pics!

If you need a decent reference for tatting, check out The Step-by-Step Needlecraft Encyclopedia by Judy Brittain, ISBN 0517140683. Its section on tatting is the only place I've seen written instructions regarding that thread flip. Cheers!

Labores y Manualidades de Caterine said...

Que trabajo mas bonito, me gusta mucho