I don't understand why anyone would tat with a shuttle.
No offense. Truly.
But seriously, in my opinion, shuttle tatting is the absolute most confusing and frustrating thing ever, and needle tatting is so beautifully easy!
I get the theory behind shuttle tatting. I can make the stitches "flip" with no problem. I can even make a decent looking chain and/or ring, whichever I start with...and then I RW and suddenly I'm in shuttle tatting hell.
With the needle, I can see every stitch I make, right there on the needle. Before I commit myself to a ring or chain I can think:
Did I add or leave out a double stitch? Is one picot larger or smaller than the rest? No problem! Just slip the stitches off the needle and start again.
|Oops! I made a mistake! Lucky for me it's SO easy to see/fix them!|
Did I leave a small space between the ring and chain when I reverse worked my motif? No I did not, because I can actually see what I am tatting! (If you are tatting to the point you are pinching between thumb and forefinger, how can you see what you are doing?!)
|The beginning of a picot in needle tatting. You can see everything.|
|This is actually the second half of a picot from the shuttle...can you tell? Of course not! All the tatting I've done is hidden behind my fat thumbs!|
|Just find the middle thread and...|
|...slide off the mistake!|
|Ok so far...|
|Where did my ring go? I can't see it!|
|Ooh, a ring AND a chain...amazing. Except the double-stiches are backwards, so I have no idea how I'm going to join to that picot. GAH!|
Well, shuttle tatting seems to lend itself to two-color tatting much more easily than needle tatting does. And I haven't been able to figure out all those two+ shuttle patterns for the needle yet, and I'd like to stop automatically skipping those patterns in all my books.
But seriously. Grr. I have a mountain of "mess-ups" around my chair and I'm pretty sure my blood pressure is severely elevated right now.
I wonder if part of the problem is that I shuttle tat left handed. I discovered last summer that shuttle tatting with the right hand (the hand I write and throw with) didn't work for me, because with needle tatting I'm used to most of the movement coming from the left hand, not the right...so when I tried to use my left hand to build the lace and my right hand to manipulate the shuttle, it was a knotty disaster...
So I tried left hand tatting and, voila, I could actually make a decent double-stitch.
Trouble is, now everything is backwards and confusing.
SO, I think I'm probably going to stick with the needle. Some people say there is a big difference between the two, but I don't really see it...
Do you? Which is which?
|(Can you even tell? The picture quality isn't all that wonderful)|
Also, any pointers you shuttlers out there have for a poor struggling needle tatter trying to crack the shuttle code?