Thursday, October 9, 2008

Tatter's best friend

When I first started tatting I used a metal shuttle with the hook on the end and for many years I wouldn't change. Why you ask? 2 reasons, the first is that I'm embarrassed to say I didn't immediately grasp how you got the thread on the post style shuttles. Please keep in mind that I was using a bobbin style shuttle where you removed the bobbin to wind it. The second reason I wouldn't change was that I was not entirely convinced that a crochet hook would be easier to use than the hook on the shuttle. It just seemed like it would take too long and was one more thing to carry around.
I can't remember why I finally started to use the post style bobbin but now I wouldn't change from my clover tatting shuttles. It seemed onerous at first to use that crochet hook- you have to drop the shuttle and find the hook and it seemed to take so long to do. Now, I don't notice at all and in a very unhygienic manner I keep the hook in a place I won't forget, my mouth. I know, it's gross- can you say orally fixated?
Why am I thinking about this? Because I'm filling in time tatting with my shuttle and hook thinking how much harder this would be if I just had the pick to do joins. Now, I'm sure that there are other tools some tatters use more but I would argue that some sort of hook is an essential tool for tatting. What do you think?


  1. Yes, I do agree. I love my Aero style shuttles with the built-in hooks. BUT I still keep a smaller hook with me when I tat, because sometimes that Aero hook is a bit too large. I can't make the pick on a post shuttle do any thing at all but "pick" me.

  2. I love my tatting shuttles with hooks on the end just for the sake of convenience, too! I have found, however, that when I am tatting with size 80 or 100 tatting thread that the aero style (we won't even speak of "Boye" brand cuz that hook is HUGE,LOL!) hook distort the design when I have to join a chain in a previous join or some other join directly in the design. That's when I have to pick up a size 0.4mm crochet hook (teeny tiny) and the tatted piece looks none the worse for wear. That said, when I'm tatting with smaller threads I have found I don't care what kind of shuttle I'm using because I have to pick up a crochet hook anyway...whew...that was a long one, LOL!

  3. Way, way back 50 years ago I only ever used post shuttles and was forever losing my wretched hooks down the side of sofas!!! I discovered Aero shuttles and Silent Tatters and have never looked for another hook again!!! I do use a VERY fine hook for loading beads sometimes!

  4. I've used all of the shuttles at one point or another but still find the clover easiest to hold and it just feels best in my hand. I can use the pick for joining larger threads but I use a clip on retractable holder on my clothing with a small hook attached. It seems I can make a join as fast as anyone else who has a hook built in. I think whatever you use, you become skilled at it.

    I used to hate threading through the little hole in the post and tying it off and then I learned that a slipknot works so much better. I slide the loop from the slipknot over the shuttle and then the post, tighten and wind. When I'm near the end of the thread, it just slides right off, no picking and cutting at the knot!

  5. I haven't given up my crochet hooks yet... even if I'm using one of my shuttles with a built-in hook! I can build up a pretty good rhythm, and hardly notice that I'm pausing to pick the hook up!


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