This design uses 2 sizes of thread. Size 80: shuttle only. Size 20: Shuttle and ball wound CTM. Sample snowflake was worked in DMC tatting cotton size 80 in colors 352 and 745, size 20 Manuela in white and measures 3.7 inches point-to-point.
Use size 80 thread and 1 shuttle:
R 12-12, R 7-7, R 7-7, R 12-12.
Tie ends together in a reef knot and trim to form antennae. Make 6 butterflies, set aside. I made three butterflies in each of two different colors, but I think this would look great with all one color or six different colors of butterfly!
Use size 20 thread, shuttle and ball wound CTM:
R 2-2-2-2-2-2 close. Picots on this ring should be fairly long (mine are about 1/3 of an inch open, 1/6 of an inch closed). All other picots are for joining only and should be very small.
Leave a space (mock picot) and make a lock stitch before starting chains.
Ch [6 lj] 6 times around
Ch [9 lj] 6 times around
* Ch 3+(join to left small butterfly wing) 6+(join to right small wing of same
butterfly) 3 lj Repeat from * 5 more times.
Ch 3±9+(join to left wing) shoelace trick, RW [direction of chain changes here]
Ch 6-3 RW
R 9-3 RW
Ch 3 RW
Clover: R 3+6-3, R 3+9-3, R 3+6-3 RW
Ch 3 RW
R 3+9 RW
Ch 3+6+(join to right wing), shoelace trick, RW [direction of chain changes here]
Ch 9-3 lj
Repeat for a total of six points, joining final chain of 6th point to first chain of 1st point. Cut, tie and finish ends.
The snowflake goes around the center several times, but it’s all one "round" in that you only cut and tie once at the very end. Only one set of ends to hide, since the butterflies display their ends proudly!
Instead of performing the shoelace trick to reverse the chains, use two shuttles. You can pull several yards off of the ball, cut and wind them onto a second shuttle when finished with the rosette part of the flake. At the point where the chain direction is reversed simply switch shuttles. To get a slightly nicer join at this point, pull a loop of shuttle 1 thread through the picot on the butterfly wing, then put shuttle 2 through the loop and pull tight. Make this join with the "right side" facing to keep the little dots of contrast color all on one side. The rings and clover on the points would then all be worked with shuttle 2.
lj = Lock join: Make sure chain stitches are snugged up tight before making this join. Bring a loop of shuttle thread through joining point and put shuttle through this loop. Pull tight. After the first six (which are joined to the picots of the original ring), all lock joins are joined to the little bit of ball thread between the end stitches of the chains in the previous round. To make it easier you could make a tiny picot at this point, otherwise just dig your hook in as if there were a picot, there’s plenty of joining space there.
Lock stitch: Make a double stitch. Do not allow the first half of the stitch to flip, make the second half of the stitch normally.
Shoelace trick: Make an overhand knot: cross shuttle thread over ball thread, put shuttle through loop thus formed and pull both ends. This is like step 1 of tying your shoes.
Here's a closeup of the points being worked. Notice that the flake is pretty ruffly, it needs blocking to lie flat. Also, I haven't trimmed the antennae, I do that after blocking to keep them all even and looking nice. In this photo I have just finished the inward-facing chain, and am about to do the shoelace trick and then a shuttle join to the next wing picot.
Designed and tatted by Emma Crew for the first snowflake round robin, July 2001.
© Emma Crew, 2001
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