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Front and back side tatting

Does front and back side tatting? Oh yes of course! Are you surprised? Often novice tatters do not pay attention to this nuance. However, following this rule will help you make your lace more neat and presentable. Want to test yourself? Look carefully at these photos. Which of these earrings do you think is right? You can write your option in the comments, please!

The correct earrings in photo 1 and 4. Let’s see what is wrong with earrings 2 and 3? All rings in earrings 2 and 3 are made wrong, unfortunately. Therefore, picots at the rings in these cases look messy. Compare lilac earrings with red earrings. The difference is obvious! Do you agree?

I do not get tired of repeating this rule to my students, and I always write this reminder in the instructions for my patterns:

When making the double stitches on the back side, make the second half of the second stitch fixture and the first half of the double stitch next

So, if you are not yet using this rule in your tatting, try it! I am sure you will like the new look of your lace. Such work requires more focus and attention, of course. But it’s worth it. Because the front and back side of your tatting will turn out perfect! But again, each tatter chooses a method that he likes best.

I want to draw your attention to the following fact. I did not come up with this method, of course. This method has existed for a long time. Not everyone pays attention to the differences as a result of the first and second method.
This is an excerpt from Book 6 “Tatting Talk: A Self-Improvement Guide for Tatters” Needle Tatting Basics Part 2 by Georgia Seitz revised 6-21-98:
Remember, if you prefer the all right side up look, just do the half stitches in reverse order.
And, of course, I suggest visiting the blog from Frivole: http://leblogdefrivole.blogspot.com/2016/02/reverse-stitches.html The article is very interesting and reveals deeper terminology (I did not try to make my post so professional).

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10 thoughts on “Front and back side tatting

  1. Excellent idea! Such beautiful work.

    1. Thank You, dear Polina, for kind words!

  2. What does your sentence mean.
    Does front and backside tatting?
    Does it what?

    1. Is there front and back tatting? Are they different? Yes, they are, Karen.

  3. I for one do not like front side back side tatting. I think that it makes the tatting look chunky instead of delicate. For a few hundred years there was no front side backside and you saying that because you like it then the way it was done for hundreds of years is wrong is a bit over the top. It is a technique not a rule. You like it, fine like it, but don’t go so far as to say that someone who doesn’t like it is doing it wrong. We are just using a different technique, one that worked fine for a very long time.

    1. I’m not trying to imply that there’s a wrong way or the right way. Everyone does tatting in their own way. I just wanted to show that the tatting technique may be different. Over the centuries of tatting things have been changing. Trying newer ways makes it even more exciting. It’s up to you to change it or keep doing it the old way.

  4. I mainly use front side back side but simply because I scan my work for the blog posts. In actual fact I don’t think it’s a ‘must do’ at all and may put some people off if it’s stressed too much to a learner. If I’m making for a non tatter and it’s a doily/small motif/coaster etc then they’re going to plonk it down with no regard to what we sometimes call ‘front’ or ‘back’. For people like that and doilies in particular I don’t bother about what is ‘right or ‘wrong’ – both sides are right! I use the traditional way of always starting with the first half of the double. There’s no mention of a right or wrong side in any of the old books/patterns. It’s a useful technique to use SOMETIMES but not the only way to tat.

    1. Naturally, everyone tatters uses a method that is more convenient. I just wanted to show that there are some subtleties of tatting that you may like.

  5. For me, it is situational. For a brooch, bs/fs is a good idea. For a Christmas ornament I just tat. It could be viewed from both sides. And, I think we are only doing it for each other, few others would notice. But, there are a lot of things I do that I know I’m the only one who will notice. 😉

    1. Oh yeah! Few people will notice these little things. But I notice that! 🙂

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