Picture of How to Shuttle Tat
I have been tatting for over 20 years, I love it, yet I have been very reluctant to put down in writing how to do it.  Yet when I look at other peoples tutorials, they seem to miss important parts that hung me up until I found someone to teach me.  I have taught many people how to tat and I have several others who want to learn, but getting together has been the challenge.  Tatting has been around for a little over 200 years.  A lot of the best vintage patterns are found in women’s magazines dating from 1930’s and 40’s.  Those patterns are beautiful  and although I do a lot of vintage tatting, I rewrite their patterns and write my own patterns using more modern notations, because they are just easier to read.  So here is my attempt at explaining how to shuttle tat.
Remove these adsRemove these ads by Signing Up

Step 1:

Picture of
Tatting Shuttle (plastic ones are about $2 each)
#10 crochet thread (please make your life easier and get thread that has a strong twist to it, without the twist the knots don’t slide well, and the better they slide the easier it is to tat)

First I will go through the terms you need to understand and then the instructions on how to do them.  Second you need to practice, a lot.

Round- instead of rows
Ds=double stitch
R= ring
P= picot (or “-“on a pattern)
Ch = chain
Round = row
Connect picots = +
RW=Reverse Work

Step 2:

Picture of
Howtotat 28.JPG
Load Shuttle:
Load the shuttle by sticking the end of the thread through the hole in the center of the shuttle and wrap the thread round the shuttle until it is fully loaded.  The pattern will never say this, they assume you already know it.

Step 3:

Picture of
Other terms:
Round:   tatting is done in rounds, going around the center of the design or motif
kkran1 month ago
Would you be willing to share some of your re-written patterns with us? I have been doing some needle tatting, by I am excited to learn how to use the shuttle like my great grandmother used to do!
craftknowitall (author)  kkran1 month ago
i really don't have very many that I have rewritten. I think the two main ones have been published. I buy books with the patterns I use and I follow Tat-a-Renda found here: She is really good with the patterns. I love it! Thanks for asking.
MicioGatta6 months ago

I found this guide throught Google while I was making an 'ible guide about tatting (I've learnt to tatting long ago, before Internet was diffused in my Country ;D). I've quoted you:

craftknowitall (author)  MicioGatta6 months ago

Thank you, your Instructable looks great!

candi11 year ago
agis681 year ago
Awsome!!!! Always i admire people doing these!!!! Sorry but i have luck of patience
octochan1 year ago
Sorry, I can't figure out how to make the second half of a ds from the picture and instructions on that part of the instructable.
craftknowitall (author)  octochan1 year ago
Revisit step 13, I have added another picture and more instructions. The second half is the easiest of the two halves. Hope this helps.
Thanks! I eventually figured it out, but I think the instructions should read that you pass the shuttle from the left to right under the thread.
ChrysN1 year ago
Thanks for the great instructions, I have one of those shuttles, now I just need to find the time to try it out.
craftknowitall (author)  ChrysN1 year ago
Don't get discouraged, once you start, keep working on it. It takes a while for your hands to get used to the new positions. One reason I love to tat is that you can keep a project in your pocket or a little ziplock bag in your purse. You can pick in up and work on it any time. Hope it works for you! Thanks for looking.