Introduction: Learn Needle Tatting With My Flower Pendant

Picture of Learn Needle Tatting With My Flower Pendant

Sure my mask is cool, but it's not for the beginner. This is a beginners project with needle tatting. Making this simple flower pendant will teach you some of the basics of needle tatting. No knowledge of tatting is needed, but knowledge of other fiber crafts such as knitting and crochet may be helpful in understanding pattern construction.

You will need a size 5 tatting needle and size 10 crochet cotton thread. Though using any thread and matching needle will simply create different sized flowers.

This is not a comprehensive guide to needle tatting. This project will teach you to work with thread on the ball, which mimics two shuttle tatting. There is also working with cut thread that mimics one shuttle tatting and there are many more advanced techniques you can learn as well.

Step 1: The Double Stitch Part 1

Picture of The Double Stitch Part 1

Tatting is generally made up of one stitch, the double stitch(ds) separated by picots. This stitch is used to make the rings and chains that are the main structure of all tatting.

1. Thread the needle from the ball leaving a tail about 16 inches long.

2. Hold the working thread (thread from the ball, not the tail) near the end of the needle with your right index finger. You can release the thread as soon as soon as the first ds is made.

Step 2: The First Half of the Double Stitch

Picture of The First Half of the Double Stitch

1. While hanging on to the thread with your other three fingers, wrap the thread clockwise around the back of your index finger

2. Slide the needle under the thread up toward the tip of your finger. Remove finger and tighten the loop onto the needle. This is the first half of the ds

Step 3: Second Half of the Double Stitch

Picture of Second Half of the Double Stitch

For the second half of the ds, we do the opposite. Wrap the thread around your index finger counter-clockwise, slide the needle under the thread toward the tip of your finger. Slide the loop next to the first loop and tighten.

You might notice that this is in fact just a half hitch knot.

Step 4: Creating a Picot

Picture of Creating a Picot

1. After completing a ds, make the first half of the next ds, but instead of sliding the the stitch next to the first ds, hold the loop about a 1/2 inch away while making the second half of the ds.

2. Slide the completed ds next to the first ds. The small loop created between them is a Picot

Step 5: Creating a Ring

Picture of Creating a Ring

1. Create any number of ds with any number of picots. For our flower pendant, make a ring consisting of six ds with a long picot(1 inch) followed by six more ds.

2. Slide the ds off the needle onto the thread that is in the eye of the needle, keeping the loop forming at the end from closing by placing your pinky in the loop.

3. Bring the needle tip through the loop and pull the loop closed. This is referred to as 'close the ring' in written patterns

4. The last step is to turn the ring over and tie a knot at the top. This is referred to as reverse work or rw.

Step 6: Creating a Chain

Picture of Creating a Chain

1. Place the needle at the last knot made on your ring. A chain is generally only created after a ring.

2. Create any number of ds and picots. For our flower pendant, chain 6ds, 1 picot(p) 6 ds.

3. Slide the ds off the needle onto the thread in the eye of the needle. Pull the thread all the way through so that the chain lies right next to the ring.

4. As with the ring, turn the chain over and tie a knot (rw). Occasionally a ring or chain isn't reversed after closing, but a knot is still tied. The right and left thread do not change place when the knot is tied this way.

Step 7: Making the Flower

Picture of Making the Flower

Continuing to make the flower, you should have one ring and one chain.

1. Make a ring 6 ds and join to the long picot of your first ring by using the tip of the needle to pull the working thread through the picot. Finish the ring with 6ds, close and rw.

2. Next make another chain the same as the first, 6ds, 1p, 6d close and rw

3. Continue in this manner until you 5 rings and 4 chains.

Step 8: Finishing the Flower

Picture of Finishing the Flower

1. Make the final chain in the same way, but after you close join to the first ring you made by bringing the needle through the knot in the ring.

2. To Finish tie a double knot and cut the thread from the ball leaving enough tail to hide. Hide each end by putting the needle through a few stitches in either the closest ring or chain and pulling the thread through. Cut off the remainder.

3. To make the flower a pendant, simply add a jump ring to one of the outer picots.

You can make this simple design in any color or size you like, you can also join flowers together at the outer picots to form chains or add seed beads to the picots for a little bling.


Goldie77 (author)2017-09-06

Thank you so much for this tutorial. I just picked this craft up on a whim and I've been using your tutorial to nail down the basics.

SueR77 (author)2017-02-04

I love this design and tutorial, just wondered after you close the ring and reverse the work whether you need to flip it back and start the next stage---or just carry on?

TotusMel (author)SueR772017-02-04

Thanks, after you reverse work you continue on from there. It becomes easier to see which direction you should be going as you get further along.

SueR77 (author)TotusMel2017-02-05

Thanks very much for your speedy reply, I didn't know if Tatting had a right and a wrong side.

MariK14 made it! (author)2016-11-29

Great tutorial!
Thank you very much :)

KarenH169 made it! (author)2016-05-15

my first ever attempt at tatting! Fantastic tutorial. Thank you so much

AliceR27 (author)2016-04-07

Hello From Denmark :)

I just learned about tatting a couple of weeks ago. I wanted to try, but wanted to try with the needle first. Maybe I will try the shutter as well at some point :) Anyway... I´ve been looking for days, for videoes, sites and patterns for a total newbee.... And here you are :D This morning I tryed a pattern from what I had learned arround the internet. It was ok, but I was not completely satisfied with the result. then i stumbled uppon your site, and everything just fell into place, about the joining af the chains and rings, about the RW! I thought I as suppose to turn the work arround and work from there :D No wonder it looks a little clumsy at my first try ;) This flower is perfect. So good to begin with, and I can see how I can work with this pattern for a couple of things allready.

Thank you <3

viccro (author)2012-12-17

I really appreciate that you used the term "half hitch"! Everything makes more sense...I think.

You're actually just creating many girth hitches, yes? And then sliding the girth hitches back onto the standing end, which you put through the eye to make it easier to draw through the girth hitches?

This would imply that you want your needle to have the same diameter as the thread; is this correct?

yoyology (author)viccro2016-02-17

Another name for a paired half-hitch like the ones used in tatting is "lark's head". Evidently "cow hitch" as well.

TotusMel (author)viccro2012-12-22

Sorry for the delayed response. I'm wasn't familiar with girth hitches so I looked them up and it does certainly appear to be the same basic structure. Yes, for the best look the needle should be the same width as the thread you are using.

yoyology made it! (author)2016-02-17

This was my first try. I stopped at five petals because my tail wasn't long enough. :-) Thank you for your clear instructions and video. My next step is to try two colors and then make a butterfly.

As I'm searching for patterns online, I'm finding a lot that are designed for shuttle tatting. Can these be easily converted to needle work?


TotusMel (author)yoyology2016-02-17

Yes, most shuttle patterns are easily worked with the needle.You may have to ignore some shuttle specific instructions and figure out where to close(tie) and reverse work, but the ds stitch counts for rings and chains will be the same.

pmacko3 made it! (author)2016-02-05

This was the best set of instrctions I have found. Not perfect but not bad for my very first attempt.

CarolP36 (author)2016-01-20

Thank you. Was having a terrible time closing rings, got it last night with this tutorial \pattern. Actually, made 2 last night in mint green, thinking of using ear wires and wear to work tomorrow. Quiet different from crocheting which I've done for over 50 years.

ChelseaM21 (author)2015-12-01

Argh! I finished the stitches for the first ring but when I tried to slide them off and close loop, the stitches got stuck right at the end of the needle and wouldn't move in any direction. what am I doing wrong? :(

TotusMel (author)ChelseaM212015-12-01

Most tatting needles are nearly the same width at both end so this usually doesn't happen, but it can if your stitches are too tight. Try making them just a bit looser and you should be good.

SabrinaM4 made it! (author)2015-08-18

Love the pretty flower! Instructions were great and easy to follow. Thanks for sharing. Here is my very first tatting project. I used a multi-colored thread and it worked well. Gonna try it in a solid color and perhaps use it as a decal on my bag.

TotusMel (author)SabrinaM42015-08-18

Nice work!

Nutmeggles (author)2015-07-20

I love this pretty little flower pendant. The instructions are easy to follow, and really well explained. Thank you for sharing this with the world. I am going to try this now.

Kindest regards


TotusMel (author)Nutmeggles2015-07-20


xie made it! (author)2015-03-16

This was a great way to learn needle-tatting. Thanks so much for the instructable. :D

Lady Vania (author)2014-12-29

Thank you for your tutorial! I had some confusion with connecting the chains and loops, but I watched your video and figured it out :) pardon the pajamas, but I wanted to show you!

Dena LaRae (author)2013-02-05

Brand new to tatting. Once I figured out I was to be tatting on the ball finishing chains went much better! Thanks for posting this and your video! So much help!
ps I love your new stuff on Etsy! may try the choker 'tenebrous' (eventually) to go with my barefoot sandals and wrist cuff!

emilyvanleemput (author)2012-11-27


twighahn (author)2012-10-14

may Adonai bless you i have been searching high and low for this tysvvvm

parisjea (author)2012-09-15

Your hands are beautiful because you create beauty with them.

KathyFuller (author)2012-06-21

YIPPEE!!! I just finished this project. Thank you so much for posting the step by step instructions, as well as your full video tutorial on youtube. I am truly amazed I was able to complete the project in such a small amount of time. Of course, I did practice a little while, but still, it was really easy and fast for me. :) Thanks, again!!

TotusMel (author)KathyFuller2012-06-22

Congrats & have fun tatting!

KathyFuller (author)TotusMel2012-06-22

Thanks!! I will!!! I just have to find some more patterns for a novice. :)

bouder (author)2012-06-01

Your designs are so beautiful! As soon as I can get all the materials together (not sure where to find a needle) I will try my hand at your flower. I'm so impatient, tho, and wish I was an expert already! LOL! Thank you for your tutorials!

nettlesnook (author)2012-04-28

Thank you for sharing your pattern. Your work is beautiful. Although I have never tatted, I've started your mask. This is a must have for the Prom Masquerade I am chaperoning. Your tutorials are very helpful.

TotusMel (author)nettlesnook2012-04-30

Thanks so much and good luck!

vivensmortua (author)2012-03-24

How many ds and p do we do for the first ring, in the steps before the making of the ring and then the chain?

TotusMel (author)vivensmortua2012-03-25

The stitch counts for the flower are in step 5. Both the rings and chains are 6ds 1p 6ds

chauser (author)2012-03-13

i love your patterns they are what inspired me to learn to tat do you know of a place i can find this pattern for shuttle tatting? thank you so much for all the beautiful patterns i cannot wait to try the mustache necklace!

TotusMel (author)chauser2012-03-17

Patterns for needle and shuttle tatting are basically the same, the only difference being that most needle tatting patterns need to be worked with two shuttles.

chauser (author)TotusMel2012-03-18

thank you so much!

Patina Moon (author)2012-02-22

Hi, love your work!
Your instructions are great, I just can't seem to get it through my head how to rw at the end of the chain and tie a knot? I got the first ring ok, but at the end of the chain is where I'm stuck...thanks.

jusyjus87 (author)2012-01-11

It's great and it's easy, I'd like it so much)

Leo4613 (author)2011-11-11

Great walk through ! I'll have to try again with the right needle.
Thank you for sharing! :) :)

sanyogita (author)2011-08-14

thanks TotusMel. I had learnt how to tat with my grand ma and was totally intregued,by needle tatting .i tried and tried till i got it right it is so much easier than using the shuttle. thanks again !!

starlightwings (author)2011-07-15

I had trouble getting the where the ball of thread side goes and where the tail goes in relationship to the needle. I needed to see the ball of thread the entire time in the pictures.
 If you are able to get the double stitch part right but having trouble getting the get it off the needle and into a nice ring part try this website:

Green Fuzzer Tatting 

excentricmovie (author)2011-05-09

This looks like so much fun! One question tho: how long should these main ds be?

skiminoangel (author)2011-04-10

I am just starting to learn how to tat and was wondering if these directions would be able to be followed with a shuttle. I was just going to try one thing at a time and see how far that got me!

tatihana00 (author)2009-05-24

i made the flower and because of the it i was able to understand the other ones. took a full day to finish the other one, but i really wanted to thank you for opening doors to a wonderful world of tatting. *grin*

I love the purple and white thread, but wish it were a better close up as I wanted to really see what you had there. Looks very nice.

thank you very much. the picture i took was with an old camera phone. the long tatting item you see (that is very blurry) is a necklace. i found an old instructable. there is one with someone using yarn, but with the multi colors it's harder to follow along. this was the only thread in my house at the time. anyhow, i'll make another and be sure to use my partner's camera next time.

NaturalCrafter (author)2011-04-06

Watching your video with the looping, it reminded me of macrame' but in miniature. Thanks for taking the time to make a great video.

crochetrose (author)2011-04-06

I have just started tatting-only tried twice so far and mine is actually somewhat starting to look like yours. I am excited. I have been crocheting for 30+ years and always wanted to learn. Your tatting is absolutely beautiful and your video is great!!!!!

crak-a-bottle (author)2011-04-05

they're verrrrry pretty, although sadly I don't understand anything involving a needle. What's the book in the the first picture, out of curiosity? :)

About This Instructable




Bio: I'm a tattooed needle tatter, a stay at home mom and a homeschooler. I sell my work on etsy. I hope to offer a ... More »
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