Sunday, March 29, 2009

An interesting challenge

A few weeks ago there was a discussion on In-Tatters about which one is faster shuttle or needle tatting. I do both but I prefer the shuttle tatting. So now that I don't have TV I took the chance to make the challenge. This is how I did it. I tatted the same motif with the needle and then with the shuttle. The motif is:

R: 3-(+)3-3-3.
CH: 5-5.

Repeating until 10 rings and chains were done.

It's a pattern so common that I know by heart. So here are the results.

With the needle it took me 21 minutes.
With the shuttle it took me 11 minutes.

The difference is 10 minutes! There are some things to take in consideration. First, with the needle I notice I spend more time pulling the long amount of thread (I used 2 yards). This slow me a lot, I think. Also the method I use to join to the picots could be a factor in the speed. I join to the picots in the same way I join with the shuttles. Some people join to picots, while needle tatting, just passing the needle through the picot or placing the picot on the needle and continue working. Something interesting I found was the finished size of the medallions. I was thinking that the shuttle motif was going to be smaller, but it was the contrary! I think the problem are the size of the picots. I was able to make smaller picots with the needle than with the shuttle. Very interesting... One thing I don't like of needle tatting is calculating the amount of thread needed to work from the needle. I do "real" rings when I needle tat, so this uses more thread than if you do the mock rings. So I always miscalculate the amount of thread, usually I'm left with a lot of thread. then with this tails I have to make butterflies or something.

It was a very interesting challenge none the less. Have anyone else done the challenge?


Jane Eborall said...

VERY interesting experiment. I like the look of the shuttle tatted piece much more than the needle one. It looks 'crisper'.

TattingChic said...

Oh, I love the flow of my hands with the shuttle and thread. I'm not willing to throw a spiky ol' needle into the mix! I know it'll break the flow! :)

TAT19540 said...

I do both. I perfer the needle, and I can move faster with the needle than the shuttle. When I did shuttle only I was faster on the shuttle. I think it is what you use the most is what you are going to be faster on. As far as look- if you use as smallest needle as possible the results are the same. Some shuttle techniques are easier when needle tatted, but needle tatting as well as shuttle look better with 20 or smaller threads. I find your experiment fun and your results interesting.


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