I first encountered "cluny" or "petal" in Aunt Ellen's "Tatting Handbook" A Treasury of Techniques and Projects (a Workbasket publication.) Many were the times that I would wrap my hand for the loom, stick my tongue in the left side of my cheek and give it a try. Personally I called it "death grip tatting". Eventually I was able to manage it but my first attempt at a real motif using cluny tatting was less than perfect.
The part tatted in white was done using my hand as a loom. The part tatted in green was woven using a plastic loom. There are several looms posted online which you can make yourself. http://web.archive.org/web/20050309060922/http://www.frontiernet.net/~TamTats/loom-1.html
Here's how to wind the hand loom and weave a tallie or cluny leaf:
Place the previously complete work in the pinch. Bring the ball or shuttle 2 thread across the middle finger and ring finger and back down to the pinch. Allow a loop of thread to dangle down below the pinch (place a space holder or hackle pliers on the loop to prevent premature closing. Bring the thread back up and across the ring finger and anchor it to the little finger with a few ties or wraps.
Take up shuttle 1 (or the tatting needle) and begin to weave the leaf. One pass is a complete trip from the right to the left and back to the right. The pattern will designate the number of wraps.
Take the shuttle over/under/over to the left, then under/over/under back to the right. Use the point of the shuttle/needle or a crochet hook to move the thread tightly down to the point.
Make the leaf get a little wider at the center then taper off again.
Take the tatting off the hand or loom and lay it on the table. There will be one thread going to shuttle one (red in photo), one thread going to the ball or shuttle 2 (white.) There will up a lower loop and an upper loop.
Grasp the left side of the lower loop and pull down until an upper loop is gone.
| Next grasp the ball thread and pull up until the lower loop disappears.|| With practice your cluny leaf will look much finer than mine. Good luck.|
PS. For update info on cluny tatting, visit http://home.netcom.com/~ntrop/mimi/cluny.html