Tatting False Plaits
Step 1. Start with 4 shuttles, each pair CTM. For practice, just put a few yards on each shuttle and 5-6 beads on one shuttle of each pair.
Step 2. Make a slipknot with one pair of shuttles and slide one shuttle from the second pair through the slipknot.
Step 3. Pull the slipknot tight and feel the “pop”. This is the weaver’s knot and will be tiny and tight.
Step 4. For the first split ring, hold where the shuttles are all joined as your pinch point and have one bead on the thread around your hand. Start the first half of the split ring, 8 ds.
Step 5. Slide the bead up towards your pinch point before you start the 2nd half of the split ring. For the 2nd half of the split ring, I start with the 2nd half of the ds and continue in that order for all 8 ds.
Step 6. The ring is still open. Take the 2 unused shuttles and slide them through the ring from back to front.
Step 7. Close the ring. Snug up the threads from the shuttles you just pulled through and make sure your bead shuttle is on the right, where you will start your next split ring. Move the shuttles you just used for the 1st split ring to a position where they will not bother you. Some put them in a scrunchie on the left wrist. I put them in a little drawstring pouch. If you don’t, they will tend to get tangled with the working shuttles.
Step 8. Using the new shuttles just pulled through the ring, start a second split ring. Be sure to have your bead in place. Start your first ds just inside the previous ring. If it’s outside the ring or on the outer edge, your rings will gap. It’s very difficult to keep that gap a consistent length so it’s better to start it inside. Slide the bead up and do the 2nd half of the split ring.
Step 9. Before closing the ring, pull the unused shuttles through. You might have to straighten them after the ring is closed. Put the shuttles you just finished with aside.
Step 10. Again, start your next ring just inside the previous ring.
Step 11. Continue in like manner for length desired.
Back side of plait
Front side of plait
For the butterfly slide necklace, I put about 8 yards on each shuttle but 10 would be better. I wasn’t sure how much it would hold with the beads strung. I threaded 100 beads for each set and put 50 beads on each shuttle. When you do split rings, the carrying thread shuttle consumed thread faster than the second one, so when I used all the beads from the first shuttle, I did the shoestring trick after I closed a ring and before the shuttles were pulled through the next ring.
That way the second shuttle now was loaded with beads and the first shuttle still had enough thread to handle the second half of the split ring and I didn’t have one shuttle overloaded with beads. I did have to add thread but had it been fully loaded at the start, I don’t think that would have been necessary. It will vary with each person’s tatting but using size 20 thread and 200 beads total, the cord was approximately 34 inches long.
The original pattern which inspired this pattern was from the 1915 December Needlecraft, issue. "Necklace with Butterfly Slide" by Sarah Ethel Compton.
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